February 11

Michelangelo Antonioni (1961) 
115 mins PG

24 hours in the breakdown of a marriage. Following L’avventura, Antonioni further explores the trials and tribulations of an alienated and unfaithful couple marooned in an unresponsive and indifferent environment. The cold beauty of Milan’s modern architecture and the murky streets through which Jeanne Moreau’s character aimlessly wanders, provide the film’s pungently moody and gauzily lit background. The extended party sequence that concludes the film is one of the highpoints of Antonioni’s career and characterises his concern with the disconnections of contemporary life, the restless boredom of the bourgeoisie, the mystery of human relationships and the discomfiting freedom wrought by modernity.

With Marcello Mastroianni, Monica Vitti and Bernhard Wicki.

35mm print courtesy of Cinecittà Luce.

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‘La notte’. by Gwendolyn Audrey Foster.

February 18

Michelangelo Antonioni (1957) 
116 mins

Antonioni’s first international production inaugurated and fully cemented his mature, modern, elliptical style. A sugar refinery worker (Steve Cochran) wanders with his young daughter through the wintry and desolate Po Valley landscape where the filmmaker grew up. Taking a characteristically “road” form, it is an elegy to one man’s mental disintegration when isolated from those he loves. In many ways a precursor to such later peripatetic works as L’eclisse, Zabriskie Point and The Passenger, this transitional opus, combining the ambulatory landscapes of neo-realism with a more modernist vision, is probably the director’s most underrated film. With Alida Valli.

35mm print courtesy of Cinecittà Luce.


Michelangelo Antonioni (1975) 
126 mins PG

Jack Nicholson stars as a disillusioned journalist who makes the strange decision to exchange identities with a colleague he has discovered dead in his hotel room. Antonioni’s third English-language feature is an evocatively subdued thriller and road movie (taking in Barcelona, London and North Africa). Luciano Tovoli’s arrestingly scenic cinematography is harnessed to express psychological tension in pure and dynamic visual terms, relegating conventional dependence on drama and dialogue. The concluding sequence, a precisely executed seven-minute tracking shot, suspensefully delivers the film’s final, inexplicable shock. With Maria Schneider.


February 25

Michelangelo Antonioni (1982) 
128 mins R

Antonioni’s final incontestable masterpiece recalls his epochal films of social alienation and infuses their themes with 
a startlingly frank sexuality. In a daring 
and risky move, the main character is a film director himself, and the story of 
his ensuing affairs is a discomfortingly 
ambiguous expose of masculine desire and creative obsession. With surprising comic moments and typically audacious visual set pieces, the film is both a summation and development of Antonioni’s thoughts on modernity and the entropy 
in human relations. Brilliantly shot by 
Carlo Di Palma.

35mm print courtesy 
of Cinecittà Luce.


Michelangelo Antonioni (1970) 
110 mins M

Antonioni’s most visionary work is a massively expensive, impressionistic view of late ’60s American materialism culminating in one of the most extraordinary explosions ever captured on film. Featuring several audacious set pieces including a rhapsodic lovemaking sequence in Death Valley and an ambiguously staged university shooting, Antonioni’s characteristically abstract anti-establishment reflection on tumultuous times was co-written by Sam Shepard, Antonioni, Tonino Guerra and Clare Peploe and memorably scored by such acts as Pink Floyd, The Grateful Dead, The Rolling Stones and John Fahey. With Rod Taylor.


March 4

Paul Thomas Anderson (1996) 
101 mins MA

Screening in Un Certain Regard at Cannes, Anderson’s beautifully controlled debut feature, originally titled “Sydney”, inaugurated a series of collaborations that would come to shape his career. Grouping the prodigious talents of John C. Reilly, Philip Baker Hall, Gwyneth Paltrow, Samuel L. Jackson and Philip Seymour Hoffman into a study of night crawling, 
this expansion of the director’s short 
Cigarettes & Coffee (1993) tracks the shifts of power and affection between a mentor and his mentee across the Nevada casino circuit. Anderson’s audacious yet assured direction dazzles in neon-noir.

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‘Hard Eight and the Isolated Actor’ by Paul Jeffery.

Paul Thomas Anderson (1997) 
155 mins R

Anderson’s breakthrough film is an episodic and often disarmingly sweet-natured tale of intersecting lives in the late 1970s Los Angeles porn industry. Heavily influenced by an array of filmmakers including Scorsese and Altman, Anderson’s second feature is an exuberant, intermittently critical and brilliantly rendered vision of modern life in the San Fernando Valley (where the director was raised). Full of eye-popping images, sparkling natural and neon light, it is another networked portrait of “family” life.

The extraordinary ensemble cast includes Mark Wahlberg (as Dirk Diggler), Julianne Moore, Burt Reynolds, Don Cheadle and Philip Seymour Hoffman.

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‘Boogie Nights’ by Geoff Mayer.

March 11

Paul Thomas Anderson (2002) 
95 mins M

After a brief foray into writing for Saturday Night Live, Anderson paired up with Adam Sandler to create a surprising, even gentle film. Sandler’s portrayal of intense loneliness, framed by the weight of his fits of anger, reveals a far more nuanced performance than the broad comedy the actor is widely known for. An unusual romantic comedy, Anderson pits the quest for romance against a constant threat of nervous breakdown, inverting generic expectations in favour 
of empathy over narrative gratification.

With Emily Watson, Luis Guzmán and Philip Seymour Hoffman.

‘Punch Drunk Love’ by Wheeler Winston Dixon.

Paul Thomas Anderson (2007) 
158 mins M

Comparable to Citizen Kane in that it depicts nothing less than the making of America, Anderson’s profoundly ambitious film is also a “parable about capitalism, piracy and initiative” (David Thomson). Inspired by, but in no way an adaptation of, Upton Sinclair’s novel Oil!, the film revolves round Daniel Day-Lewis’ Oscar-winning performance, thrown into sharp relief with Paul Dano’s role as the antagonist. Exaggerated, hyperbolic, anti-naturalistic, this is oil-black comedy masquerading as epic drama. Arguably Anderson’s greatest film, for many critics it presented proof that “thrillingly, dangerously new” invention was still possible in the cinema. Atmospheric score by Radiohead’s Jonny Greenwood.

35mm print courtesy of the National Film and Sound Archive, Australia.

‘There Will Be Blood’ by John Fidler.