Bring the year to a close draped in Artistic Luxury at the Cleveland Museum of Art
s December film series. This months series features movies never shown before in Cleveland as well as films depicting the turn-of-the-century opulence showcased in the museums current special exhibit Artistic Luxury: Faberge, Tiffany and Lalique.
The month begins with the Cleveland premiere of four international films: Santouri the Music Man, The Crystal Liturgy: Olivier Messiaen, Days and Clouds and Love Comes Lately. These four films from four different countries take viewers around the world to experience music, culture and the extraordinary lives of the ordinary man.
Wrapping up the year, CMA will host a Holiday Film Festival featuring five classics of world cinema. Titled Lapse of Luxury, these movies serve as a trip through time, chronicling the demise of the 19th century aristocracy and its elaborate lifestyle, along with the democratic rise of lower and middle classes. They screen between Christmas and New Years Day.
Santouri the Music Man
Friday, December 5, 7 p.m.
Saturday, December 6, 1:30 p.m.
Directed by Dariush Mehrjui. Banned in its home country, the latest film by master Iranian filmmaker Dariush Mehrjui (who also suffered censorship under the Shah) follows a popular singer-songwriter and player of the santoor (an ancient stringed instrument) as he spirals into heroin addiction and destroys his life and career. Suggests that Iran's current cultural repression and rampant drug addiction are no mere coincidence. Variety. Cleveland theatrical premiere. (Iran, 2007, color, subtitles, 35mm, 106 min.)
The Crystal Liturgy: Olivier Messiaen
Sunday, December 7, 1:30 p.m.
Directed by Olivier Mille, with Olivier Messiaen. This portrait of innovative, nature-loving French composer Olivier Messiaen (19081992) contains interviews, archival film clips, and excerpts from his music. Presented as part of the museums Messiaen Centenary celebration. Cleveland theatrical premiere. (France, 2002, color, subtitles, DVD, 57 min.)
Days and Clouds
Friday, December 12, 6:45 p.m.
Sunday, December 14, 1:30 p.m.
Directed by Silvio Soldini, with Margherita Buy and Antonio Albanese. The acclaimed new drama from the director of Bread and Tulips tells of a prosperous, middle-aged couplerecent empty nesterswho face a crisis in their marriage when he reveals that he lost his job two months ago and their money is running out. A brave film simply for daring to portray a nightmare lurking in the minds of middle-aged workers. The New York Times. Cleveland theatrical premiere. (Italy/Switzerland, 2007, color, subtitles, 35mm, 115 min.)
Love Comes Lately
Friday, December 19, 7 p.m.
Sunday, December 21, 1:30 p.m.
Directed by Jan Schütte, with Otto Tausig, Barbara Hershey, and Rhea Pearlman. Based on three stories by Isaac Bashevis Singer, this delightful film tells of an octogenarian fiction writer and Lothario who has trouble suppressing his overactive imaginationand libidoduring a lecture tour. Cleveland premiere. (Germany/Austria/USA, 2007, color, 35mm, 86 min.)
2008 Holiday Film Festival: Lapse of Luxury
Friday, December 26, 1:30 p.m.
Directed by Luchino Visconti, with Burt Lancaster, Claudia Cardinale, and Alain Delon. This sumptuous historical epic is set in 19th-century Sicily at the time of Garibaldi and the unification of Italy. It tells of a prince and family patriarch whose aristocratic lifestyle is about to be swept away by the tide of history. Music by Nino Rota. (Italy/France, 1962, color, subtitles, 35mm, 188 min.)
The Magnificent Ambersons
Saturday, December 27, 1:30 p.m.
Directed by Orson Welles, with Tim Holt, Joseph Cotten, and Agnes Moorehead. Orson Welles mutilated follow-up to Citizen Kane is still moving and sublime, and always appears high on lists of the best movies ever made. Based on a Booth Tarkington novel, it chronicles the decline of a great Midwestern family and the advent of the automobile at the cusp of the 20th century. (USA, 1942, b&w, 35mm, 88 min.)
Sunday, December 28, 1:30 p.m.
Directed by Jean Renoir, with Jean Gabin, Pierre Fresnay, and Erich von Stroheim. This humanistic masterpiece, one of the great anti-war movies, explores class differences among French prisoners and their German captors at a P.O.W. camp during WWI. (France, 1937, b&w, subtitles, 35mm, 117 min.)
The Earrings of Madame de
Tuesday, December 30, 1:30 p.m.
Directed by Max Ophuls, with Danielle Darrieux, Charles Boyer, and Vittorio De Sica. This elegant, rapturous film set in ¬fin de siècle Paris is a high-society drama of adultery centered around a pair of earrings that continually changes hands. (France/Italy, 1953, b&w, subtitles, 35mm, 105 min.)
Wednesday, December 31, 1:30 p.m.
Directed by Alexander Sokurov. 300 years of Russian history are condensed into one continuous, 90-min. tracking shot through St. Petersburgs Hermitage Museum (formerly the czars Winter Palace) in this unprecedented art film. The camera follows a time-traveling 19th-century French diplomat as he wends his way through 33 rooms and corridors and around 2,000 costumed extras, eventually landing in the midst of the last great royal ball held during the reign of Nicholas II. (Russia/Germany, 2002, color, subtitles, 35mm, 96 min.)