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FRIDAY - Amour Fou

Programmed by: Cyrus Westerlund

When looking for the impetus for this Amour Fou series, look no further than the scene in Badlands, where the young and impressionable Holly is dancing in the woods with her mysterious (and maybe dangerous) boyfriend Kit to the Mickey and Sylvia classic “Love is Strange.” It is a moment where two outsiders—one innocent, another not so much—share a moment of romantic intimacy away from the unapproving eyes of common society. It is a moment that we alone are able to see on the screen. TAB While there have been many films about love stories between the dashing and beautiful, the “Amour Fou,” or “crazy love” casts the camera on cinema’s more off-kilter lovers, whether they be outsiders, adulterers, freaks, or sinners. These oddball romances challenge the audience by forcing them to imagine perspectives beyond their own conventional ones. Whether through the eyes of a teenage girl toward a man ten years her senior who looks like James Dean and takes her to places she’s never been, or a gentle young man enticed into a spree of violence and crime by a femme fatale, the Amour Fou offers peculiar subjects that one would not find in other romance films, and are instead often controversial or even disturbing. However, they are also layered texts with complex characters, who have even thornier motivations and desires. This leads to stories that are immensely tantalizing, even at their most salacious. If it's so wrong, why does it feel so right?

Harold and Maude (1971)

Harold and Maude (1971) still

Hal Ashby · 91m · 35mm

Harold is a morose young man whose obsession with death is distasteful to his wealthy socialite mother. When he meets Maude, a 79-year-old free spirit who lives life to the fullest—even in spite of the law—the two strike up an odd friendship and a deep affection. Both a black comedy and an innocent romance, Harold and Maude highlights love that exists between members of society’s strange and outcast, with a classic soundtrack by Cat Stevens.

7:00PM Friday, September 29th

Lost Highway (1997)

Lost Highway (1997) still

David Lynch · 134m · DCP

Fred, a Los Angeles saxophonist, continuously recieves VHS tapes of his home, which become increasingly cryptic. Meanwhile, he has surreal dreams which cause him to suspect that his wife is not exactly who she seems. One of Lynch’s most confounding puzzles, Lost Highway is a frightening dreamscape of memory, identity, and desire better seen than explained.

7:00PM Friday, October 6th

A Woman Under the Influence (1974)

A Woman Under the Influence (1974) still

John Cassavetes · 155m · DCP

As lonely housewife Mabel becomes increasingly unhappy and unstable, her husband Nick, an L.A. construction worker, begins to think Mabel will be a danger to their children and himself, despite her love for them. Written by Cassavetes when Gena Rowlands desired a play about the difficulties faced by contemporary women, A Woman Under the Influence contains two of the most wrought and heart-breaking performances of a couple desperately in love but ostensibly incompatible.

7:00PM Friday, October 13th· 4:00PM Saturday, October 14th

Badlands (1973)

Badlands (1973) still

Terrence Malick · 94m · DCP

In a dead-end South Dakota town, Holly, a lonely teenage girl, meets Kit, a handsome 20-something garbage collector. Kit’s charming nature belies underlying violent tendencies that Holly is unaware of. When Holly’s father disapproves of their relationship, Kit murders him and the two escape to the badlands of Montana. Based on the real Starkweather killing spree, Badlands is a poetic juxtaposition of innocence, natural beauty, and human violence.

7:00PM Friday, October 20th· 3:00PM Sunday, October 22nd

Thirst (2009)

Thirst (2009) still

Park Chan-wook · 134m · DCP

When Sang-hyun, a respected priest, selflessly volunteers for an experimental procedure to cure a deadly virus, he is infected and killed--only to be brought back as a vampire through a mysterious blood transfusion. Now, his increasingly waning faith must face his new insatiable craving for blood, as well as his newfound desire for the wife of his childhood friend, Tae-ju. Thirst is an erotic thriller about losing control of one’s sinful impulses.

7:00PM Friday, October 27th

A Story from Chikamatsu (1954)

A Story from Chikamatsu (1954) still

Kenji Mizoguchi · 102m · DCP

In 17th century Kyoto, Osan, the wife of a wealthy scroll-maker, is falsely accused of having an affair with Mohei, her husband’s apprentice. When the two are sentenced to death in order to avoid humiliation for her husband, they go on the run. Considered one of Mizoguchi’s late masterpieces, A Story from Chikamatsu (aka The Crucified Lovers) details the journey of two star-crossed paramours bound by fate.

7:00PM Friday, November 3rd

Gun Crazy (1950)

Gun Crazy (1950) still

Joseph H. Lewis · 87m · 35mm

Bart Tare, an ex-army man with a lifelong fixation on guns, meets Annie Starr, a sharpshooting carnival worker. The two strike up a hot-blooded romance centered around their shared fascination with firearms. When they find themselves broke and unemployed, Annie suggests they embark on a crime spree. An audacious and exhilarating film noir, Gun Crazy is a precursor to every lovers-on-the-run story that followed, including the ones of the French New Wave.

7:00PM Friday, November 10th· 7:00PM Saturday, November 11th

The Night Porter (1974)

The Night Porter (1974) still

Liliana Cavani · 118m · Digital

On a trip to Vienna with her husband, Lucia, a Holocaust survivor, encounters Max—a former SS officer, and her former torturer and lover. Reunited, the two recreate their sadomasochistic relationship; however, Max’s former SS comrades start to stalk them. Unsettling and controversial, The Night Porter intertwines the grief of the victim and the guilt and shame of the offender into an unflinching tale about remembering the atrocities of the Holocaust.

7:00PM Friday, November 17th

Written on the Wind (1956)

Written on the Wind (1956) still

Douglas Sirk · 99m · DCP

In this operatic tragedy, Mitch, a geologist, begins working for his best friend’s debased Texas oil family. However, when he falls in love with his friend’s unsatisfied wife, Lucy (Lauren Bacall), their affair unleashes a torrent of psychosexual angst, jealousy, and a murder accusation by the family’s debaucherous daughter Marylee. In this feverish melodrama, Douglass Sirk crafts some of his most florid technicolor visuals and most scathing critiques of American culture.

7:00PM Friday, December 1st