Free films abound on campus this spring
Faculty, staff, students and the greater community are invited to three intriguing film series screening on campus this semester. The Russian Film Series, The Irish in Film, and American Identity: Visions and Revisions are all free and open to the public.
The Russian series, sponsored by the Russian and East European Studies Program, kicks off at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, February 4 with Russian Ark (2002), Director Alexander Sokurov’s award-winning portrayal of the history and culture of imperial Russia told in one fluid camera shot in St. Petersburg’s majestic Hermitage. The film will be screened in the DiMenna-Nyselius Library Multimedia Room.
Next up at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, February 25 is Poor, Poor Pavel (2003), in the Library Multimedia Room. In this period drama, Director Vitali Melhikov tells the tale of the short, yet interesting reign of Emperor Paul (Pavel) I, son of Catherine the Great.
On Tuesday, March 11 at 7 p.m., Director Aleksandr Zarkhi’s original Anna Karenina (1967) comes to the Multimedia Room’s screen. Tatiana Samoilova tackles the title role in this sweeping film based on the timeless classic by Leo Tolstoy.
The last film in the series is October (1928), directors Sergei Eisenstein and Grigori Aleksandrov’s searing and groundbreaking classic about the Bolshevik Revolution of 1917. This silent Soviet propaganda film based on a book by John Reed will be screened at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, April 8, in Room 200 of the Barone Campus Center.
“American Identity,” which began on January 28, is a series of films highlighting American history and culture sponsored by American Studies. Each will be shown at 7 p.m. in the Library Multimedia Room and will be introduced by a member of the American Studies faculty, who will field questions from the audience after the screening.
On Tuesday, February 11, Dr. Yohuru Williams, professor and chair of the History Department, will present 42 (2013), the story of Jackie Robinson, the first African-American to play in American Major League Baseball. Dr. Williams is chief historian at the Jackie Robinson Foundation.
Next up on Monday, March 10 is Director Ed Harris’ Pollock (2000), with Oscar-winning Marcia Gay Harden opposite Harris in the starring role as American painter Jackson Pollock. Dr. Philip Eliasoph, professor of art history, will introduce the film.
The series concludes for the spring semester on Tuesday, April 8 with Milk (2008) presented by Dr. Gwendoline Alphonso, assistant professor of politics. Directed by Gus Van Sant, the film features Oscar-winner Sean Penn as Harvey Milk, the first openly gay person to be elected to public office in California.
“The Irish in Film,” sponsored by the Irish Studies Program, returns on Wednesday, April 2, with the first of four films this semester. The films will be shown in the Library’s Multimedia Room on Wednesday evenings at 7 p.m. Light refreshments will be served.
Three of the films in spring series feature director Neil Jordan and actor Stephen Rea in a celebration of their work. On March 19, Rea will be on campus to give a dramatic reading from James Joyce’s Ulysses at the Regina A. Quick Center for the Arts.
The series starts on Wednesday, April 2 with On Another Man’s Wound (2008). Directed by Jerry O’Callaghan, the documentary features revolutionary and writer Ernie O’Malley’s experiences as an IRA leader in the War of Independence and the Civil War. O’Malley’s son, Cormac O’Malley, who edited his father’s published papers and letters, will introduce the film.
On Wednesday, April 9, The Crying Game (1992), directed by Jordan and starring Rea, will be shown. The film deals with sexual identity, national identity, and the IRA’s efforts to get the British out of Northern Ireland. Dr. Robert Epstein, associate professor of English, will introduce the film.
On the following Wednesday, April 16, the feature will be Jordan’s award-winning film Michael Collins (1996), starring Rea and Liam Neeson. Neeson plays the charismatic leader of the Irish Volunteers, whose guerilla warfare and terrorist violence against the British proved so effective. Dr. William Abbott, associate professor of history, will introduce the film.
The Jordan/Rea festival concludes on Wednesday, April 23, with Breakfast on Pluto (2006), based on the 1998 novel by Patrick McCabe. Set during the Troubles of the 1970s, the film stars Cillian Murphy as Kitten, a transvestite, who journeys to London to find his mother who abandoned him as an infant. Dr. Nels Pearson, director of the Irish Studies Program and associate professor of English, will introduce the film. Christina Wilson, a doctoral student at the University of Connecticut, whose focus is Stephen Rea and Irish theater, will join Dr. Pearson in the presentation and Q&A.