While I might call it a "post-apocalyptic" fest since some are more about life after disaster than the actual end of the world, it's an interesting array of titles. The official word:
We may have escaped the 2012 Mayan apocalypse, but will humanity survive global warming, water shortages, the next plague, extraterrestrial events, or a Third World War? These questions have weighed on the minds of moviemakers for decades, but end-of-the-world narratives now seem more prevalent than ever.
The new Cleveland Institute of Art Cinematheque film series “Apocalypse Now—and Then” (running February 28 through April 26) surveys eight great international movies from the past and the present that deal with our precarious future. Great directors like Lars von Trier, Michael Haneke, Bela Tarr, and Andrei Tarkovsky are represented, and less highbrow cult classics like MIRACLE MILE and THE LAST MAN ON EARTH (which may have inspired NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD) will also be shown.
All movies will screen from 35mm film prints in the Aitken Auditorium of the Cleveland Institute of Art, 11141 East Boulevard in University Circle, telephone (216) 421-7450, www.cia.edu/cinematheque. Admission to each film is $9; Cinematheque members $7; age 25 & under $6 (with proof of age). Free parking is available in the adjacent CIA lot.
APOCALYPSE NOW—AND THEN
THU 2/28 8:25 PM MELANCHOLIA
SAT 3/2 9:10 PM MELANCHOLIA
THU 3/7 8:50 PM TIME OF THE WOLF
FRI 3/8 7:15 PM TIME OF THE WOLF
SAT 3/9 5:15 PM GLEN AND RANDA
SAT 3/16 5:15 PM THE LAST MAN ON EARTH
SUN 3/17 8:45 PM THE LAST MAN ON EARTH
FRI 3/22 9:00 PM THE TURIN HORSE
SUN 3/24 6:30 PM THE TURIN HORSE
SAT 3/30 8:45 PM THE SACRIFICE
MON 4/1 7:00 PM THE SACRIFICE
THU 4/18 9:00 PM MIRACLE MILE
FRI 4/19 7:30 PM MIRACLE MILE
THU 4/25 8:30 PM CHILDREN OF MEN
FRI 4/26 7:30 PM CHILDREN OF MEN
Thursday, February 28, at 8:25 pm &
Saturday, March 2, at 9:10 pm
Denmark/Sweden/France/Germany, 2011, Lars von Trier
Named the Best Film of 2011 by both the National Society of Film Critics and the European Film Awards, Lars von Trier’s most recent movie is a visually stunning drama with an all-star cast: Kirsten Dunst, Charlotte Gainsbourg, Kiefer Sutherland, et al. Set at a lavish estate, the film follows two sisters at a disastrous dusk-to-dawn wedding reception—and later on the property as a rogue planet hurtles toward earth on a possible collision course. 35mm color & scope print! In English. 136 min.
Thursday, March 7, at 8:50 pm &
Friday, March 8, at 7:15 pm
TIME OF THE WOLF
LE TEMPS DU LOUP
France/Austria/Germany, 2003, Michael Haneke
Isabelle Huppert stars in this ten-year-old rarity from the director of Amour, The White Ribbon, and Caché. It’s a disaster film devoid of Hollywood heroes and special effects in which an affluent French woman and her two children try to survive in a post-apocalyptic world with no electricity and serious shortages of food and water. Haneke paints a dark, nightmarish portrait of the barbarism that lurks beneath the fragile surface of civilization. With Beatrice Dalle. Subtitles. 35mm. 114 min.
Saturday, March 9, at 5:15 pm
GLEN AND RANDA
USA, 1971, Jim McBride
Originally rated X, this forgotten futuristic fantasy from the director of David Holzman’s Diary and The Big Easy tells of two long-haired teenagers who look like 1960s hippies but are actually inhabitants of a post-apocalyptic world a few decades after Woodstock. (In other words, it takes place around now). Glen and Randa leave their rural tribe and set off in search of a great city that they have seen pictured in the lost civilization’s surviving manuscripts (i.e., comic books). As their singular odyssey takes them through the rubble and detritus of American society, this 1971 movie proffers a prophetic look back at late 20th-century pop culture. 35mm archive print! 94 min. Special thanks to Jim McBride.
Saturday, March 16, at 5:15 pm &
Sunday, March 17, at 8:45 pm
THE LAST MAN ON EARTH
Italy/USA, 1964, Ubaldo Ragona, Sidney Salkow
Vincent Price stars in the first film version of Richard Matheson’s I Am Legend, about a doctor who is the sole survivor of a worldwide plague and now must battle armies of the undead who want to drink his blood. This early zombie movie is often cited as the inspiration for George Romero’s Night of the Living Dead. In English. 35mm scope print! 86 min.
Friday, March 22, at 9:00 pm &
Sunday, March 24, at 6:30 pm
THE TURIN HORSE
Hungary, 2011, Béla Tarr, Ágnes Hranitzky
Béla Tarr’s latest (and he says last) film is an apocalyptic allegory set on a remote, windswept plain where an aging farmer, his grown daughter, and a precious work horse cling to longstanding daily routines despite growing evidence that the end of their world is near. The Turin Horse is as austere, taciturn, and bleakly beautiful as Tarr’s previous miserablist masterpieces Sátántangó, Werckmeister Harmonies, and Damnation. Subtitles. 35mm. 146 min.
Saturday, March 30, at 8:45 pm &
Monday, April 1, at 7:00 pm
Sweden/France, 1986, Andrei Tarkovsky
Andrei Tarkovsky’s last film (he died from cancer in 1986 at age 54) is a solemn, magnificent fable about the loss of spirituality in the modern world. Shot is Sweden with Ingmar Bergman’s longtime cinematographer Sven Nykvist and his frequent star Erland Josephson, the movie tells of a man celebrating his birthday with friends when nuclear war breaks out. To avert disaster, the man makes a pact with the Almighty – forswearing everything he has if the world will be spared. Subtitles. 35mm. 145 min.
Thursday, April 18, at 9:00 pm &
Friday, April 19, at 7:30 pm
USA, 1988, Steve De Jarnatt
Regarded by many as one of the best “end of the world” films, this scary, sobering drama stars Anthony Edwards as a young Angelino who learns, by sheer chance, that nuclear Armageddon will commence in about an hour. He frantically searches for his new girlfriend (Mare Winningham) so they can flee L.A. together. 35mm. 87 min.
Thursday, April 25, at 8:30 pm &
Friday, April 26, at 7:30 pm
CHILDREN OF MEN
USA/UK, 2006, Alfonso Cuarón
Alfonso (Y Tu Mamá También, Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban) Cuarón’s last completed film (his long-delayed, multimillion-dollar Gravity is due later this year) is one of the best movies of the 2000s. It’s a dystopian sci-fi fantasy set in 2027, when the UK is a police state overrun with refugees, and humans teeter on the verge of extinction after two decades of infertility. Clive Owen plays a government bureaucrat who is kidnapped by a rebel immigrant group and charged with escorting a special young refugee through the war zone to safety. With Julianne Moore and Michael Caine. The incredible cinematography is by Emmanuel Lubezki (The Tree of Life, The New World). 35mm. 108 min.