Hiroshima Mon Amour

387. HIROSHIMA MON AMOUR (1959-FRANCE). WITH Emmanuelle riva, eiji okada. DIRECTED by ALAIN RESNAIS. A landmark in the history Of cinema: one Of the handful Of works that have actually created a new and influential film language! Alain Resnais (Night and Fog), directing his first feature, has brilliantly organized a spellbinding mosaic Of past and present, imagination and reality, time and memory, personal anguish and national disaster, and-as the title suggestsÑsexuality and destruction. The opening close ups Of nude bodies covered with something resembling either perspiration or atomic dust set the abstract, dreamlike tone for this unique drama. A French actress, who is in Hiroshima making a film about peace, has an affair with a Japanese architect whose family had suffered the atomic holocaust fourteen years earlier. During a 24-hour period, they make love, reveal their painful memories, and try to determine their futures. The couple’s experiences in the reconstructed city are intercut with newsreel shots Of Hiroshima’s destruction and flashbacks Of the woman’s own agonies in occupied France: her afÂfair with a German soldier, his murder, her public disgrace and nervous breakdown. (Presenting her memories out Of chronological order-in brief, almost subliminal glimpsesÑResnais shows an absolutely unrivalled command Of editing.) Can these two people overcome national and racial boundaries, and their traumatic pasts, to achieve a lasting relationship? Can the world be made to remember lhe overwhelming tragedies Of wart With its powerful messages, extraordinarily poetic dialogue, gracefully flowing camera movements, haunting music, and pioneering use Of time, Resnais” film is a still-relevant work Of social commitment, and an immoral masterpiece Of cinematic art. In French with English subtitles. 89 minutes. Drama

Force Of Impulse

2537. FORCE OF IMPULSE (1960-USA). With ROBERT ALDA, J. CARROL NAISH, JEFF DONNELL, JODY MeCREA, TONY ANTHONY, LIONEL HAMPTON, CHRISTINA CRAWFORD. One would think that young Toby Marino has the world at his feet. He is seventeen years old. He is the touch down-scoring star of his high school football team. A pert cheerleader named Kathy is hot for him. So is beautiful Bunny Reese, daughter of a fabulously wealthy businessman. However, Toby’s life is far from simple and sweet. Bunny is anxious to make Toby a part of her life, even though one-too-many in her set look down on him because of his working-class background. Toby delivers groceries; the closest he has ever gotten to a golf course has been as a caddy. Toby’s father is a kind but uneducated Italian immigrant who operates a meat and fruit market. Papa reminds Toby of his place in the world. He is no rich boy, and whatever he accomplishes in life will not be handed to him. To add to Toby’s angst, his “friends” cruelly chide him because he covets Bunny and a life in the upper class. How will Toby Marino fit into the world? Is Bunny really an appropriate girlfriend? Find out in this complex and intelligent, heartfelt and extremely well-acted coming-of-age drama. Veteran character actor J. Carrol Naish offers an especially flavorful performance as Toby’s father, and the once-in-a-life- time cast includes Christina CrawfordÑdaughter of JoanÑin the role of Ann. 83 minutes. Romance

Love Affair

2361. LOVE AFFAIR (1939-USA). With IRENE DUNNE, CHARLES BOYER, MARIA OUSPENSKAYA, LEE BOWMAN, ASTRID ALLWYN. Directed by LEO McCAREY. If a programmer in a revival house were to put together a series devoted to great Hollywood romantic movies, this sophisticated and poignant classic certainly would qualify as the opening night selection. Dapper Charles Boyer is at his continental best as Michel Marnet, a notorious Casanova. The film opens with Michel sailing from Naples to New York. Rumor has it that he will be entering into marriage with a society heiress. While Ion board, Michel cannot help but start a flirtation with Terry McKay (Irene Dunne, in a lovely perforÂmance). However, Michel and Terry’s casual relationship soon deepens into serious romance. Upon arriving in New York the pair separate, but not before agreeing to meet in six months time at the top of the Empire State Building if they feel their love has not faded. Cruel fate plays a nasty role as the sceÂnario masterfully evolves from romantic comedy to tragedy and high drama. This is the first and by far the best of several filmed versions of the story, and it earned a slew of Academy Award nominations. One was for Best Picture. Others were for Best Actress (Irene Dunne), Best Original Story, Best Art Direction and Best Song. Maria Ouspenskaya also was cited as Best Supporting Actress for her cunning portrayal of Michel’s all-knowing grandmother. 87 minutes Romance

Mad Whirl, The

2216. THE MAD WHIRL (1925-USA). With MAY McAVOY, JACK MULHALL. Screen treatment by LEWIS MILESTONE. This is a provocative drama of clashing beliefs and cultures. It is set during the Roaring Twenties, when young people of means suddenly found themselves enjoying freedoms that their elders had never dreamed of. Bathtub gin and the Charleston were the rage. A woman could smoke a cigarette and be in the company of a man without the nuisance of a chaperon. Those who were in middle age during the 1920s had come of age during the Victorian era; perhaps they understandably might be jealous of the Younger Generation. Such is the case with the super wealthy Herringtons. Mr. H. has been “bitten by the Jazz microbe at sixty.” Mrs. H. “does at forty what she was not allowed to do at twenty.” They condone the wild behavior of their son Jack and his reckless friends. These jazz babies pass their days idly cavorting at the beach. Even though he may not know it, Jack Herrington is looking for something more substantial in his life. You can sense this when he becomes smitten with chaste, church-going Cathleen Gillis. Cathleen’s working-class father forbids her to see him. She likes Jack and attempts to “reform” him. Will Jack and Cathleen have a future? Most important of all, how will their relationship end up impacting on the elder Herringtons? The film also is of note as a very early writing credit of Lewis Milestone, who was soon to become a top Hollywood director. “Silent” film with music score. 64 minutes. “Silent” Romance

Wishing Ring, The

2227. THE WISHING RING (1914-USA). With VIVIAN MARTIN. Directed by MAURICE TOURNEUR. This charming “idyll of Old England” is the story of a likable but reckless young college student named Giles Bateson. Giles would much rather carouse with his classmates than turn the page of a textbook. He is summarily expelled from school for “gross misconduct” after one particularly boisterous night with his pals. Giles’ father, the Earl of Bateson, is not amused. Father and son become estranged, with the former not wishing to set eyes upon the latter until he earns a half-crown. Squire Annesley, Giles’ godfather, comes to his rescue. He hires the young man to tend his rose garden while he is away on a trip. Enter a sweet young thing named Sally. She is both the daughter of a poor preacher and the “little rose thief” who has been pilfering flowers from the squire’s garden for her father’s church. Giles and Sally meet as he nabs her in the act. Soon he is a young man hopelessly in love. Sally is more than just a maturing influence on Giles. She learns of his severed relationship with his father and becomes determined to mend the rift. The film is directed with a keen eye for atmosphere by the prolific Maurice Tourneur, one of the most talented and respected of all silent-era filmmakers. “Silent” film with music score. 55 minutes. “Silent” Romance

Pygmalion

2178. PYGMALION (1938-England). With WENDY HILLER, LESLIE HOWARD. Directed by ANTHONY ASQUITH and LESLIE HOWARD. Screenplay by GEORGE BERNARD SHAW, based on his play. This near-perfect translation to celluloid Of Shaw’s famous play is a treat from start to finish. It tells the beloved story Of Henry Higgins, phonetics prOfessor and perfectionist who sets out to transform the uncultivated Cockney flower girl Eliza Doolittle into a seemingly well-bred product Of high society. Eliza has the breeding and manners Of a stevedore. She speaks with an insufferable Cockney accent. So Higgins Offers this guttersnipe an intense crash course in deportment, conduct and speech. Of course, he has convinced himself that his interest in Eliza is purely academic. However, what will become Of her once the teaching process is complete? What has Eliza learned beyond the formalities Of how to walk and talk? You also would be hard-pressed to find a Leslie Howard performance that is as comÂmanding as the one he gives as Higgins. Because Of alt the changes she undergoes in the course Of the story, Eliza Doolittle has never been an easy role for any actress. Wendy Hiller takes on the part full force and what emerges is a rich and impeccable characterization. Killer and Howard were rewarded with well-deserved Academy Award nominations; the film also earned a Best Picture nod. It was a winÂner in two major categories, Writing (Adaptation) and Writing (Screenplay). The film additionally was edited by a young director-to-be named DAVID LEAN. 87 minutes. Romance