LONGWOOD UNIVERSITY ART DEPARTMENT

 

 

 

 

 

General Education Film Series: Previously Shown Films

 

Spring 2010
Fall 2009
Spring 2009
Fall 2008
Spring 2008
Fall 2007
Spring 2007
Fall 2006
Spring 2006

Spring Semester 2010 Schedule

DATE
FILM
LOCATION
20 January
Moving Midway Wygal 204
17 February
A Secret (Un Secret) Wygal 204
3 March
Chop Shop Wygal 204
24 March
The Cove LCVA
7 April
Food, Inc. LCVA
TIME
All films begin at 7p.m.

Film Summaries

Moving Midway
A filmmaker documents the relocation of his family’s North Carolina plantation home, uncovering the ways that the past still lives in the present. 

“Quirky yet thoughtful” with a “satisfyingly Faulknerian air of bizarreness.”  L.A. Times and New York Post

Not rated.
Rotten Tomatoes Reviews | Internet Movie Database entry

A Secret (Un Secret), part of the French Film Festival
Based on a true story, the film depicts a fifteen-year-old boy in post-war France who uncovers family secrets from the Nazi occupation. 

“Artfully shaped and narrated.” – New York Times

Not rated.
Internet Movie Database entry

Chop Shop
A moving depiction of a boy’s efforts to escape poverty and hopelessness on the streets of New York City. 

“A sharp mixture of neo-realist grit and lyricism.” –Chicago Tribune

Not rated.
Rotten Tomatoes Reviews | Internet Movie Database entry

The Cove
Part crime thriller, part undercover journalism, and part National Geographic special, the film examines the illegal dolphin trade, focusing on a small Japanese fishing village. 

“It has the breathless pace of a Bourne movie, but none of the comfort of fiction. This is documentary filmmaking at its most exciting and purposeful.” – Rolling Stone

Rated PG-13.
Rotten Tomatoes Reviews | Internet Movie Database entry

Food, Inc.
An exploration of America’s food production and supply systems, tracing our food from seed to saucepan. 

“A scary movie that’s also funny, touching and good for you.” – Baltimore Sun

Rated PG.
Rotten Tomatoes Reviews | Internet Movie Database entry


Fall Semester 2009 Schedule

DATE
FILM
LOCATION
September 16
Jellyfish Wygal 204
October 7
Munyurangabo LCVA
October 28
Happy Go Lucky Wygal 204
November 18
Surfwise LCVA

Film Summaries

Jellyfish
Three Israeli women's lives intersect in a sometimes comical, sometimes dramatic musing on life's joys and sorrows.

“Marvelously inventive, often ironic .... a dreamy, arty, alluringly cockeyed tale.”
– Entertainment Weekly

Not rated.
Rotten Tomatoes Reviews | Internet Movie Database entry

Munyurangabo
Two boys in Rwanda explore the promise – and challenges – of peace.

“A beautiful and powerful film – a masterpiece.” – Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times

Not rated.
Rotten Tomatoes Reviews | Internet Movie Database entry

Happy Go Lucky
A sunny yet edgy exploration of a British teacher's optimistic outlook.

“Oddball and ingenious.” – Philadelphia Inquirer

Rated R.
Rotten Tomatoes Reviews | Internet Movie Database entry

Surfwise
The true story of an unorthodox family who opted for a life surfing at the beach over conventionality.

“A riveting documentary that focuses more on weird family dynamics than big waves .” – Minneapolis Star-Tribune

Rated R.
Rotten Tomatoes Reviews | Internet Movie Database entry


Spring Semester 2009 Schedule

DATE
FILM
GOALS
January 21
Up the Yangtze  
March 25
Trouble the Water  
April 15
Encounters at the End of the World  

Film Summaries

Up the Yangtze

Examining the impact of China’s Three Gorges Dam on the lives of two young people and their ancient culture.

“Witty, lovely and profoundly unsettling.” – Salon.com

Not rated.
Rotten Tomatoes Reviews | Internet Movie Database entry

Trouble the Water
Exploration of Hurricane Katrina showing tragedy, mismanagement, and heroism.

“A deeply moving story of resilience and redemption.” – Wall Street Journal

Not rated.
Rotten Tomatoes Reviews | Internet Movie Database entry

Encounters at the End of the World
A journey to a scientific community in Antarctica considers both human nature and Mother Nature.

“A contrarian spiritual journey as provocative as it is hypnotic.” – Philadelphia Inquirer

Rated G.
Rotten Tomatoes Reviews | Internet Movie Database entry

Fall 2008 Semester Schedule

DATE
FILM
GOALS
September 17
An Unreasonable Man  
October 8*
Taxi to the Dark Side  
October 29
The Orphanage  
November 12
The Band's Visit  

Film Summaries

An Unreasonable Man
“A perceptive and beautifully made documentary portrait of [activist and presidential candidate Ralph] Nader.”  – Entertainment Weekly

Not rated.
Rotten Tomatoes Reviews | Internet Movie Database entry

Taxi to the Dark Side
Academy Award-winning documentary exploring the suspicious death of an Afghani taxi driver in 2002.   “If recent American history is ever going to be discussed with the necessary clarity and ethical rigor, this film will be essential.” – The New York Times

Rated R.
Rotten Tomatoes Reviews | Internet Movie Database entry

The Orphanage
A fresh and thoughtful take on the ghost story, produced by Pan Labyrinth’s Guillermo del Toro. “An elegantly mounted, surprisingly humane but terrifying horror thriller.” – USA Today

Rated R.
Rotten Tomatoes Reviews | Internet Movie Database entry


The Band's Visit
An unlikely comedy about middle-eastern conflicts:  “A warm and delightful take on cross-cultural relations that proves that sometimes a light touch is just what’s needed to address serious topics.” -- Variety

Rated PG-13.
Rotten Tomatoes Reviews | Internet Movie Database entry

Spring 2008 Semester Schedule

DATE
FILM
GOALS
January 23
No End in Sight  
February 20
Bamako
 
March 5
Kamp Katrina  
March 26
The Fountain (shown on campus)
 
April 16
A Mighty Heart (shown on campus)  

Film Summaries

No End in Sight
"A clear-eyed, coherent dissection of how crucial decisions were made in the first weeks and months following the American invasion of Iraq.”  – The Reeler

Not rated.
Rotten Tomatoes Reviews | Internet Movie Database entry

Bamako
A courtroom drama and a portrait of everyday life in Mali:  “surprisingly moving, funny, tragic, strange and undogmatic.” – Salon

Not rated.
Rotten Tomatoes Reviews | Internet Movie Database entry


Kamp Katrina
“A touching documentary by Ashley Sabin and David Redmon introduces us to [residents] of the makeshift Kamp Katrina [following the hurricane].”  – The New York Post

Not rated.
Rotten Tomatoes Reviews


The Fountain
An impressionistic, imaginative fable about life and death:  “a haunting and remarkably emotional journey” –Maxim

Rated PG-13.
Rotten Tomatoes Reviews | Internet Movie Database entry

A Mighty Heart
Powerful dramatization of the life of Mariane Pearl:  “A worthy film on a great, tragic subject” – Chicago Tribune

Rated R.
Rotten Tomatoes Reviews | Internet Movie Database entry



Fall 2007 Semester Schedule

DATE
FILM
GOALS
September 26
Maxed Out
 
November 28
Sicko
 

Film Summaries

Maxed Out
Directed by James D. Scurlock
Maxed Out is an at-once hilarious, shocking, and sobering look at debt in America. Director James D. Scurlock takes the viewer on a journey to small towns and big cities throughout the US as he dissects the modern financial industry. He also sheds light on how the poor get poorer and the rich get richer. The film is a savvy investigation of important questions: What is a wise use of credit? What is personal financial responsibility? Is lending fair to all Americans?

Rated R.
Rotten Tomatoes Reviews | Internet Movie Database entry

Sicko
Directed by Michael Moore
Sicko, Michael Moore’s latest documentary, reveals the desperate state of health care in America. In his characteristic one-man approach to investigation, Moore combines interviews and news clips to shed light on the baffling experiences of individuals seeking medical care. Moore believes, “If you want to stay healthy in America, don’t get sick.” Michael Moore is the award-winning director of Fahrenheit 9/11 and Bowling for Columbine.

Rated R
Rotten Tomatoes Reviews | Internet Movie Database entry




Spring 2007 Semester Schedule

DATE
FILM
GOALS
February 21
C.S.A.: The Conferderate States of America
 
March 7
Eros
 
April 4
Kontroll
 
April 18
The Science of Sleep
 

Film Summaries

C.S.A.: The Confederate States of America
Directed by Kevin Willmott
Through the eyes of a British "documentary", this film takes a satirically humorous, and sometimes frightening, look at the history of an America where the South won the Civil War.

Rated R.
Rotten Tomatoes Reviews | Internet Movie Database entry


Eros
Directed by Michelangelo Antonioni, Steven Soderberg, and Kar Wai Wong
Three award-winning directors take a look at eroticism, sex, and love in different ways in the international omnibus film EROS. Hong Kong's Wong Kar-Wai (IN THE MOOD FOR LOVE, CHUNGKING EXPRESS) contributes "The Hand," a moving, poignant tale of a simple tailor, Zhang (Chang Chen), who becomes obsessed with an elegant, demanding, beautiful call girl, Ms. Hua (Gong Li), as he makes special dresses for her, knowing that she will wear them while being with other men. As her life dovetails, Zhang is faced with the choice of remaining her friend or leaving her to drown in the gutter. In "Equilibrium," writer-director Steven Soderbergh (TRAFFIC, ERIN BROCKOVICH) tells a black-and-white noir farce starring Robert Downey Jr. as an ad man relating his erotic dream to a psychiatrist (Alan Arkin) who appears to be more interested in peeping out his office window. And in "The Dangerous Thread of Things," Italian master Michelangelo Antonioni (BLOWUP, L'AVVENTURA) relates the story of fast-living rich people who toy with sex and romance as if they're games, as a husband (Christopher Buchholz) and wife (Regina Nemni) both become curious about a woman (Luisa Ranieri) who rides her horse across the beach. EROS is a tribute to Antonioni--he was 89 years old when he began filming his segment in 2001--who helped choose Wong and Soderbergh because both have pointed to him as a major influence.

Rated R
Rotten Tomatoes Reviews | Internet Movie Database entry

Kontroll
Directed by Nimrod Antal
Nominated for Best Foreign Language Film at the 2004 Academy Awards, writer-director Nimrod Antal's debut is a thrilling, claustrophobic, wild ride through the subway system in the Hungarian capital of Budapest. Sandor Csanyi stars as Bulcsu, the leader of a small crew that patrols the underground making sure that passengers have purchased a ticket. However, the men actually have little power themselves, so many people that they stop humiliate them, physically and verbally abuse them, and easily run away. Within this small world, Bulcsu and his gang, which includes the older Professor (Zoltan Mucsi), the narcoleptic Muki (Csaba Pindroch), the diminutive Lecso (Sandor Badar), and the young and innocent Tibi (Zsolt Nagy), battle Gonzo (Balazs Lazar) and his far more successful group of ticket checkers. In one of the film's most exciting scenes, Bulcsu and Gonzo go railing--racing down the tracks in between two moving trains. Meanwhile, a mysterious hooded person in black is pushing people in front of trains, a man named Bootsie (Bence Matyassy) continually escapes from the ticket checkers' clutches, a train conductor (Lajos Kovacs) indulges himself in food, drink, and smoke, and an odd woman (Eszter Balla) roams around the subway wearing a cute bear costume. But the more the story focuses on Bulcsu, who lives in the subway and always seems to be bleeding, the more powerful the film becomes, propelled by NEO's thumping techo soundtrack.

Rated R   
Rotten Tomatoes Reviews | Internet Movie Database entry


The Science of Sleep

Directed by Michel Gondry
For his first non-documentary film after 2004's ETERNAL SUNSHINE OF THE SPOTLESS MIND, French writer/director Michel Gondry applies his highly inventive cinematic vision to THE SCIENCE OF SLEEP. Largely set in the very active subconscious mind of Stephane (Gael Garcia Bernal), the movie bounces back and forth between his vivid dreams and mundane real life, which involves living in a Parisian apartment owned by his mother (Miou-Miou) and working at an office with a strange crew of characters, including the crass Guy (Alain Chabat). When Stephane meets Stephanie, a shy neighbor from next door (played by Charlotte Gainsbourg, the daughter of Gallic crooner Serge Gainsbourg and British singer/actress Jane Birkin), the two form an unusual friendship, one that may or may not lead to romance.

Rated R
Rotten Tomatoes Reviews
| Internet Movie Database entry


Summaries courtesy of Internet Movie Database and Rotten Tomatoes.

Fall 2006 Semester Schedule

DATE
FILM
GOALS
October 4
Tsotsi
9, 10, 13
October 25
It's A Gift
4
November 1
Heart of the Game
11, 13
November 15
Duck Season
9, 10
December 6 The Notorious Bettie Page 8, 13

Film Summaries

Tsotsi
Directed by Gavin Hood
Winner of the 2006 Oscar for Best Foreign Language Film.
Based on South African playwright Athol Fugard's only novel, Tsotsi is a thrilling, provocative look at life in the ghettos outside present-day Johannesburg. Presley Chweneyagae stars as the title character, a teenager with a killer stare who lives alone in a ramshackle room in a poor shantytown, where he pulls off petty crimes with the help of three compatriots—Boston, Butcher, and Aap. But after they stab a man to death on the subway and Tsotsi (which means "thug" or "gangster") beats up Boston for trying to find out about his past, Tsotsi runs off to a wealthy section of the city, shoots a woman, and steals her car. Only later does he discover that there is a baby in the back seat and decides to keep it for himself. As Tsotsi finally does look back at his own childhood, he tries to take care of the infant, carrying it around in a paper bag and forcing a young mother, Miriam, to breastfeed it at gunpoint.

At this point, writer-director Gavin Hood could have opted for trite sentimentality, but instead he delves deeper into Tsotsi's psyche, as the young man might have already gone too far to turn back now. Tsotsi is a pulsating, electrifying film propelled by Chweneyagae's powerful, mesmerizing performance.   


Rated R.
Rotten Tomatoes Reviews | Internet Movie Database entry

It's A Gift
Directed by Norman Z. McLeod
Typical of Fields' films, he lampoons all the things in life he disliked the most: children, family life, salesmen, bothersome neighbors, and shrewish, nagging wives. The comedian/actor appears in virtually every scene as a hassled grocer, with a running monologue lampooning human behavior with masterful verbal humor. 

Unrated
Rotten Tomatoes Reviews | Internet Movie Database entry

Heart of Game
Directed by Ward Serrill
When Seattle filmmaker Ward Serrill met Bill Resler, a college tax professor who moonlights as a girls' basketball coach, he didn't realize that he was about to embark on an incredible seven-year journey. Serrill, camera in hand, followed Resler - who looks more like Santa Claus in Birkenstocks than a whistle-blasting high school coach - into the Roosevelt High School gym and soon discovered a group of girls whose unbridled toughness, passion and energy he came to call The Heart of the Game.
Then, one day, onto the Roughriders' court (and into the film) walked Darnellia Russell - a tough, inner-city girl whose off-court struggles would eventually threaten to crash the star athlete's plans to play college ball and be the first person in her family to get a college education. At the center of The Heart of the Game is Darnellia's unforgettable true story—the loss of her eligibility and her legal battle to get back on court to play the game that means everything to her. With Coach Resler, her team and her family standing by her side, she takes on enormous personal obstacles as well as the ruling body of high school sports in Washington.

Rated PG-13   
Rotten Tomatoes Reviews | Internet Movie Database entry

Duck Season
Directed by Fernando Eimbcke
Flama and Moko are fourteen years old; they have been best friends since they were kids. They have everything they need to survive yet another boring Sunday: an apartment without parents, videogames, porn magazines, soft drinks and pizza delivery. The electricity company, Rita, the neighbor, Ulises, a pizza deliveryman, eleven seconds, the Real Madrid-Manchester game, some chocolate brownies and a horrible painting of ducks, all combine to break the harmony of what promised to be a placid Sunday, and reveal issues such as the parents' divorce, loneliness, the confusion between adolescent love and friendship, as well as frustration in adult life. "Temporada de Patos" is a movie that shows that, when the lights go off, we can see the stars.

Rated R
Rotten Tomatoes Reviews
| Internet Movie Database entry


The Notorious Bettie Page

Directed by Mary Harron
The story of Bettie Page, uber-successful 1950's pin-up model, one of the first sex icons in America, and the target of a Senate investigation (based on her bondage photos).

Rated R
Rotten Tomatoes Review
| Internet Movie Database entry

Summaries courtesy of Internet Movie Database.



Spring 2006
Semester Schedule

DATE
FILM
GOALS
January 24
Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room
13
February 28
Intimate Strangers
10, 13
March 21
The Wedding Banquet
10, 13
April 18
Syriana
9, 13

Film Summaries
Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room
Directed by Alex Gibney (USA)
Based on the best-selling book of the same name by Fortune reporters Bethany McLean and Peter Elkind, a multidimensional study of one of the biggest business scandals in American history.

Rated R.
Rotten Tomatoes Reviews | Internet Movie Database entry


Confidences trop intimes (Intimate Strangers)

Directed by Patrice Leconter (France)
Because she picked the wrong door, Anna ends up confessing her marriage problems to a financial adviser named William Faber. Touched by her distress, somewhat excited as well, Faber does not have the courage to tell her that he is not a psychiatrist.

Rated R. In French with English subtitles.
Rotten Tomatoes Reviews | Internet Movie Database entry


Hsi Yen (The Wedding Banquet
)
Directed byAng Lee
Simon and Wei-Tung are a gay couple living together in Manhattan. To defer the suspicions of Wei-Tung's parents, Simon suggests a marriage of convenience between Wei-Tung and Wei-Wei, an immigrant in need of a green card. When Wei-Tung's parents come to America for the wedding, they insist upon an elaborate banquet, resulting in several complications.

Rotten Tomatoes Reviews
| Internet Movie Database entry


Syriana

Directed by Stephen Gaghan (USA)
From writer/director Stephen Gaghan, winner of the Best Screenplay Academy Award for Traffic, comes Syriana, a political thriller that unfolds against the intrigue of the global oil industry. From the players brokering back-room deals in Washington to the men toiling in the oil fields of the Persian Gulf, the film's multiple storylines weave together to illuminate the human consequences of the fierce pursuit of wealth and power.
Rated R.

Rotten Tomatoes Review
| Internet Movie Database entry

Summaries courtesy of Internet Movie Database.

 

Questions?
Anna Cox
434 395 2648

David Shoenthal
434 395 2193

 

 

 


Longwood Center for the Visual Arts 129 North Main Street Farmville VA 23901 434 395 2206