The Viennale (October 21 through November 3) has announced its first round of features and documentaries, but more interesting for now are the tributes and special programs. There'll be a tribute, for example, to the late cinematographer William Lubtchansky, who "realized no fewer than fourteen films with Jacques Rivette, eleven with Danièle Huillet and Jean-Marie Straub [the image above, by the way, is from Class Relations [Klassenverhältnisse, 1984)], and six with Jean-Luc Godard. In addition he repeatedly worked with Jacques Doillon, Claude Lanzmann, and Agnès Varda. With the presentation of about a dozen films from Lubtchansky's oeuvre, which totals more than a hundred works, the Viennale is paying tribute to one of the most important cameramen as well as an exceptional personality."
The other tribute is to Larry Cohen, who "has been regarded as one of Hollywood's most successful independent directors and most sought-after screen-writers, while resolutely remaining an absolute outsider and stranger to the American studio system. He invented the most subversive variations and extremely original film commentaries in cinematic formats ranging from blaxploitation films to horror movies, gangster films and science fiction, and yet refused persistently to be pigeon-holed into the restricted area of genre cinema. He is a classic example of both a multi-tasking filmmaker and a perfect 'cinematic auteur,' in a manner similar to that of his friend, the great Samuel Fuller."
The two special programs are Drifting States: The Canadian Filmmaker Denis Côté and Exposed: The Experimental Cinema of Siegfried A Fruhauf. Côté "began his artistic career in the underground music scene of Montreal. After working as a radio presenter and film critic for several years, in 2005 he realized his first feature film, Les etats nordique, which immediately won him the Golden Leopard at the Locarno film festival." His latest, Curling, took the best director and actor prizes in Locarno just last week and will screen in Toronto next month.
The Viennale promises that "Martin Arnold and Peter Tscherkassky will be the most notable representatives of Austrian filmmaking" at this year's edition. "In the meantime, however, a new generation of young avant-garde filmmakers has emerged, and Siegfried A Fruhauf (born in 1976) is certainly one of its most exciting and radical representatives. For a good ten years now, through short, extremely dense and multi-layered works, Fruhauf has occupied himself with the elements and effects of film."
From October 7 through November 4, the Viennale, in cooperation with the Austrian Film Museum, will present an Eric Rohmer retrospective, which follows, of course, The Sign of Rohmer in New York and The Human Comedies of Eric Rohmer, opening today at the Harvard Film Archive and running through August 30.
The first round of features to screen at this year's Viennale: Banksy's Exit through the Gift Shop, Olivier Assayas's Carlos, Apichatpong Weerasethakul's Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives, Matthew Porterfield's Putty Hill and Woody Allen's You Will Meet a Tall Dark Stranger. The docs: Vikram Jayanti's The Agony and Ecstasy of Phil Spector, Frederick Wiseman's Boxing Gym, Sharon Lockhart's Double Tide, Sean McAllister's Japan: A Story of Love and Hate and James Benning's Ruhr.
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