Through the end of the month, Metrograph has invited a number of writers and artists—as well as director Jack Hazan—to present screenings of the 4K restoration of A BIGGER SPLASH, Hazan’s time capsule of David Hockney and Peter Schlesinger’s London and New York life in the early 1970s.
Hazan will participate in a post-screening Q & A on Saturday, June 22, after the 7 pm show, and Ryan McNamara will introduce the 7:15 pm screening on Sunday, June 23.
Jeremy O. Harris will introduce the 9:30 pm screening on Friday, June 28, and on Saturday, June 29, at 5:30, there will be a Q & A and book signing with Catherine Cusset, author of Life ofDavid Hockney: A Novel.
On Sunday, June 30, filmmaker Matt Wolf will introduce the 6:15 pm show.
A Bigger Splash, directed by Jack Hazan, from top: David Hockney in London painting Peter Schlesinger in the Portrait of an Artist(Pool with Two Figures); photographs used in composition of the painting; scenes from A BiggerSplash (5), including Schlesinger leaning on sliding glass door. Images courtesy Metrograph Pictures.
The origin of Joseph Mankiewicz’s legendary screenplay ALL ABOUT EVE is a true story the actress Elisabeth Bergner told author-actress-playwright Mary Orr about a stage door waif, Martina Lawrence, who insinuated herself into Bergner’s life to a threatening degree. In Orr’s fictional telling, the faux-naïf schemer—Eve—takes over the great actress’ career, husband, and stardom, ending the tale with a thousand-dollar-a-week contract from a Hollywood studio.
Since studio Code dictated that villains must always be punished, 20th Century Fox couldn’t film that version in 1950. So Mankiewicz devised a brilliant ending: the star—Margo Channing—wouldn’t lose everything to the interloper, and Eve ends up with her own Eve to thwart.
Ivo van Hove—the European avant-gardist-turned-unlikely Broadway powerhouse—and his designer Jan Versweyveld have transformed ALL ABOUT EVE for the London stage. Gillian Anderson pulls out all the stops, playing Margo at 50—not the film’s 40—and more obsessed with surface aging as a harbinger of irrelevance than Bette Davis was in her indelible star turn. The essential difference between EVE‘s sparkling 1950s urbanity and its 2019 iteration may be explained by Ben Brantley’s take on van Hove’s sensibility:
“He is a tragedian, first and foremost, though I think we can make room for tragedians in a time when they’re a rare breed among directors… What I think fascinates him, and what often works for me, is the idea of monolithic personalities, damned to suffocate under their own passions (or egos).”
The National Theatre production of ALL ABOUT EVE co-stars Lily James in the title role. MonicaDolan is Margo’s best friend Karen, Rhashan Stone is her husband, playwright Lloyd Richards, Julian Ovenden is Margo’s lover-director Bill, Stanley Townsend is critic Addison DeWitt, and Sheila Reid is Birdie, Margo’s dresser (played in Mankiewicz’s film by Thelma Ritter). PJ Harvey composed the score.
This weekend, L.A. Theatre Works presents the NTLive screening of ALLABOUT EVE at UCLA.
On a weekend of UCLA Film and Television Archive screenings curated by Sandi Tan—publisher, film critic, and director of the acclaimed doc Shirkers (2018)—a standout is Tim Hunter’s cult eighties noir RIVER’S EDGE.
Favorably compared to In Cold Blood by Roger Ebert, the film centers on the non-reaction by a group of teens to a dead body in their midst, and stars Keanu Reeves, Ione Skye, Crispin Glover, and DennisHopper. (Skye will join Tan for an onstage discussion.)
RIVER’S EDGE will be preceded by Leos Carax’s 1999 shocker POLA X.
This week in Hollywood, Kalyane Lévy’s La Collectionneuse will screen the film her program is named for.
Co-presented by Women & Film and the American Cinematheque, Éric Rohmer’s LACOLLECTIONNEUSE (1967) is one of his beloved contes moraux, and stars Haydée Politoff, Patrick Bauchau, and Daniel Pommereulle.
Stay for post-screening drinks and music, with a DJ set by DJ Izella.
MODEL SHOP opens on a rough patch of Venice Beach in decay—an ambience its director maintains throughout this essential glimpse of untethered lives and anomie at the end of the sixties.
The first and last American film directed by Jacques Demy, MODEL SHOP stars Gary Lockwood and Anouk Aimée as two Los Angeles drifters. Agnès Varda made the trip over from France with Demy to scout locations for her own California story, Lions Love (… and Lies).