It’s a Season of Deep Journeys for the AFS Screening Series @ LPCA, v4.0

The Film Society’s Fall 2017 season is set with “The Lost City of Z” (Sep. 28 & 30)—an epic journey into the jungles of South America—and “A Quiet Passion” (Oct. 20-21) and “Cézanne et Moi” (Nov. 15 & 17)—two transcendent journeys into the souls of three artistic geniuses.

Charlie Hunnam as Percy Fawcett in

Charlie Hunnam as Percy Fawcett in “The Lost City of Z”

LAKE PLACID, NY — Real-life historical figures from the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, all of whom are in passionate pursuit of something—be it artistic truth and beauty or a geographic find that would upend the current scientific establishment—is a common link among the three powerful, critically acclaimed films that form the Fall 2017 lineup of the Adirondack Film Society (AFS) Screening Series at the Lake Placid Center for the Arts (LPCA).

On Thursday (a new night for the series) and Saturday, September 28 and 30, at 7 p.m., the season opens with “THE LOST CITY OF Z,” the epic true story of British explorer Percy Fawcett’s two-decade search for a lost city in the Amazon. October (Friday-Saturday, 10/20-21, at 7 p.m.) brings “A QUIET PASSION,” in which Cynthia Nixon, who is probably best known for her work in the film and TV versions of “Sex in the City,” delivers a triumphant performance as the great American poet Emily Dickinson. The fall season concludes with “CÉZANNE ET MOI,” a compelling foreign-language drama (in French, with English subtitles) that traces the lifelong friendship between the two renowned nineteenth-century French artists—painter Paul Cézanne and writer Emile Zola. The foreign-language film (in French, with English subtitles) will be screened on another new night for the series, Wednesday, November 15, as well as Friday, November 17, both at the special time of 7:30 p.m.

Tickets to each screening are $10 per person, available at the door as well as in advance from the LPCA box office—518-523-2512, lakeplacidarts.org—located at 17 Algonquin Drive, just off NYS Route 86 at the intersection near the Quality Inn, the Dack Shack and Desperados Mexi-Quinn Restaurant in the internationally fabled resort village of Lake Placid. To learn more about the AFS, please contact Operations Manager Fred Balzac at (518) 523-3456 or visit adirondackfilmsociety.org.

 

Robert Pattinson as aide-de-camp Henry Costin

Robert Pattinson as aide-de-camp Henry Costin

A Tribute to the Exploratory Spirit

Based on author David Grann’s nonfiction bestseller of the same name, “THE LOST CITY OF Z” tells the astounding tale of Percy Fawcett (played by Charlie Hunnam), who journeys into the Amazon at the dawn of the 20th century and discovers evidence of a previously unknown, advanced civilization that may have once inhabited the region. Despite being ridiculed by a scientific establishment that regards indigenous populations as “savages,” the determined Fawcett—supported by his devoted wife (Sienna Miller), son (Tom Holland) and aide-de-camp (Robert Pattinson)—returns time and again to his beloved jungle in an attempt to prove his case, an ongoing saga that comes to a head in 1925. Also featured in the cast is Angus Macfadyen (who portrayed Robert the Bruce in “Braveheart”) as James Murray, a fellow explorer who accompanies Fawcett on one of his later trips.

An epically scaled tale of courage and passion, told in classic filmmaking style by writer/director James Gray—whose previous films include “We Own the Night” (2007) and “The Immigrant” (2013) — “THE LOST CITY OF Z” is a stirring tribute to the exploratory spirit and to a conflicted adventurer driven to the verge of obsession.

Sienna Miller

Sienna Miller

In her review in The New York Times, Manohla Dargis described the film as “a lush, melancholic story of discovery and mystery, with a mesmerizing Charlie Hunnam.” David Sims of The Atlantic magazine called “THE LOST CITY OF Z” “a mysterious, enthralling masterpiece and “the best work” of James Gray’s career. The film, Sims writes, “is a miraculous movie, at once moving, intimidating, and gorgeous to behold. It’s a tale of colonial exploration that’s aware of the sins of the past, and a portrait of a driven, obsessive, flawed male protagonist that avoids the clichés of the genre. It feels like a work of classic Hollywood cinema, but without the arch, mannered quality that can come with a contemporary director trying to harken back to the past. Gray’s film is beguiling and poetic, capable of gluing you to the screen for every second of its languorous… running time and lingering in the brain for weeks after.”

“THE LOST CITY OF Z” has a running time of 2 hours and 20 minutes and is rated PG-13.

Father & son: Charlie Hunnam (left) and Tom Holland

Father & son: Charlie Hunnam (left) and Tom Holland

 

Cynthia Nixon as Emily Dickinson

Cynthia Nixon as Emily Dickinson

A Luminous Universe

In “A QUIET PASSION,” Cynthia Nixon personifies the wit, intellectual independence and pathos of Dickinson, whose genius only came to be recognized after her death. Celebrated British director Terence Davies (“House of Mirth,” “The Deep Blue Sea”) exquisitely evokes the poet’s deep attachment to her close-knit family along with the manners, mores and spiritual convictions of her time that she struggled with and transcended in her poetry.

The film reunites Davies, who also wrote the screenplay, with his “Deep Blue Sea” cinematographer Florian Hoffmeister to create a luminous rendering of Dickinson’s universe. The cast features Jennifer Ehle (of “Zero Dark Thirty,” “Pride and Prejudice”), Duncan Duff and Keith Carradine.

Critical raves for “A QUIET PASSION”:

  • New York Times Critics’ Pick: “Visually gorgeous.” — A.O. Scott, The New York Times
  • Critics’ Pick: “Lovely!” — Melissa Anderson, Village Voice
  • “A fiercely intelligent, handsome and affecting rendering of Dickinson’s extraordinary, ordinary life.” — Lindsey Bahr, Associated Press
  • “An absolute drop-dead masterwork.” — Richard Brody, The New Yorker
  • “Cynthia Nixon is marvelous.” — Keith Ulrich, Slant
  • “A richly idiosyncratic portrait of Emily Dickinson…played with steely wit and piercing vulnerability by Cynthia Nixon.” — Justin Chang, Los Angeles Times
  • “One of the most unique and mesmerizing films of the year.” — Jordan Hoffman, Vanity Fair
  • “Enrapturing! The work of a master craftsman.” — Ty Burr, The Boston Globe

A QUIET PASSION” has a running time of 2 hours and 6 minutes and is rated PG-13.

 

9_tAn Electrifying Portrait

“CÉZANNE ET MOI” charts the parallel paths of the lives, careers and passionate friendship of the post-impressionist painter Cézanne and the novelist Zola. The two boys grew up in Aix-en-Provence. Emile was fatherless and poor. Paul came from a wealthy family. As young men, dreaming of glory and beautiful women, they left the south to conquer the art scene in Paris. Soon Emile had it all — success, money and the perfect wife— and he embraced the very bourgeoisie he mocked in his books. Meanwhile, Cézanne rejected the Parisian scene to focus only on his work, ignored by his peers and the establishment.

The film was written and directed by Danièle Thompson (“Avenue Montaigne”) and stars Guillaume Gallienne of the Comédie-Française as Cézanne and Guillaume Canet as Zola, with Alice Pol as Alexandrine Zola, Emile’s wife; Déborah François as Hortense Cézanne, Paul’s wife; and Sabine Azéma as Anne-Elisabeth, Paul’s mother.

Guillaume Gallienne as Paul Cézanne

Guillaume Gallienne as Paul Cézanne

Stephen Holden of The New York Times wrote, “The film, an intimate, searching portrait of the turbulent friendship between the two geniuses…completely avoids the tone of pious reverence typically adopted in stories about famous artists and writers. Instead it focuses on the insecurity, competitiveness and complicated love lives of these two ambitious men of opposite temperament.”

He goes on to state that “Mr. Gallienne, who dominates the film, gives an electrifying portrait of Cezanne as a scruffy, driven wild man….Charismatic but scary, flashing a furious, wide-eyed glare that could turn people to stone….”

“CÉZANNE ET MOI” has a running time of 1 hour and 53 minutes and is rated R (for language, sexual references and nudity).

We Got MOVIES!

Version 16.0 of the Annual Lake Placid Film Forum Is Overflowing with Movies for Film Lovers and Films for Movie Buffs

Screening of “The Good Mind” at LPFF ‘16 with the film’s director and a key participant—Gwendolen Cates and Chief Jake Edwards, center—with (from left) AFS Operations Mgr. Fred Balzac, Artistic Director Kathleen Carroll and Chair John Huttlinger. Photo: Ben Stechschulte, courtesy of the Adirondack Film Society.

Screening of “The Good Mind” at LPFF ‘16 with the film’s director and a key participant—Gwendolen Cates (director of LPFF’17 selection “We Are Unarmed,” Sat., 6/10, 12 noon, LPCA) and Chief Jake Edwards, center—with (from left) AFS Operations Mgr. Fred Balzac, Artistic Director Kathleen Carroll and Chair John Huttlinger. Photo: Ben Stechschulte, courtesy of the Adirondack Film Society.

Lake Placid, NY—The annual Lake Placid Film Forum (LPFF), the Adirondack region’s premier film-related event now celebrating its sixteenth incarnation, has long been known for screening great films—typically, the kinds of independent, envelope-pushing, often quirky, sometimes demanding, but always rewarding films you can’t see in your local movieplex. However, for its 2017 edition, the LPFF offers a breathtakingly diverse as well as dynamic lineup of film screenings and related programs that should whet the interest of virtually every kind of North Country moviegoer.

Since the Film Forum premiered back in the year 2000, its stock-in-trade has been the American (or sometimes English-speaking Canadian) independent narrative or documentary feature film—works that tour the now-ever-burgeoning film-festival circuit before settling in to populate “art house” cinemas across the world. And LPFF ’17 has several such films, which have always been of great interest to its core audience of adventurous filmgoers and more discriminating cineastes.

But in an effort to program some films with the potential to reach out to a wider audience of moviegoers—and also because of a recognition on the part of the Adirondack Film Society (AFS) board and staff/consultant programmers of including a program acknowledging the special nature of its home base, the Olympic Village; plus the unforeseen set of particulars surrounding the passing of one of the giants of the film directing world—the LPFF finds itself screening several wildly popular (and, at least in one case, a huge blockbuster of a) classic films.

Here’s a quick rundown of many of the films being shown at this year’s LPFF, which runs from Wednesday, June 7, through Sunday, June 11, at venues including the historic Palace Theatre downtown on Main Street, the Lake Placid Center for the Arts (LPCA), the Whiteface Lodge and Northwood School:

 

  • Crowd-pleasers: With residents of Lake Placid and neighboring communities who have been tremendous supporters of the LPFF and other AFS programs over the years firmly in mind, including winter sports enthusiasts—as well as local filmgoers who don’t typically attend AFS screenings—the Film Forum programmers have planned a special way to kick off the five-day event. On opening night of the festival, the Film Society will give a big “Thank you, Lake Placid” with a screening of the 2016 true-story hit movie, EDDIE THE EAGLE” (Wed., 6/7, 7 pm, Palace) about the famed Olympic ski jumper Michael “Eddie” Edwards who actually trained in Lake Placid. Although the film is set largely in Europe and Lake Placid is not mentioned, the LPFF views “Eddie the Eagle” as a celebration of much of what Lake Placid stands for, with its glorious history of winter sporting events, including ski jumping, according to AFS Chair John Huttlinger. Headlining the evening among panel discussion speakers and other invited dignitaries will be former United States Ski and Snowboard Association ski jumping coach Larry Stone.

In recent years, the Film Society has wanted to offer more programming for families with children, such

Dr. Peter Ostrum, who played Charlie in

Dr. Peter Ostrum, who played Charlie in “Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory” (1971), with a friend. The good doctor will introduce a special FREE early Sunday (6/11) family matinee of the film 11 a.m. at the Palace.

as the silent films with live accompaniment that’s been offered at the LPFF in 2015 and 2016—building on the successful school-day screenings of “Selma” in 2015 and, this past March, “Hidden Figures” presented in partnership with John Brown Lives! and, for this year, also the Adirondack Diversity Initiative. With even younger children in mind, as well as folks of any age who are young in heart, the AFS is thrilled to present what promises to be a truly special, even magical, program on Sunday morning: a tribute to the late, great actor, Gene Wilder, with a screening of the 1971 family classic WILLY WONKA AND THE CHOCOLATE FACTORY” (Sun., 6/11, 11 am, Palace) introduced by Dr. Peter Ostrum, who played young Charlie in the film and who is now a veterinarian in not-too-far-off Lowville, NY, near Watertown. Dr. Ostrum will also participate in a Q&A session immediately following the film—so kids, ready those question, not only about Peter’s experience making “Willy Wonka” but also about the life and work of his co-star, Gene Wilder.

This year, a major running theme of the LPFF is international exchange and understanding, highlighted by the presence of directors and producers flown into the North Country from Havana, Cuba and Moscow, Russia. Along those lines, the AFS is pleased to present the second annual installment of “The Essentials’/Classic Film” program with screening of the much-beloved Gregory Peck-Audrey Hepburn-director William Wyler classic ROMAN HOLIDAY” (Sat., 6/10, 8:15 pm, Palace) hosted by Jeremy Arnold. Mr. Arnold is a long-established Turner Classic Movies contributor (as well as longtime summer resident of Lake Placid) who in 2016 saw the publication of his book, “The Essentials: 52 Must-See Movies and Why They Matter,” a tie-in with the popular Saturday night TCM show that is returning with Alec Baldwin stepping in as host following the recent death of Robert Osborne.

Speaking of tributes, the LPFF will screen two contemporary classics by one of Hollywood’s greatest, most beloved directors, Jonathan Demme, who passed away this past April 26th and who was a guest of, and special friend to, the Film Forum: the 1991 blockbuster THE SILENCE OF THE LAMBS” (Fri., 6/9, 9:30 pm, Palace), winner of the Oscar for Best Picture, Best Actress (Jodie Foster), Best Actor (Anthony Hopkins), Best Adapted Screenplay (Ted Tally) and Best Director), hosted by film-industry expert Larry Jackson, who worked on the film while serving as an executive at Orion Pictures & was a friend of Demme’s; and, as the LPFF’s closing program Sunday evening, STOP MAKING SENSE” (Sun., 6/11, 8:15 pm, Palace), one of the all-time great concert films—about the quintessential late 1970s/early 1980s New Wave bands, the Talking Heads.

 

  • Independent American and Canadian (English-language) narrative features:

PATERSON” (Thu., 6/8, 6:30 pm, LPCA), the latest work from the path-breaking indie filmmaker Jim Jarmusch (“Stranger Than Paradise”) starring Adam Driver as a bus driver named Paterson who lives in Paterson, New Jersey, and who writes poetry inspired by Paterson native son William Carlos Williams; co-presented with the Adirondack Center for Writing.

MAUDIE” (Fri., 6/9, 7 pm & encore Sat., 6/10, 11 am, both at Palace), reported to be Atlantic Canada’s hottest movie, a romance/bio-pic set in the stunning scenic beauty of Nova Scotia about beloved folk artist Maud Lewis (played by Oscar-nominated British actress Sally Hawkins); co-starring Ethan Hawke as her husband and directed by relative newcomer Aisling Walsh.

TITLE VII” (Sat., 6/10, 1:15 pm, Palace), a powerful drama set in an African-American-owned consulting firm that shows why same-race discrimination cannot only ruin a company but possibly also destroy lives, directed by Nicole Franklin, who will be on hand in person to introduce her film and do a Q&A session right after it.

LOVING” (Sat., 6/10, 2:30 pm, LPCA), from acclaimed writer/director Jeff Nichols comes this compelling drama celebrating the real-life courage and commitment of interracial couple Richard and Mildred Loving (played by Joel Edgerton and, in an Oscar-nominated performance, Ruth Negga), whose struggle to live as a married couple in their hometown turned into the civil rights case, Loving v. Virginia, which went all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court; co-presented by John Brown Lives!

THE DINNER” (Sat., 6/10, 5 pm & encore Sun., 6/11, 3:30 pm, both at LPCA), a mystery-drama about two sets of wealthy parents who meet for dinner to decide what to do about a crime their sons have committed; directed by Oren Moverman and starring Richard Gere, Laura Linney, Chloe Sevigny (of “Love and Friendship”) and Steve Coogan.

THE LOVERS” (Sun., 6/11, 1:15 pm, Palace), a romantic comedy-drama directed by Azazel Jacobs (son of legendary experimental filmmaker Ken Jacobs) about a husband and wife (Debra Winger and Tracy Letts) who, while each embroiled an extramarital affair, are sent reeling when they suddenly fall for the least likely person imaginable—each other.

A QUIET PASSION” (Sun., 6/11, 3:15 pm, Palace), the critically acclaimed drama starring Cynthia Nixon (“Sex and the City”) as the one-of-a-kind American genius, poet Emily Dickinson, directed by Terence Davies; co-presented by the Adirondack Center for Writing.

Follow-up news releases will focus on additional highlights of LPFF ’17, including international/foreign-language titles, feature documentaries, short films, student films, film-related programs such as master classes and collaborations with multiple film groups and other nonprofit/educational organizations. As in the past two years, admission to panel discussions, workshops and master classes remains free and single tickets to all screenings are $10 per person; however, this year the AFS is introducing an all-Forum screenings pass for $79, payable by cash or by check made out to the Adirondack Film Society. To learn more about tickets or the program overall, please contact AFS Operations Manager Fred Balzac at (518) 523-3456 or fredbalzac@aol.com or visit adirondackfilmsociety.org.

__________

*This project is made possible, in part, with funds from the Decentralization Program, a regrant of the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature and administered by the Adirondack Lakes Center for the Arts.

North Country Public Radio is a media sponsor of the 2017 Lake Placid Film Forum.

 

 

 

“A Man Called Ove” (4/28-29) Leads Into LP Film Forum, 6/8-11

The Adirondack Film Society (AFS) Screening Series at LPCA, Version 3.0, concludes with this heartwarming, yet hugely funny comedy-drama from Sweden—yes, Sweden!—which was nominated this year for the Best Foreign-Language Film Oscar. Like so many great international films, “A MAN CALLED OVE” is a highly visual feast that translates so well to American screens—it’s main setting, after all, is a contemporary suburban development—that you quickly forget you’re reading subtitles. Screenings are Friday and Saturday, April 28-29, at 7 p.m. at the Lake Placid Center for the Arts (LPCA). All seats are $7 (info: 518-523-2512, lakeplacidarts.org).

198x137_A_Man_Called_Ove_-_1Stepping from the pages of Fredrik Backman’s international best-selling novel of the same name, Ove is the quintessential grumpy old man who lives next door. An isolated retiree with strict principles and a short fuse, who spends his days enforcing block association rules that only he cares about and visiting his wife’s grave, Ove has given up on life. Enter a boisterous young family next door who accidentally flattens Ove’s mailbox while moving in and earning his special brand of ire. Yet from this inauspicious beginning an unlikely friendship forms, and we come to understand Ove’s past happiness and heartbreaks. What emerges is a heartwarming tale of unreliable first impressions and the gentle reminder that life is sweeter when it’s shared.

One of Sweden’s biggest locally produced box office hits ever, “A MAN CALLED OVE” is directed by Hannes Holm, who finds the beating heart of his source material in198x137_A_Man_Called_Ove_-_3 Swedish star Rolf Lassgård. For his affecting performance embodying the lovable curmudgeon Ove, Lassgård was honored with the Best Actor award at the 2016 Seattle International Film Festival. “A MAN CALLED OVE” was nominated in 2016 for the Academy Award for Best Foreign-Language Film, losing out to another highly acclaimed international film, “The Salesman,” from Iran.

248x150_Ove_TrailerCritical raves for “A MAN CALLED OVE”:

“The dopes saying that movies are dead haven’t seen the moving, tender ‘A Man Called Ove.’”—Village Voice

“A touching comic crowd-pleaser….Irresistible…a heartwarming tale.”—Variety

“A morbidly funny and moving success. Director Holm’s grip on the film’s tricky, tragicomic tone is masterful.”— RogerEbert.com

“Darkly funny, tragic, and ultimately heartwarming.”—Entertainment Weekly

“Touching, funny and engrossing.”—Detroit News

Awards & festival honors include:

  • Nominated – Best Foreign Language Film and Best Achievement for Makeup &198x137_A_Man_Called_Ove_-_5 Hairstyling (Love Larson & Eva von Bahr), 89th Academy Awards®
  • Winner – Best European Comedy, 29th European Film Awards
  • Winner – Best Actor (Rolf Lassgård, pictured on the right with director Hannes Holm), 2016 Seattle International Film Festival Golden Space Needle Award
  • Winner – Audience Award, 2016 Mill Valley Film Festival, California, and the 2016 Traverse City Film Festival, Michigan
  • Winner – Audience Award for Best Film, 2016 Scottsdale International Film Festival, Arizona
  • Winner – Audience Award, Best Actor (Rolf Lassgård), Best Makeup (Love Larson & Eva Von Bahr), 2016 Guldbagge Awards

Next up for the Adirondack Film Society: the 16th Annual Lake Placid Film Forum, opening Thursday, June 8th, and running through Sunday, June 11th, with screenings and other special film-related programs at LPCA, the historic Palace Theater and other Lake Placid venues. Details to be announced soon!

The ‘Marvelous’ Mr. Mortensen Is “Captain Fantastic”

The AFS Screening Series at LPCA continues Fri. & Sat., Nov. 4-5, at 7 pm with Captain Fantastic, a poignant comedy-drama starring Viggo Mortensen (“The Lord of the Rings”) as an unconventional father whose family is torn from its off-the-grid paradise in the Pacific Northwest and forced to enter the “real world.”

Ben Cash (Mortensen), his wife Leslie and their six children live deep in the wilderness of Washington State. Isolated from society, Ben and Leslie devote their existence to raising their kids — home-schooling them to think critically, training them to be physically fit and athletic, guiding them in the wild without technology and demonstrating the beauty of co-existing with nature. When a family crisis occurs, Ben must take his sheltered offspring into the outside world for the first time.

remember-viggomortensen-is-capt-fantastic-full-358x201The film co-stars Frank Langella as Ben’s disapproving father-in-law. For his work directing the film, Matt Ross was honored with the Prize for Best Director among the films selected for the Un Certain Regard Awards at the 2016 Cannes Film Festival. Captain Fantastic is also a Critics’ Pick of the New York Times.

“Viggo Mortensen is a marvel.”—USA Today ♥ “Viggo Mortensen is magnificent.”—Rolling Stone ♥ “Wise and deeply moving.” —Washington Post ♥ “Triumphant and spirited.”—The Huffington Post ♥ “Sweet and funny.” —Entertainment Weekly

Tickets are $7, available in advance and at the door. For reservations and more information, please call the Lake Placid Center for the Arts (LPCA) box office at (518) 523-2512 or visit lakeplacidarts.org. The Adirondack Film Society Screening Series (AFS) at LPCA will resume on January 20-21, 2017 with Love and Friendship, directed by Whit Stillman, who also adapted the screenplay from Jane Austen’s novel Lady Susan, and run monthly through April. And save the dates for the 2017 Lake Placid Film Forum: Thursday through Sunday, June 8-11!

For more information on any of these programs or the AFS in general, please contact Operations Manager Fred Balzac at (518) 523-3456 or fredbalzac@aol.com.

morning-exercise-capt-fantastic-crederiksimkins-full-1260

From Carlos Danger to Captain Fantastic

The AFS Screening Series at LPCA continues Fri. & Sat., Oct. 21-22, at 7 pm with Weiner, hailed as “the best documentary ever made about a political campaign,” and Nov. 4-5 with Captain Fantastic, a drama starring Viggo Mortensen about family caught between its off-the-grid paradise in the Pacific Northwest and the “real world.”

Just in time for Election Day, the Adirondack Film Society (AFS) Screening Series at the Lake Placid Center for the Arts (LPCA) Version 3.0 gets real with this fascinating look at the essentially tragic downfall of a smart, articulate and talented American politico.

1913s-5-3-may-3-nyc-lg-300x236As an added bonus, both evenings will kick off with another politically oriented film—albeit from the other end of the “personal responsibility” spectrum, Inez Milholland: Forward Into Light, a 15-minute documentary about a now largely forgotten American icon from nearby Lewis, New York who broke with convention by publicly and passionately advocating for women’s rights, pacifism, racial justice, unions and free speech in the early twentieth century.

Tickets are $7, available in advance and at the door. For reservations and more information, please call the LPCA box office at (518) 523-2512 or visit lakeplacidarts.org.

weiner-with-pressRaw and Unfettered

Sexts, lies and “Carlos Danger” (Weiner’s now notorious pseudonym): watch the wildest political meltdown in recent history as it unfolds. It’s 2013 and Anthony Weiner—still reeling from the sex scandal that ended his political career two years earlier—is back in the spotlight as he mounts an audacious comeback campaign for New York City mayor. But it’s not long before history repeats itself and new sexting allegations leave Weiner and his aides scrambling to contain the damage.

Granted unfettered access to the candidate and his campaign, filmmakers Josh Kriegman and Elyse Steinberg capture a jaw-dropping, behind-the-scenes look at the political machine as it breaks down. Winner of the 2016 Sundance Film Festival Grand Jury Prize for U.S. Documentary (100 minutes, rated R).

Since the release of the film in May 2016, Weiner’s story has taken a further bizarre turn with news of yet another sexting incident occurring in late August, resulting in the separation announcement by the ex-Congressman’s wife, Huma Abedin, a close aide to Hillary Clinton, and their marriage becoming an issue in the presidential campaign—at least to the extent that Republican nominee Donald Trump and his allies have attempted to make it one.

“Mesmerizing. The best documentary about a political campaign ever made.”—Indiewire

“Hilarious. One of the best documentaries ever made about a political scandal.”—Rolling Stone

“Invigorating, thoroughly involving, and captivating. The level of access here makes the film hard to turn away from.”—The Hollywood Reporter

“Five stars. A gift that keeps on giving. A compelling, deep dive into a scandal.”—The Guardian

 

A Family in Turmoil

The 2016-2017 AFS Screening Series at LPCA continues on Friday and Saturday evening, November 4-5, with the poignant family drama Captain Fantastic, starring Viggo Mortensen. Deep in the forests of the Pacific Northwest, a father (played by Mortensen) devoted to raising his six kids with a rigorous physical and intellectual education—off the grid—is forced to leave his paradise and enter the “real world,” beginning a journey that challenges his idea of what it means to be a parent.

For his work directing the film, Matt Ross was honored with the Prize for Best Director among the films selected for the Un Certain Regard Awards at the 2016 Cannes Film Festival. Captain Fantastic is also a Critics’ Pick of the New York Times.

“Viggo Mortensen is a marvel.”—USA Today ♥ “Viggo Mortensen is magnificent.”—Rolling Stone ♥ “Wise and deeply moving.”—Washington Post ♥ “Triumphant and spirited.”—The Huffington Post ♥ “Sweet and funny.”—Entertainment Weekly

The Screening Series at LPCA will resume in January and run monthly through April. And save the dates for the 2017 Lake Placid Film Forum: Thursday through Sunday, June 8-11!

For more information on any of these programs or the AFS in general, please contact Operations Manager Fred Balzac at (518) 523-3456 or fredbalzac@aol.com.

It’s a Hog Dog of a Season!

The Adirondack Film Society Screening Series (Version 3.0) returns to the LPCA with Todd Solondz’s Wiener-Dog, the behind-the-scenes political documentary Weiner and a “marvel” of a performance by Viggo Mortensen in Captain Fantastic.

wiener-dog-01-on-skateboardLAKE PLACID, NY—The Adirondack Film Society (AFS) Screening Series at the Lake Placid Center for the Arts (LPCA) returns for its third season with three diverse, compelling independent films. First up, on Friday and Saturday, September 9-10, at 7 pm, is “Wiener-Dog,” a quirky comedy drama written and directed by Todd Solondz (“Welcome to the Dollhouse”) that follows the life of an adorable dachshund as she passes from one oddball owner to another, profoundly affecting their radically dysfunctional lives along the way. The ensemble cast of well-known names and recognizable character-actor faces includes Danny DeVito, Ellen Burstyn, Greta Gerwig (“Mistress America”), Julie Delpy, Kieran Culkin, Tracy Letts and Zosia Mamet.

Then on October 21-22, the series continues with “Weiner,” the fascinating behind-the-scenes documentary about ex-Congressman Anthony Weiner’s disastrous 2013 race for Mayor of New York City. The Fall 2016 segment of Year 3.0 of the series concludes on November 4-5 with “Captain Fantastic,” starring Viggo Mortensen as a father of six who—after having been devoted to raising them deep in the forests of the Pacific Northwest with a rigorous physical and intellectual education, off the grid—is forced to leave his self-imposed paradise and reenter the “real” world, beginning a journey that challenges his idea of what it means to be a parent.

They’ve All Come to Look for a…Wiener-Dog

Wiener-Dog” is a dark, starkly funny story of a single dog and the many different people she touches over her short lifetime. This particular incarnation of “man’s” best friend—a lovable dachshund who proves to be women’s and children’s best friend, too—starts out by teaching a young boy some contorted life lessons before being taken in by a compassionate vet tech named Dawn Wiener. Dawn reunites with someone from her past and sets off on a road trip. After leaving Dawn, our unsinkable Wiener-Dog encounters a floundering film professor, as well as an embittered elderly woman and her needy granddaughter—all longing for something more. Writer-director Solondz’s perversely dark comedy offers an appallingly honest look at the American experience, brought to life by its standout cast that includes Ellen Burstyn, Danny DeVito, Kieran Culkin, Julie Delpy, Greta Gerwig, Tracy Letts and Zosia Mamet.

From One Hot-Diggity-Dog to “Carlos Danger”

Just in time for Election Day, the (AFS) Screening Series at LPCA (Version 3.0) continues with a fascinating look at the essentially tragic downfall of a smart, articulate and talented American politico.

Sexts, lies and Carlos Danger: watch the wildest political meltdown in recent history as it unfolds. It’s 2013 and Anthony Weiner—still reeling from the sex scandal that ended his political career two years earlier—is back in the spotlight as he mounts an audacious comeback campaign for New York City mayor. But it’s not long before history repeats itself and new sexting allegations leave Weiner and his aides scrambling to contain the damage.

Granted unfettered access to the candidate and his campaign, filmmakers Josh Kriegman and Elyse Steinberg capture a jaw-dropping, behind-the-scenes look at the political machine as it breaks down. Winner of the 2016 Sundance Film Festival Grand Jury Prize for U.S. Documentary, “Weiner” has a running time of 100 minutes and is rated R for mature content.

Since the release of the film in May 2016, Weiner’s story has taken a further bizarre turn with news of yet another sexting incident occurring in late August, resulting in the separation announcement by the ex-Congressman’s wife, Huma Abedin, a close aide to Hillary Clinton, and their marriage becoming an issue in the presidential campaign—at least to the extent that Republican nominee Donald Trump and his allies attempt to make it one.

The reviews are in for “Weiner”:

“Mesmerizing. The best documentary about a political campaign ever made.”—Indiewire

“Hilarious. One of the best documentaries ever made about a political scandal.”—Rolling Stone

“Invigorating, thoroughly involving, and captivating. The level of access here makes the film hard to turn away from.”—The Hollywood Reporter

“Five stars. A gift that keeps on giving. A compelling, deep dive into a scandal.”—The Guardian

The 2016-2017 AFS Screening Series at LPCA continues on Friday and Saturday evening, November 4-5, with “Captain Fantastic,” starring Viggo Mortensen.

For more information on any of these programs or the AFS in general, please contact Operations Manager Fred Balzac at (518) 523-3456 or fredbalzac@aol.com or visit adirondackfilmsociety.org.

 

Indy Feature Film Shot in Schroon Lake to Premiere There

Lorenzo Rodriguez and Sarah Joy Byington share a tender moment in

Lorenzo Rodriguez and Sarah Joy Byington share a tender moment in “The Night We Met”

The Adirondack Film Society (AFS) “Easy Screening” Series continues its celebration of the advent of digital at the Strand Theatre in Schroon Lake, NY, on Saturday & Sunday, August 13-14, at 8 p.m. with the world premiere of an independent film shot in & around Schroon Lake.

The Night We Met, an indy feature directed and co-written by Albany-area-based filmmaker Jon Russell Cring, tells the tenderly romantic story of the kind of unforgettable night shared by two young lovers that we’ve all had or wished we had at least once in our youth.

The AFS, which served as the nonprofit conduit for New York State Council on the Arts (NYSCA) grant funding that helped make the Strand’s upgrade to digital film-projection equipment possible, is pleased to be presenting this premiere of The Night We Met as the latest in a planned series of special screening programs in partnership with Larry and Liz McNamara, the movie theater’s owners.

Meet the Filmmakers

Introducing North Country filmgoers to filmmakers and other industry professionals—typically, in small, intimate, up-close-and-personal settings—is one of the chief calling cards of the Adirondack Film Society, the people who have brought area movie buffs the highly celebrated Lake Placid Film Forum on an annual basis most years since 2000. The “AFS Easy Screening Series at the Strand” is no different.

In August, director Cring will be on hand at the Strand, along with his wife Tracy Nichole Cring—who served as the film’s co-writer, director of photography and editor—to introduce their film and answer questions about the thrills and travails of indy filmmaking in the Adirondack North Country after each evening’s screening.

The film begins each evening at the Strand Theatre, 1102 Route 9 (518-532-9077) at 8 pm, followed by the Q&A. Admission to each evening’s program is $10 per person; tickets are available for advance purchase during the day at the Schroon Lake Chamber of Commerce, 1075 Route 9 (518-532-7675) and in the evening at the Strand, as well as at the door on the evening of each screening. For more information, please call the AFS at (518) 523-3456 or 588-7275 or visit adirondackfilmsociety.org.

A Real Schroon Lake Story Debuts in August

When producer Stan Denis decided to help make the script of The Night We Met a reality, there was one place he thought of as the perfect backdrop. Director Jon Russell Cring went with Denis to scout Schroon Lake and met Maureen and Robert Diaz, owners of The Adirondack General Store. “The lake and mountains were picturesque, Maureen and Robert were so excited to be involved, and we walked out their front door and saw a phone booth,” Jon recalled with a hearty laugh.

“A phone booth was written into the script and we thought it would be the hardest thing we’d have to find, but there it was,” said Stan Denis.

The store was featured in scenes, and its owners and staff cooked a delicious hot meal for cast and crew daily. The Seagle Music Colony and The Stand Theater make guest appearances along with many other local landmarks. The film was shot in September 2014.

Director Jon Russell Cring and his wife, Tracy Nichole Cring, have made 18 feature films together. The duo wrote the script based on a night Tracy had in her late teens meeting a guy for the first time and driving around having conversations and adventures. “I think everyone has had one of those magic nights where sparks fly and, if they haven’t had one, they wish they had,” said Tracy, who in addition to her role as co-screenwriter, worked as the film’s director of photography and its editor.

The Night We Met stars Texas-based actor Sarah Joy Byington, who was cast from the very first audition the filmmakers received via video submission in the leading role of Stacey. New York City-based actor Lorenzo Rodriguez plays her love interest, Nick. Rodriquez’s video audition was the last such submission the filmmakers received. Schroon Lake-based actor Haley Beauregard plays best friend Steph.

The Adirondack Film Society is proud to be presenting—in partnership with Larry and Liz McNamara of the Strand Theatre—the world premiere of The Night We Met, especially given that it was shot in Schroon Lake. The screening time on Saturday and Sunday, August 13-14, is 8 p.m. All seats are $10, and tickets will be available in advance during weekdays at the Schroon Lake Chamber of Commerce, 1075 Route 9 (518-532-7675), and every evening at the Strand, 1102 Route 9 (518-532-9077), as well as at the door. For more information, please call the AFS at (518) 523-3456 or 588-7275 or visit www.adirondackfilmsociety.org.

New and Classic Movies Like You’ve Never Seen Them Before

The AFS “Easy Screening” Series celebrates the advent of digital at the Strand Theatre with two all-time great comedies introduced by movie-book author & ultimate film buff John DiLeo July 16-17 and…

 A world-premiere of an indy film shot in Schroon Lake August 13-14

SCHROON LAKE, NY—Summertime…and the screenings are easy—to paraphrase the great Gershwin song from “Porgy and Bess.”

In celebration of the Strand Theatre’s recent acquisition of digital film-projection equipment, the Adirondack Film Society (AFS), which was the nonprofit conduit for New York State Council on the Arts (NYSCA) grant funding of the upgrade, is pleased to be presenting a series of special screening programs in partnership with the Strand.

Grouch, Harpo and their comic foil in a scene from

Grouch, Harpo and their comic foil in a scene from “A Night at the Opera”

First up on Saturday evening, July 16—in glorious digital cinema package (DCP) format—is the madcap comedy, “A Night at the Opera,” starring the inimitable Marx Brothers in one of their funniest movies and one of the truly great comic movies of all time. Then on Sunday evening, July 17, the AFS will screen one of the greatest films ever made—the Depression-era comedy-drama classic, “Sullivan’s Travels,” written and directed by Hollywood wunderkind Preston Sturges, which itself is a love letter to the art of movie-making and which served as a partial inspiration for the Coen Brothers’ 2000 classic, “O Brother, Where Art Thou.”

Saturday and Sunday evening, August 13-14, brings an entirely different flavor to the Strand’s big (and brand-new) screen with the world premiere of “The Night We Met,” an independent feature directed and co-written by Albany-area-based filmmaker Jon Russell Cring and shot in and around Schroon Lake—about the kind of unforgettable night shared by two young lovers that we’ve all had or wished we had at least once in our youth.

Meet the Movie-Book Author and the Filmmakers

Introducing North Country filmgoers to filmmakers and other industry professionals—typically, in small, intimate, up-close-and-personal settings—is one of the chief calling cards of the Adirondack Film Society, the people who have brought area movie buffs the highly celebrated Lake Placid Film Forum on an annual basis most years since 2000. The “AFS Easy Screening Series at the Strand” is no different.

Author and lecturer John DiLeo has published five books on film and is currently at work on his sixth (photo by An Eye for Details).

Author and lecturer John DiLeo has published five books on film and is currently at work on his sixth (photo by An Eye for Details).

In August, director Cring will be on hand at the Strand, along with his wife Tracy Cring—who served as the film’s co-writer, director of photography and editor—to introduce their film and answer questions about the thrills and travails of indy filmmaking in the Adirondack North Country after each screening. And serving as emcee for the premier collaboration between the movie theater and the AFS in July is author and lecturer John DiLeo, whose books include “And You Thought You Knew Classic Movies” and “100 Great Film Performances You Should Remember But Probably Don’t.” Mr. DiLeo will introduce each film and lead a Q&A session following each screening. As an added bonus, on each evening of the weekend prior to the film screening that night, Mr. DiLeo will present an informal 45-to-50-minute program of memorable film clips and movie-lore tidbits on a theme.

On Saturday the 16th, join in on the fun of “Bloopers, Secrets, and Surprises from Hollywood’s Golden Age,” which will set the stage for the hilarity to come with Groucho, Chico and Harpo in “A Night at the Opera.” On Sunday the 17th, John DiLeo shifts the focus from outtakes to outstanding but underappreciated screen appearances by some of Hollywood’s shiniest starts with “Great Film Performances You Should Remember But Probably Don’t,” adapted from his book of the same name.

The fun and festivities begin each evening at the Strand Theatre, 1102 Route 9 (518-532-9077) at 6:15 pm with a reception, followed by Mr. DiLeo’s movie clips-and-anecdotes program at 7 pm and the film at 8 pm, capped off by the Q&A. Admission to each evening’s program is $10 per person; tickets are available for advance purchase during the day at the Schroon Lake Chamber of Commerce, 1075 Route 9 (518-532-7675) and in the evening at the Strand, as well as at the door on the evening of each screening. For more information, please call the AFS at (518) 588-7275 or visit www.adirondackfilmsociety.org.

Anarchic Slapstick of Marx Bros. Meets High-Level Humor of Sturges in July

With the accent clearly on comedy in the July screenings, the pairing of two classic comedies from Hollywood’s Golden Age, yet with two radically different approaches to comedic cinematic storytelling, demonstrates the breadth and depth of the genre. Here’s how John DiLeo describes each film:

  • A NIGHT AT THE OPERA (Sat., 7/16, 8 pm): The Marx Brothers had their biggest box-office success with this splendidly mounted MGM production released in 1935. A screamingly funny movie that is partially set aboard an ocean liner, it features the justly renowned (and hilarious) overcrowded stateroom sequence. Assisting the trio in their merry lunacy is, of course, Margaret Dumont as a wealthy widow.

With a screenplay co-written by legendary playwright George S. Kaufman (“You Can’t Take It With You”), the laughs reach their climax in the chaotic opening night of Verdi’s classic opera, “Il Trovatore,” which includes “Take Me Out to the Ballgame” in the score, as well as Harpo’s swordfight with the conductor. Mixing the high art of opera with the lowdown antics of slapstick proved to be an inspired combination, resulting in a comedy classic for the ages.

  • SULLIVAN’S TRAVELS (Sun., 7/17, 8 pm): Writer-director Preston Sturges is responsible for this brilliant 1941 comedy about a hotshot movie director (Joel McCrea) tired of making lightweight entertainments, yearning to make a “Grapes of Wrath”-style saga known as “O Brother, Where Art Thou?” Though all forces are against him, he is determined to broaden his scope, soon getting himself into more than he bargained for. McCrea, the most underrated of the Golden Age’s leading men, and Veronica Lake—who is about to explode as one of the WWII era’s biggest female stars—are dynamite together.
Joel McCrea has a rude awakening in this scene from

Joel McCrea has a rude awakening in this scene from “Sullivan’s Travels”

“Sullivan’s Travels” is the rare comedy able to meld humor, poignancy, and romance into one irresistible stew. Celebrating the film’s 75th anniversary, this curated screening will demonstrate why “Sullivan’s Travels” remains a timelessly affecting and affectionate movie, a human comedy if ever there was one.

And here’s how Mr. DiLeo describes his two “appetizer” programs of film clips and movie trivia that will whet your appetite for the film classic that follows each evening:

  • “BLOOPERS, SECRETS, AND SURPRISES FROM HOLLYWOOD’S GOLDEN AGE” (Sat., 7/16, 7 pm) is a delightful compilation of classic-movie clips featuring an assortment of gaffes, head-scratchers, and in-jokes—from Yul Brynner’s now-you-see-it-now-you-don’t earring to Cyd Charisse’s mysteriously altered costume mid-dance, plus a few misbehaving extras and stagehands. Adding to the fun are bit parts from future superstars, surprise entrances by legends, and, of course, Hitchcock’s famed cameos. It’s a funny, lighthearted “insider’s peek” at the dream factory, including appearances from Cary Grant, Lucille Ball, Fred Astaire, and Ava Gardner.
  • bk cvr 100GreatFilmPerformancesYouShouldRemember by John DiLeo.recd fr author 062416“GREAT FILM PERFORMANCES YOU SHOULD REMEMBER BUT PROBABLY DON’T” (Sun., 7/17, 7 pm) looks at outstanding but neglected and underappreciated work from some of Hollywood’s greatest stars. The clips focus on Vivien Leigh, Tyrone Power, Marilyn Monroe, Joel McCrea, Audrey Hepburn, and Robert Redford, placing the attention on great work that seems to have been overlooked in favor of their most revered screen performances. See these stars as you may never have seen them before and, in the process, broaden your experience of their artistry, magnetism, and sheer talent.

Ultimate Film Buff and Movie Fan

John DiLeo with Gary Cooper's Oscar for Best Actor, in

John DiLeo with Gary Cooper’s Oscar for Best Actor, in “High Noon”

John DiLeo’s first book was “And You Thought You Knew Classic Movies” (St. Martin’s, 1999, revised in 2013), hailed by Pauline Kael as “the smartest movie quiz book I’ve ever seen.” His second book was “100 Great Film Performances You Should Remember—But Probably Don’t” (Limelight Editions, 2002), which Adolph Green called “a valuable and touching work.” Turner Classic Movies host Robert Osborne said, in the Hollywood Reporter, that the book “delightfully throws the spotlight on some remarkable film work,” and the Washington Post’s reaction was, “Not only is this helpful criticism, but ‘100 Great Film Performances’ can serve as balm for anyone who has ever been disgruntled by the Academy’s choices on Oscar night.”

Turner Classic Movies devoted a night of prime-time programming to films featured in John’s third book, “Screen Savers: 40 Remarkable Movies Awaiting Rediscovery” (Hansen Publishing Group, 2007). His fourth film book, “Tennessee Williams and Company: His Essential Screen Actors” (Hansen Publishing Group, 2010), led to his presentations and panels at the Tennessee Williams festivals in Provincetown and New Orleans. His most recent film book is Screen Savers II: My Grab Bag of Classic Movies (Hansen Publishing Group, 2012).

John has been a contributing book reviewer for the Washington Post’s Book World and frequently hosts classic-film series, appears on radio programs, lectures on cruise ships, conducts film-history seminars, and has been an annual participant in the Black Bear Film Festival (Milford, PA) where he interviewed Farley Granger (2005), Arlene Dahl (2006), Marge Champion (2010), Keir Dullea (2013), and Jane Powell (2015) on the festival’s stage. Born in 1961 in Brooklyn, John was raised on Long Island and graduated from Ithaca College in 1982 with a B.F.A. After 27 years together, he and his partner Earl McCarroll were married in 2009. John’s website is johndileo.com and his Twitter handle is @JOHNDiLEO.

Coming Attraction: A Real Schroon Lake Story Debuts in August

When producer Stan Denis decided to help make the script of “The Night We Met” a reality, there was one place he thought of as the perfect backdrop. Director Jon Russell Cring went with Denis to scout Schroon Lake and met Maureen and Robert Diaz, owners of The Adirondack General Store. “The lake and mountains were picturesque, Maureen and Robert were so excited to be involved, and we walked out their front door and saw a phone booth,” Jon recalled with a hearty laugh.

“A phone booth was written into the script and we thought it would be the hardest thing we’d have to find, but there it was,” said Stan Denis.

The store was featured in scenes, and its owners and staff cooked a delicious hot meal for cast and crew daily. The Seagle Music Colony and The Stand Theater make guest appearances along with many other local landmarks. The film was shot in September 2014.

Director Jon Russell Cring and his wife, Tracy Nichole Cring, have made 18 feature films together. The duo wrote the script based on a night Tracy had in her late teens meeting a guy for the first time and driving around having conversations and adventures. “I think everyone has had one of those magic nights where sparks fly and, if they haven’t had one, they wish they had,” said Tracy, who in addition to her role as co-screenwriter, worked as the film’s director of photography and its editor.

It's a wrap: cast and crew of

It’s a wrap: cast and crew of “The Night We Met” at the end of filming

The Night We Met” stars Texas-based actor Sarah Joy Byington, who was cast from the very first audition the filmmakers received via video submission in the leading role of Stacey. New York City-based actor Lorenzo Rodriguez plays her love interest, Nick. Rodriquez’s video audition was the last such submission the filmmakers received. Schroon Lake-based actor Haley Beauregard plays best friend Steph.

The Adirondack Film Society is proud to be presenting—in partnership with Larry and Liz McNamara of the Strand Theatre—the world premiere of “The Night We Met,” especially given that it was shot in Schroon Lake. The screening time on Saturday and Sunday, August 13-14, is 8 p.m. All seats are $10, and tickets will be available in advance during weekdays at the Schroon Lake Chamber of Commerce, 1075 Route 9 (518-532-7675), and every evening at the Strand, 1102 Route 9 (518-532-9077), as well as available at the door if the two shows don’t sell out in advance. For more information, please call the AFS at (518) 588-7275 or visit www.adirondackfilmsociety.org.

We Got Movies!

The region’s premier film-related event, the Lake Placid Film Forum—now marking its 15th anniversary—takes place June 8-12 with its biggest & best lineup of new, recent and classic movies in years…

LAKE PLACID, NY—With its initial success as a major cultural event here in the Adirondack North Country—let alone the odds of sustaining that significance for 15 years—being as likely as the proverbial million-to-one shot, the “underdog” of film festivals is trained, prepped and ready to step into the ring once more.

Taking its cue from the boxing classic “Rocky”—the Best Picture Oscar-winner whose 40th anniversary will open the five-day event with a free outdoor screening in Mid’s Park in beautiful downtown Lake Placid Wed., June 8th (~9 pm)—the annual Lake Placid Film Forum (LPFF), presented by the Adirondack Film Society (AFS) through Sunday, June 12th, returns this year with its biggest and best lineup of new, recent and classic films in years. Venues include the venerable Art-Deco-style Palace Theatre at 2430 Main Street—soon to be celebrating its 90th anniversary—and the multipurpose, regionally cherished Lake Placid Center for the Arts (LPCA) at 17 Algonquin Drive.

Screenings include: narrative features and documentaries; international foreign-language as well as North American English-language movies; a slew of Canadian pictures, including a special double-feature on Saturday afternoon of two highly regarded new films curated by an emeritus Ontario-based film professor and AFS Board Member Tom Hanrahan; a silent film classic—Charlie Chaplin’s “The Kid”—plus a short, with live piano accompaniment by Ben Model, who frequently performs such programs at New York City’s Museum of Modern Art; and a special “Essentials” screening of one of the greatest movies ever made, Carol Reed’s “The Third Man,” starring Joseph Cotten and Orson Welles—a program that will be moderated by Jeremy Arnold, the author of the brand new book, “The Essentials: 52 Must-See Movies and Why They Matter,” which is a tie-in with the popular “Essentials” program that airs Saturday nights on cable TV’s Turner Classic Movies (TCM). Following the screening, Mr. Arnold will be joined by producer and former industry exec Larry Jackson, who worked with Welles on his unfinished film “The Other Side of the Wind” as well as “Filming Othello,” and AFS Artistic Director Kathleen Carroll, former film critic for the New York Daily News, for a discussion of “The Third Man” and what makes a film an “Essential.”

Among the documentary features are true-life stories about such subjects as:

  • The witty, urbane, long-established comedian, Robert Klein, who influenced at least a whole generation of comics who followed him such as Jerry Seinfeld and Richard Lewis, some of whom appear in the film;
  • The indigenous Onondaga people of northern New York State and their efforts to save and protect the environment of the land and planet that they regard as sacred ground;
  • Legendary photographer Robert Frank whose work includes a famous shot of the Village Green in nearby Jay, New York, which was published in the New York Times;
  • Revered filmmaker Sidney Lumet, considered one of the greatest “actor’s directors” to work in New York City as well as Hollywood, whose rich output of powerful, gritty contemporary movies includes “Twelve Angry Men,” “Serpico,” “Dog Day Afternoon, “Network” and “Verdict”;
  • The USA and East German women’s swim teams that competed against each other in the 1976 Olympic Games in Montreal, in a narrative that details the triumph of victory and the agony of defeat until it unravels into a tale of tragedy when the East German women are shown to have been enmeshed in illegal doping during the Games; and
  • A fascinating take on the impact of the digital world on real life by the great German narrative feature director, Werner Herzog, known for such classic works of obsession as “Aguirre, the Wrath of God” and “Fitzcarraldo.”

Over the years, the Lake Placid Film Forum has become known for providing an intimate setting for audience members to meet well-known filmmakers as well as other film-industry professional who—while not necessarily household names—are artists of the first order in their craft and often expert at communicating about it. Expected guests this year—in person or, in one case, via Skype—include:

  • Film critic Marshall Fine, director of the documentary “Robert Klein Can’t Stop His Leg” (scheduled for Sat., 6/11, 8:30 pm at the Palace*);
  • Gwendolen Cates, the director of “The Good Mind,” about the Onondaga, who will be joined by Chief Jake Edwards, who is featured in the film (Fri., 6/10, 9:15 pm & Sun., 6/12, 4 pm at LPCA);
  • Laura Israel, director of “Don’t Blink,” the Robert Frank doc (Sun., 6:15 pm, LPCA), slated to be accompanied by panelist Nathan Farb, the renowned Adirondack photographer whose footage of Frank giving a lecture is included in the film;
  • Documentary maven Nancy Buirski, director of “By Sidney Lumet,” this year’s Closing Film (Sun., 8:30 pm, LPCA), who will appear via Skype to introduce her film;
  • Fifteen-time Emmy Award-winner Brian Brown, director of “The Last Gold,” about two very different approaches to Olympic women’s swimming (Fri., 7 pm, at LPCA & Sun., 7:00 pm, at the Palace); and
  • Pianist-organist Ben Model, who returns to the LPFF following his crowd-pleasing performance at last year’s event accompanying a Clara Bow feature and a Charlie Chase short and who, with the Chaplin classic “The Kid” plus another short, promises to top his previous Film Forum appearance (Thu., 6/9, 7:30 pm, LPCA).

Among the narrative features (or, in the case of “Where to Invade Next,” strictly speaking a documentary) that will be screened, performers and directors include: Cate Blanchett, Robert Budreau, Andrew Cividino, Stephen Elliot, Ethan Hawke, Todd Haynes, Harvey Keitel, Martin Landau, Guy Maddin, Rooney Mara, Michael Moore, Atom Nagoyan, Christopher Plummer, Paolo Sorrentino and John Turturro.

The organizers of this year’s LPFF are excited about the program and ready to roll. AFS co-founder and Chair John Huttlinger says, “We really focused on programming this year, and it has paid off: we have a bounty of great films.” Co-founder and Artistic Director Kathleen Carroll agrees: “As has been the case in recent years, it’s been the documentaries I’ve seen in festivals and screenings in New York City that have caught my eye…but it’s also been a banner year for Canadian narrative features—and we are featuring both genres.” And Vice Chair Nelson Page exclaims, “Given the lineup of films—new, classic and in between—this promises to be one of our best years yet!”

Tickets to each screening are $10 per person, available at the door, with the exception of the Canadian double feature Sat. at 1:15 pm at the Palace, for which admission is $15 for both films, $10 for the second film (space permitting). The Palace Theatre accepts only cash (518-523-9271; please visit its Facebook page); tickets to screenings at the LPCA can be charged as well (518-523-2512, www.lakeplacidarts.org). To learn more about this year’s Lake Placid Film Forum—including a complete schedule and more details about the films once both are posted, as well as periodic updates—please visit www.adirondackfilm society.org and our Facebook page; for additional info, including about the Film Society itself and its other programs and activities, please call AFS Operations Manager Fred Balzac at (518) 588-7275 or e-mail fredbalzac@aol.com.

*Please note: times, locations, guests and films/events are subject to change. Please check the AFS website, www.adirondackfilmsociety.org, for schedule updates.

Recent Media Coverage

AFS Screening Series: “Cold Warrior Weekend”

Bridge of Spies screening at the Palace Theatre, Lake Placid, Sun., Feb. 14th, at 2 pm:

– “The Surprising Connection Between Lake Placid and ‘Bridge of Spies,’” a report by Jack LaDuke on “Mountain Lake Journal,” Mountain Lake PBS, Plattsburgh, NY, published online March 4, 2016

– “Conversation with ‘Bridge of Spies’ James Donovan’s Granddaughter,” North Country Correspondent Pat Bradley’s interview with Beth Amorosi, on WAMC (Albany public radio), Feb. 11, 2016

– “Preview: ‘Bridge of Spies’ Cold War discussion in Lake Placid on Sunday,” interview by Todd Moe with Beth Amorosi on North Country Public Radio, Canton, NY, Feb. 12, 2016

– “‘Bridge of Spies’ screening, panel discussion with family Sunday,” Adirondack Film Society-Lake Placid Institute press release, Adirondack Daily Enterprise Weekender, Saranac Lake, NY, Feb. 11, 2016

– “Special ‘Bridge of Spies’ screening set for Lake Placid,” AFS-LPI press release, Press-Republican Out & About, Plattsburgh, NY, Feb. 11, 2016

Free to Rock screenings at LPCA, Fri.-Sat., Feb. 12th-13th, at 7 pm, introduced by director Jim Brown, with a post-screening Q&A:

– “‘Free to Rock’ documentary Friday, Saturday at LPCA,” the lead story in the Weekender section, by Tom Salitsky, Adirondack Daily Enterprise, Feb. 11, 2016, featuring an interview with the film’s producer-director, Jim Brown

 

Previous News Releases

Adirondack Film Society Screens Best Picture Oscar-Winner, “Spotlight”

The Spotlight investigative team--played by (L to R) Mark Ruffalo, Rachel McAdams, Michael Keaton and Brian D'Arcy Jame--goes to work.

The Spotlight investigative team–played by (from left) Mark Ruffalo, Rachel McAdams, Michael Keaton and Brian D’Arcy James–goes to work.

Lake Placid, NY—The Adirondack Film Society (AFS) Screening Series Version 2.0 at the Lake Placid Center for the Arts (LPCA) concludes for the season Friday and Saturday, April 15-16, at 7 pm with Spotlight, winner of the Academy Award for Best Picture of 2015. Tickets are $7 and are available by calling the LPCA Box Office at 518.523.2512 or online at www.lakeplacidarts.org. For more info on the AFS, please call 518.588.7275.

The movie tells the riveting true story of the team of Boston Globe reporters and editors who uncovered an unimaginable conspiracy to cover up clergy child abuse. Winner of the Academy Awards for Best Picture and Best Original Screenplay—by Tom McCarthy, who directed the film—and Josh Singer, Spotlight was also nominated for Best Director, Best Actor in a Supporting Role (Mark Ruffalo), Best Actress in a Supporting Role (Rachel McAdams) and Best Film Editing.

In 2001, Marty Baron, the new Editor of The Boston Globe, assigns a team of journalists—the “Spotlight” unit—to investigate allegations against John Geoghan, an unfrocked priest accused of molesting more than 80 boys. Led by Spotlight team editor Walter “Robby” Robinson (Michael Keaton), reporters Michael Rezendes (Ruffalo) and Sacha Pfeiffer (McAdams) and researcher Matt Carroll (Brian D’Arcy James) interview victims and try to unseal sensitive documents. The journalists make it their mission to provide proof of a cover-up of sexual abuse within the Roman Catholic Church.

The Globe’s Spotlight team is the oldest continuously operating newspaper investigative journalism unit in the United States. The film’s portrayal of the unit’s investigation into cases of widespread and systemic child sex abuse in the Boston area is based on a series of stories by the actual Spotlight team that earned the newspaper the 2003 Pulitzer Prize for Public Service.

A Visit with editor Ben Bradlee Jr.: from L to R, McAdams, Ruffalo, James, Keaton and Slattery (as Bradlee)

A visit with editor Ben Bradlee Jr.: from left, McAdams, Ruffalo, James, Keaton and John Slattery (as Bradlee).

“‘Spotlight’ is a gripping detective story and a superlative newsroom drama.” —A.  O. Scott, New York Times

“Like any good reporting job, ‘Spotlight’ slowly builds momentum from nothing, gathering disparate bits of information into an emotional juggernaut of a story.” —David Sims, The Atlantic

“Old-style journalism triumphs in the story of the real-life team who knocked on doors and scoured the cuttings library to reveal a scandal that may have begun centuries ago.” —Peter Bradshaw, The Guardian

“It’s these survivors who give ‘Spotlight’ its beating heart. Roiling emotions are also felt among reporters who desperately want to get the story right and just as desperately want to get it first. That tension makes for an insanely gripping high-wire act and the year’s most thrilling detective story….This landmark film takes a clear-eyed look at the digital future and honors the one constant that journalism needs to stay alive and relevant: a fighting spirit.”—Peter Travers, Rolling Stone

The AFS Screening Series at LPCA will resume in September. Next up for the AFS: the annual Lake Placid Film Forum, happening Wednesday through Sunday, June 8-12, at LPCA and other venues. For more information on any of these programs or the Adirondack Film Society in general, please contact Operations Manager Fred Balzac at (518) 588-7275 or fredbalzac@aol.com or visit www.adirondackfilmsociety.org.