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[09] Holiday

Holiday
(USA/1938)
With Cary Grant, Katherine Hepburn
Directed by George Cukor

Before Grant, Hepburn and Cukor teamed up for The Philadelphia Story, they collaborated on this stellar romantic comedy. Grant upends Hepburn’s highfalutin’ upper-crust family, just as they are set to celebrate a posh, dignified New Year’s wedding announcement between he and Hepburn’s sister. Hilarity and late-Depression era escapism (so timely for us!) ensue. This holiday classic features some of the best performances its leads ever turned in, and a little bit of Vaudevillian acrobatics from Grant, to boot.

Preceded by:
Gasman
(Scotland/1997)
Directed by Lynne Ramsay

A father takes his children to a Christmas party that they do not care to attend. Their world changes by the people they meet there. Ramsay, who went on to direct Ratcatcher and Morvern Callar,  has a knack for making the most understated gestures powerful.

One Ham’s Family
(USA/1943)
Directed by Tex Avery

A hungry wolf gets more than he bargained for when he goes for some Christmas ham.

***

Menu:

Roast goose
Goosefat-roasted potatoes
Pear relish
Brussels sprouts
Green beans
Gingerbread cake
Lemon tart
Eggnog

BYO_.

[08] What we had for dinner

[08] Together

Before convening for Thanksgiving this year, pull up a chair for a Swedish take on the family-style meal.

Tilsammans (Together)
(Sweden/2000)
Directed by Lukas Moodysson

Together

It’s November 1975 in Stockholm. News of Franco’s death and the strains of ABBA fill the airwaves. Despite ostensibly sharing crunchy views of family, food, politics, relationships, sex, music and hygiene, a group of radical young hippies struggle to continue get along in their communal house, earnestly named “Tilsammans”, as the world changes outside their patchouli-scented walls. A monkey-wrench is thrown at their peace-lovin’ ideals when one of their members opens their beaded doorways to his more mainstream sister and her children, who are escaping her abusive husband.

Preceded by:
A Chairy Tale
(Canada/1957)
Directed by Norman McLaren and Claude Jutra
With Claude Jutra, A Chair
Music by Ravi Shankar and Chatur Lal
Presented by Aisling Yeoman

6

This delightful short from experimental filmmaker Norman McLaren is a pas-de-deux between Claude Jutra and an unaccomadating chair, animated by Evelyn Lambart.  

***

with guest chef Ganda Suthivarakom

Menu: Skal! A Swedish Thanksgiving

smor och sill (a herring sampler)
kottbullar (meatballs)
pressgurka (pickled cucumbers)
mashed potatoes
cranberry sauce
kladdkaka (chocolate cake)
Barbro’s tarta (almond meringue custard cake)

BYO_.

Choice Cuts goes Goth, with a little bit of Poe, a little bit of du Maurier, and a hearty helping of Venetian cuisine.

Don’t Look Now
(UK/Italy/1973)
Directed by Nicolas Roeg 
With Donald Sutherland, Julie Christie
Presented by Alberto Zambenedetti

dontlooknow

An Anglo-American couple travels in Venice, while the city is shaken by a mysterious series of murders. Possibly Nicolas Roeg’s finest directorial achievement, Don’t Look Now is not only a spine-chilling tale of the uncanny with paranormal overtones, but also a visual tour-de-force that both confounds and awes the spectator with its daring compositions, cuts, and color schemes.

Preceded by:
The Tell-Tale Heart
(USA/1941)
Directed by Jules Dassin

talltell1

This first film of Jules Dassin (Rififi) is an expressionistic take on the Edgar Allan Poe classic short story. The camera moves dynamically around a small space deftly putting the audience in the quaking boots of the terrified young man.

***

Menu:
Hearts on toast
Baccalà mantecato con polenta (creamed salt cod)
Sarde in saor (marinated sardines)
Bigoli in salsa (wheat spaghetti with anchovy sauce)
Radicchio al forno
Fritole (Carnevale doughnuts)

[06] Abouna

(Chad/2002)
Directed by Mahamat-Saleh Haroun

abouna

When they awake one morning to find their father gone, two young brothers wander the cinemas, soccer fields, and countrysides of their native Chad while trying to rebuild their ruptured family life. Mahamat-Saleh Haroun’s playful – yet remarkably unsentimental – portrayal of childhood camaraderie, familial perseverance, and teen romance is a gem of recent African cinema from Chad’s most prominent filmmaker.

Guest curated by David J. Reilly

Preceded by:
B 400
(Chad/1997)
Directed by Mahamat-Saleh Haroun
3 min.

A prank strands a girl outside her apartment building…can she get back in?

***

Menu:
Millet fritters
Seafood gumbo
Rice and peas
Date cake with roasted banana ice cream