Our ongoing overview of the cinema of 2013 reaches it’s conclusion with the year in repertory. Happy New Year!
Some of our favourite experiences of 2013 sprang from the archives. We’ll dive straight in.
Jeanne Dielman, 23, Quai du Commerce, 1080 Bruxelles. There’s nothing quite like seeing Chantal Akerman’s best-known film on the big screen. Immersive to the extreme, with the film a masterclass in the use of the temporal beat. Jeanne Dielman screened at the Leeds Film Festival, and as a part of A Nos Amours’ Complete Akerman, in which the London-based film collective aim to screen the whole of the Belgian filmmaker’s oeuvre over the course of the next 18 months.
Le Joli Mai. Chris Marker’s mammoth exploration of a Paris on the verge of a cultural revolution was reissued theatrically this year, with a restoration that saw the film reconstructed close to its original form (the film was cut soon after premiere). A post-Algeria counterpart to the earlier Chronicle Of A Summer.
Apocalypse Now. Screening at DocFest 2013 as part of a celebration of the work of Walter Murch, this late-night double bill was followed by a Q&A with the man himself, and screened alongside the infamous Hearts Of Darkness. Ridiculous cliche be damned, but Francis Ford Coppola’s war film truly does reveal fresh riches with each viewing. This time around we couldn’t help but note that the film plays out akin to a Neo-noir…
Napoleon. The cinema highlight of 2013. The staging of Kevin Brownlow’s painstaking restoration of Abel Gance’s Napoleon at the Royal Festival Hall in London just last month has already become the stuff of legend. Over the course of a whole Saturday Gance’s epic played out, with note-perfect accompaniment courtesy of Carl Davis conducted Philharmonic Orchestra.
Honourable mention – A Tribute To Harris Savides. Excuse the conflict of interest, but please allow us the indulgence. The first screening of the Badlands Collective saw a pair of pictures lensed by Harris Savides screen at the Institute Of Contemporary Arts in early October. David Fincher’s The Game was the primer, which led in to a very special screening of Jonathan Glazer’s Birth, which was preceded by an introduction from the filmmaker himself, and viewed on the director’s own 35mm silver nitrate print.