Tuesday, 17 May 2011

WAITATI FILM SOCIETY: Programme for second half of 2011


Programme for second half of 2011

Waitati Film Society membership only $60 - for 27 nights of entertainment!
Half-year memberships are now available at $35. See drama, comedy,
history or just plain entertainment in a warm, pleasant environment with
convivial company. Membership allows you free entry to Film Society
screenings as well as discounts at Film Festivals and some Dunedin cinemas.

For more information, ring Brigitte 4822 829 or Leonie 4822 508 or visit
our website: www.nzfilmsociety.org.nz/waitati.htm

Tuesday Aug 9


For the Manhattan Project the USA government teamed up scientists with the
aim to build the first atomic bomb. Joseph Rotblat was the only scientist
to leave the Project on moral grounds. He moved on to investigate the
medical uses of radiation, create a peace movement with Bertrand Russell
and become a Nobel Peace Laureate. This film covers the Pugwash Conferences
that he co-founded and which have achieved so much in reducing nuclear
proliferation and defusing tense moments during the Cold War. 89 minutes.

Tuesday Aug 16

ELDER BLOSSOM (Germany 2007)

A poem by Prussian poet Bobrowski pays homage to elderflowers, regarded as
patron saints of houses and children. Yet East Prussia is still a land of
troubled people following the major disruptive social upheavals during and
after WWII. This film by Volker Koepp traces the fate of the still young
generation born in the 1990's who are only familiar with the past through
history books. Their parents and grandparents were forcibly re-settled so
never felt at home, became unemployed and many have succumbed to
alcohol. 89 minutes.

Tuesday Aug 23

THE CENTER (Germany 2003)

This handheld-filmed travelogue wanders over a vast area, more than
2,000Km long, within which many villages and towns consider themselves as
the "Centre of Europe". Polish director Stanislaw Mucha meets and
questions an array of people with many stories, histories and experiences,
but some of them seem far from identifying themselves as Europeans. But who
can define "Europe" and so pinpoint its centre? 85 minutes.

Tuesday Aug 30

THE WOMAN WITH THE 5 ELEPHANTS (Switzerland/Germany 2009(

The title refers to the five great novels of Dostoyevsky, one of the many
Russian authors whose works were famously translated into German by the now
86-year-old Ukranian Svetlana Geier. Her personal past, in a no-man's-land
between Stalin's Russia and Hitler's Germany, and passion for literature,
gave her the drive and language skills for her life's work. The film not
only reviews her work, which encompasses a key period in European history,
but also movingly covers her own survival in politically turbulent
times. 93 minutes.

Tuesday Sept 6

MEMORIES OF MURDER (South Korea 2003(

Unlike its USA counterparts, this thriller from South Korea uses the story
to make an indictment of the politics and society that incubated the
perpetrator of a series of rape-homicides. It would seem that the crimes
remain unsolved because of police sexism and brutality, a culture of
prejudice and suspicion rife during the late-80's military dictatorship of
Chun Doo-hwan. 127 minutes.

Tuesday Sept 13


Two vintage silent films starring Ossi Oswalda - the "German Mary
Pickford" - under director Ernst Lubitsch. In the first, Ossi plays the
tomboy, drinking, smoking and indulging in other blokes' things, unfazed by
the presence of a male guardian charged with cutting her down to size.
44 minutes.

In the second, she is the daughter of an American who buys her a Prussian
prince of her very own. Unfortunately the chosen bridegroom does not
fulfil Daddy's expectations. 60 minutes.

Tuesday Sept 20


Satyajit Ray, an old favourite of our Society, returns to our screen with
a typical powerful comment on the corrupt values easily acquired in Indian
society. Shyamal begins as a well motivated marketing manager with
ambitions to become a director of his company. When one consignment of
product is defective, he has to find ways of not losing the vital export
order. His progress is watched by visiting sister-in-law, Tutul, who was
originally jealous of her sister for having married the idealistic Shyamal.
Black and white, 112 minutes.

Tuesday Sept 27

WILDCAT (Germany 1921)

For our second Ernst Lubitsch film, he turns his perceptive cinematic eye
towards the army for this wildly satirical anti-militaristic comedy.
Rischka, the Wildcat, like many women around the fort, is in love with the
handsome Lieutenant Alexis (indeed most children wave flags at him and cry
"Papa"!). But en route to his new outpost, the lieutenant is kidnapped by
a band of rogues. The gang's leader doesn't know that his daughter has
fallen for the captive officer. 81 minutes.

Tuesday Oct 11


As a reward for bravery in battle, a young soldier, Alyosha, is allowed
six days leave from the Eastern Front to return home. This film is about
his journey, the devastation of warfare he sees and people he meets. Though
set within the horrors of WWII, it is about love in various forms - love
between a disabled soldier and his wife, a mother's unconditional love for
her child and love between Alyosha and a homeless girl he happens to
meet. 94 minutes.

Tuesday Oct 25

PATU! (New Zeaalnd 1983)

The rugby tour by the South African Springbok team in 1981 divided New
Zealand society like no other issue before it and gave rise to the greatest
civil unrest since the waterfront dispute of 1951. Those who objected to
the acceptance of a team from a country governed by a minority on the basis
of racial apartheid were match against those who, perhaps naively, objected
to sport being tainted by politics. Large numbers of news cameramen,
filmmakers and photographers recorded the ugly confrontations and from
their contributions Merata Mita edited this compilation. (Note: This is the
full version before she re-cut it for international audiences.) 113 minutes.

Tuesday Nov 8


Having screened two of Lubitsch's films this season, we are now going to
be treated to an analysis of his life's work. Despite the director's death
in 1947, Robert Fischer was able to assemble this visual biography through
interviews with both Ernst's daughter and granddaughter as well as calling
upon personal anecdotal stories from friends and contemporaries, facts from
historians and historical documents, all illustrated by clips from 20 of
his films. 110 minutes.

Tuesday Nov 22


Recent New Zealand short films on Kiwi kids who get up to no good in
amusing and disturbing ways. Careful with That Axe (Jason Stutter); Little
Angel (Suzi J Featherstone); Licked (Dan Salmon); The Winter Boy (Rachel
House); Roof Rattling (James Blick); Careful with That Power Tool (Jason
Stutter); The Six Dollar Fifty Man (Mark Albiston, Louis Sutherland);
Careful with That Crossbow (Jason Stutter). 68 minutes.

Tuesday Dec 6


This is a really funny spoof on the fantasy nature of film town Hollywood,
a place seemingly divorced from the real world. A film crew takes over a
rural town in Vermont to make a period feature called The Old Mill, only to
find that the mill, illustrated in the local brochure, had in fact been
burned down some 50 years previously. Writer/director David Mamet
amusingly explains the success of the movie industry in the US - a country
where everybody is full of fantasies and reality comes a poor second.
102 minutes.

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