First news from Il Cinema Ritrovato 2019

One of the biggest film parties in the world, which screened nearly 500 titles last year, is coming back for its 33rd edition, taking place this year between 22nd and 30th June. Famous for its legendary evening screenings in Piazza Maggiore, the festival recently decided to add an extra day during only one cinema operates, showing the best of that year.
Here are some programmes and retrospectives to expect during the festival:

SOUL AND CRAFT: A PORTRAIT OF HENRY KING. One of Hollywood’s most enduring filmmakers, he made 116 films across all genres between 1915 and 1962. Nostalgic and religious, his films are blessed with vitality in each and every shot. They feature some of cinema’s greatest stars, often in their best performances. This retrospective focuses on King’s sound period, but the programme also includes one classic and one rarity from his silent years. Curated by Ehsan Khoshbakht

RENDEZ-NOUS MUSIDORA! A haunting enigma made flesh, night incarnate in her black silk catsuit, the elusive and wild character of Irma Vep, the leader of a gang of criminals in Feuillades’ Les Vampires (1915) made the actress Musidora immortal. But what about the woman behind the cult image? Musidora was an accomplished designer and painter, an essayist, novelist, and poet, a film archivist, a theatre actor, singer and variety artist. Between 1921 and 1923, as an independent filmmaker, Musidora wrote, produced, acted in and shot a highly personal film trilogy in Spain. The long-awaited reconstruction of her Pour Don Carlos presents an occasion to celebrate the artist and her many lives, which were as adventurous as, if not more than, the exploits of Irma Vep. Curated by Émilie Cauquy and Mariann Lewinsky

“WE ARE THE NATIVES OF TRIZONIA”: INVENTING WEST GERMAN CINEMA, 1945-49: Following the capitulation on 8th May 1945, Germany became an occupied territory devoid of proper nationhood. From 1945 to 1948 the US-American, British and French occupied zones slowly fused into an administrative unity called the Trizone, which became the basis for the Federal Republic of Germany. We Are the Natives of Trizonia (named after a Cologne carnival song from the same period) will look at this fragile construct’s film production, called “the avant-garde days of post-war German cinema” with movies such as Der große Mandarin (Karl Heinz Stroux, 1949), Herrliche Zeiten (Günter Neumann and Erik Ode, 1949-50), Lang ist der Weg (Marek Goldstein and Herbert Bruno Fredersdorf, 1948), Asylrecht (Rudolf Werner Kipp, 1949). This is going to be a programme of discoveries and surprises. Curated by Olaf Möller.

UNDER THE SKIES OF SEOUL: THE GOLDEN AGE OF SOUTH KOREAN CINEMA. Il Cinema Ritrovato’s first survey of South Korean film is a rare opportunity to discover key works from the renaissance of one of the most influential East Asian cinemas. The programme will present great films by celebrated directors such as Shin Sang-ok, Lee Man-hee and Kim Soo-yong, many of which will be screened from new or recent restorations. Curated by Hyun Jin Cho and Minhwa Jung, in collaboration with Korean Film Archive

BRUTAL, NASTY, AND SHORT: THE NOIR OF FELIX E. FEIST. Even though he was born into the movie business, Felix E. Feist was always an outlier. But in 1947, he suddenly found his niche in the wave of noir that swept over Hollywood. These brisk, low-budget crime thrillers provided him with the template to create a crop of films spiked with verve and violence. He was particularly adept at presenting desperate characters in confined spaces, as seen in The Devil Thumbs a Ride (1947) and The Threat (1949), the former to be premiered in a new restoration. Il Cinema Ritrovato will screen four dark, fresh and deeply felt noir masterpieces by Feist. Curated by Eddie Muller

CINEMALIBERO – A 50TH ANNIVERSARY TRIBUTE TO FESPACO: An ongoing strand of the festival, Cinemalibero has been screening films and showcasing new restorations that are not otherwise easily detected on the radar of cinephilia. This year it will celebrate the 50th anniversary of FESPACO, the Panafrican Film and Television Festival of Ouagadougou in Burkina Faso, dubbed as the ‘capital of African cinema’. Curated by Cecilia Cenciarelli
Other retrospectives will regard Jean Gabin, Eduardo De Filippo, Youssef Chahine, Georges Franju and some rediscoveries from the Fox Film Corporation, following last year’s selection curated by Dave Kehr.
Il Cinema Ritrovato’s classic strands include:

Recovered and Restored – The best of the new restorations and discoveries from around the world.
In Search of Colour – Favourite and often obsolete colour formats will be explored in vintage prints and new restorations.
One Hundred Years Ago: 1919 – Riding back in our time machine to showcase some of the best and most surprising films made a century ago.
1899: Year Four of Cinema – There is more to early cinema than Méliès and the far-flung cameramen of the Frères Lumière. Discover sound film tests, home movies by affluent families and spectacular 68mm Mutoscope & Biograph films from the last year of the 19th century.
The Keaton Project – The comedy genius returns in new restorations, with live music.
Documents and Documentaries – Films on cinema and classic documentaries back on the big screen.
Il Cinema Ritrovato Kids – Films and workshops for our youngest and most curious audience.
Film Lectures – Legendary filmmakers, film restoration experts and prominent historians sharing their stories with the audience.
Il Cinema Ritrovato DVD Awards – An international jury picking the best releases of the year.
Book Fair – The most tempting collection of film books, DVDs and posters offered inside the Renzo Renzi Library.
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