1962, Janus/ Criterion, 94 min, Dir: Roman Polanski

Director Roman Polanski’s debut feature, co-written by Jerzy Skolimowski (DEEP END), is one of the most claustrophobic, tension-building psychodramas of the 1960s, whittled to three characters - a husband and wife (Leon Niemczyk, Jolanta Umecka) and the hitchhiker (Zygmunt Malanowicz) they pick up on their way to a remote lake to go sailing. Once aboard the yacht, sexual tension rears its ugly head and grows gradually from aggressive rough-housing to outright violence. Not released until late 1963 in the U.S., the film was nominated for a 1964 Best Foreign-Language Film Oscar. "…a slow-burning exploration of jealousy, spite and middle-age…creeping tensions and Oedipal undertow…a film whose scenes and themes stick with you." - Andy Jacobs, BBC. In Polish with English subtitles.

1963, 20th Century Fox, 185 min, Dir: Luchino Visconti

Adapting Giuseppe di Lampedusa’s literary masterwork, director Luchino Visconti focuses on philosophical, melancholic Prince Salina (Burt Lancaster), a Sicilian nobleman well aware of the inevitability of the violent Garibaldi-led upheavals then occurring in his country. He is determined to see his family survive, in whatever form, and he watches approvingly as his nephew Tancredi (Alain Delon) becomes engaged to the smolderingly beautiful and sweet-natured Angelica (Claudia Cardinale), the daughter of a wealthy, wily merchant. With a sublime score by the incomparable Nino Rota. If you have never seen it on the big screen, now is your chance! "…One of Visconti's achievements is to make that rare thing, a great film of a great book…The cinema at its best can give us the illusion of living another life, and that's what happens here…miraculous and emotionally devastating…" - Roger Ebert, The Chicago Sun-Times. In Italian with English subtitles.

1989, Severin Films, 121 min, Italy/Mexico, Dir: Alejandro Jodorowsky

Combining elements at once beautiful, grotesque and erotic, SANTA SANGRE is something akin to Fellini remaking both PSYCHO and NIGHTMARE ALLEY as one single, glorious fever dream of a thriller. If you haven’t seen it, do not miss out!

Syndicate content