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DEATH RACE 2000
1975, New World Pictures, 80 min, USA, Dir: Paul Bartel

In the year 2000, hit-and-run driving is no longer a felony - it's the national sport! In a dystopian future, economic collapse has pushed America into martial law; to keep the people pacified, the government has created the Transcontinental Road Race. Pro-wrestling-style drivers (David Carradine, Mary Woronov and a pre-ROCKY Sylvester Stallone among them) resort to any violence necessary to cross the finish line first, racking up bonus points for killing pedestrians. But resistance fighters hope to use the race to their own ends in Paul Bartel’s satirical cult favorite.


I'LL BE AROUND
2020, Blvd. Du Cinema, 123 min, USA, Dir: Michael Cuenca

The third feature by co-writer/director Michael Cuenca takes place over the course of one day, before and during an intimate post-punk music festival. The story focuses on no particular protagonist but an influx of interconnected characters (musicians, wanderers, fanatics) from all walks of life having discussions about music, romance and facing artistic and existential dilemmas. The film features a cast of over 50 eccentric characters, with special appearances by J Mascis (Dinosaur Jr), Jonah Ray, (“Mystery Science Theater 3000”), Frank Agnew (The Adolescents), Casey Royer (D.I.), and Pleasant Gehman (punk icon).


MR. TOPAZE
1961, Film Movement, 97 min, UK, Dir: Peter Sellers

Unwilling to sacrifice his principles, Auguste Topaze (Peter Sellers), a poor but proud French schoolmaster, loses his job after he refuses to alter the failing grades of one of students. Seizing the opportunity to exploit his well-known honesty, actress Suzy Courtois (Nadia Gray) convinces her lover, the corrupt city council member Castel Benac (Herbert Lom), to hire Topaze as a managing director for one of his shady businesses. But when Topaze learns he is being used, he cunningly turns the tables on his deceivers and makes off with all of the money. Seller’s first and only credited directorial feature, MR. TOPAZE displays the British comic genius at the peak of his powers alongside his future PINK PANTHER nemesis Herbert Lom and a stellar supporting cast that includes Leo McKern, Billie Whitelaw and Michael Gough. Believed to be “lost” for years, MR. TOPAZE was digitally restored from the lone surviving 35mm print in the BFI archives at the request of the British public.


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