International Film Series

Spring 2015

January 17, 2015

BOYHOOD, dir. Linklater, 2014, USA

Wednesday, February 4, 6:30pm, CLO 110

“Filmed over 12 consecutive years, ‘Boyhood’ centers on Mason (Ellar Coltrane), who’s 6 when the story opens and 18 when it ends… The realism is jolting, and so brilliantly realized and understated that it would be easy to overlook. In ‘Boyhood,’ Mr. Linklater’s inspired idea of showing the very thing that most movies either ignore or awkwardly elide — the passage of time — is its impressive, headline-making conceit… What emerged from those dozen years is a series of meticulously textured and structured scenes set to the rhythm of life.”
–Manohla Dargis, The New York Times


read more ... Spring 2015

Club Cinema, presented by the French Club at PUC

October 30, 2014

MODERN LIFE (La Vie Moderne)

Raymond Depardon, France, 2008

Tuesday, December 2, 6:30pm, CLO110

“This poised and poignant latest from filmmaker Raymond Depardon is the (possible) final chapter in a trio of documentaries about the demise of tradition in the French countryside. Not the sexiest of topics, for sure, but one which draws fascinating and subtle insight from individuals whose cherished way of life is slipping away…The director traverses the twisted hillside passes of the Cévennes region of southern France, reconvenes with various farmworkers he’s ‘earned the trust of’ over the years and casually chats to them about their lives..He simply and sensitively asks questions…Depardon’s palpable sense of respect for his subjects lends the film a geniality that would otherwise have been hard to fabricate.”

–David Jenkins, Time Out London



Nicolas Philibert, France, 2003

Tuesday, November 18, 6:30pm, CLO110

“Director Nicolas Philibert lets his camera become a silent student in the classroom…the film is entirely made up of impromptu moments with the students. The children — about a dozen of them, ranging from preschoolers to preteens — occasionally seem distracted, smiling toothily at the camera. But for the most part, they’re natural and charming, intent on their teacher’s face, puzzling through the process of learning…  Each scene is about more than it seems on the surface; you wonder what these children will remember from those days — not the camera, but the moment when the multiplication table made sense, or the day Monsieur Lopez taught them to flip a perfect crepe.”

–Moira Macdonald, Seattle Times



Agnes Varda, France, 2001

Tuesday, November 11, 7:00pm, CLO110

“The ‘gleaners’ in the title are all manner of folk who gather up castoffs, oddments, and curios from dumps and harvests, and Varda explicitly links them to the gatherers in paintings by Millet and Jules Breton… Varda is open to the surprise of the dailiness that surrounds her; every story, every whim takes her down another byway…For her, life is an accumulation of possibilities. ‘A clock without hands is my kind of thing,’ she tells us…and indeed it is. There’s a timelessness, an immanence to what she shows us… Using a digital video camera, Varda films her present-day gleaners in urban and rural France as they forage and lollygag…her ostensible subject is an excuse for a larger one: how improvisation and art are inextricably linked.”

– Peter Rainer, New York Magazine 



Laurent Cantet, France, 2008

Tuesday, November 4, 6:30pm, CLO110

“Laurent Cantet’s film won the Gold Palm at Cannes, and the French best picture Lumiere Award…The Class, an Oscar-nominated French film about a Paris middle school, should be required viewing for anybody considering a career in teaching. The problems seen here — class time wasted on discipline; parents in denial; frustrated teachers — seem endemic and universal. Any hope of ‘inspiring’ those one or two children a year who let you see the light flash on contrasts with the sobering reality of how frustrating the work can be…The genius of the film is its focus on the classroom and the teacher’s lounge.”

–Roger Moore, Orlando Sentinel


read more ... Club Cinema, presented by the French Club at PUC

Club Cinema, presented by PUC’s Spanish Club

September 25, 2014


Marcel Rasquin, Venezuela, 2010

Thursday, October 30, 6:30pm, CLO110

 “The heartfelt first feature from the Venezuelan filmmaker Marcel Rasquin, follows two soccer-playing boys whose striking talents offer escape from the slums of Caracas… this confident movie, alternately volatile and tender, coats its clichés in winningly natural performances and Enrique Aular’s kinetic photography. Game sequences hurtle forward in breathless bursts of motion, and scenes between the boys and their loving single mother…are handled with warm authenticity.”

–Jeanette Catsoulis, New York Times



Benito Zambrano, Spain, 2005

Thursday, October 23, 6:30pm, CLO110

“Understanding that the energy and passion of Cuba is shown best through its music, [Benito Zambrano] has created a format to show the new Cuban music scene – an energetic mix of samba, salsa and blues…Through the personal story of struggling musicians Ruy and Tito, the difficult issues of emigration, family, separating and the different responsibilites of men and women are explored. Zambrano has painted a fresh picture of the real Cuba, one that is often easily stereotyped. A touching story with almost two hours of great music – Cuba libre!! 

–Patricia Ritz,



Gary Alazraki, Mexico, 2013

Thursday, October 16, 6:30pm, CLO110

 “Class-clash comedy, Nosotros los Nobles [We Are The Nobles], riffs on the cunning scheme of a Mexico  City millionaire who strips his kids of all their luxuries by staging a fake police raid, forcing them to drive buses, wait cantina tables and other humiliations conducive to heartwarming life lessons… directly inspired by Luis Buñuel’s 1949 comedy El Gran Calavera (The Great Madcap), which also features a modern-day Croesus reassessing his life.”

– Phil Hoad, The Guardian



Juan Jose Campanella, Argentina, 2009

Wednesday, October 8, 6:30pm, CLO110

“Juan José Campanella’s mesmerizing thriller…”The Secret in Their Eyes”,  which won the Academy Award for best foreign-language film earlier (2010)… keeps us wondering, switching back and forth from flashbacks to present, filtering its story through a character’s eyes. The crime haunting Esposito is a brutal 1974 rape and murder…Everyone’s eyes have secrets in this story; you’ll watch them closely, barely daring to blink… the filmmaking is so skilled.”

–Moira Macdonad, Seattle Times



Alberto Rodriguez, Spain, 2012

Thursday, October 2, 6:30pm. CLO110

“Finally. An action film that’s more about the characters than the chase … even though the chase is damn good. Lensed by cinematographer Alex Catalán (who received the Tribeca Special Jury Mention for his work), there’s not one shake in this smooth action-cam as it thrillingly follows the ethically challenged police force of Unit 7… An insightful tale about a character’s dance to the dark side is timeless. Beautifully shot, well-acted, with a fascinating story that blends action and character together in a deft duet.”

–Kimberly Gadette,


read more ... Club Cinema, presented by PUC's Spanish Club

Four From ’14

August 24, 2014


Rithy Panh, Cambodia, 2014

Wednesday, September 24, 6:30pm, CLO110

“Part memoir and part documentary, the Oscar-nominated “The Missing Picture” engages with the past, not by confronting it, but by backing away. In doing so, it presents a view of history that is as devastatingly personal as it is profound. In 1975, when the Cambodian-born, French-educated filmmaker Rithy Panh was 13, he and his family were deported from their home in Phnom Penh to labor camps by the Communist Khmer Rouge, who had just taken over the country. “The Missing Picture” is based on his memories of the deprivation and death that followed. Combining archival footage with new scenes using crudely hand-carved, hand-painted clay figurines, Panh tells the story in a manner that feels simultaneously detached and uncomfortably intimate…It’s frankly amazing how much poignancy he is able to wring out of simple models.”

– Michael O’Sullivan, The Washington Post




Jonathan Glazer, UK, 2014

Thursday, September 18, 6:30pm, CLO110

“In Under the Skin, a deeply creepy and mysterious noir from filmmaker Jonathan Glazer, Scarlett Johansson is this quite literal femme fatale, robotic, hypnotic, trolling Scotland – cities, villages, the cold rocky shores – for prey. Who she is and where she’s from are questions that get answered, to a degree, as she moves through her nights and days… Under the Skin definitely gets under your skin. If you want spooky, allegory-free sci-fi, the film works that way – an alien among us, trying to come to terms with this odd new context, and with her increasingly empathic urges. (The more she lingers, and commingles, the less sure she is of her own being.).”
–Steven Rea, Philadelphia Inquirer



read more ... Four From '14