Set in Fenyang, Shanxi Province, the film focuses on a group of amateur theatre troupe performers whose fate mirrors that of the general population in China as massive socio-economic changes sweep across the mainland. The film commences in 1979 with the troupe performing numbers idolizing Mao Zedong, ending in the ’80s when the shows reflect the strong Western influences pervading China, covering a decade in which China saw tremendous changes.
The Robin Hood of El Dorado (1936) William A. Wellman, Warner Baxter, Ann Loring, Bruce Cabot, Biography, Drama, History
In the 1840’s Mexico has ceded California to the United States, making life nearly impossible for the Mexican population due to the influx of land and gold-crazy Americans. Farmer Joaquin Murrieta revenges the death of his wife against the four Americans who killed her and is branded an outlaw. The reward for his capture is increased as he subsequently kills the men who brutally murder his brother. Joining with bandit Three Fingered Jack, Murrieta raises an army of disaffected Mexicans and goes on a rampage against the Americans, finally forcing his erstwhile friend, Bill Warren, to lead a posse against him.
The Dictator (1935) Victor Saville, Clive Brook, Madeleine Carroll, Emlyn Williams, History, Romance
The story opens in Copenhagen in the year 1776 on the wedding night of the King and Princess Caroline Mathilde. But the marriage was a political alliance, and the Princess felt only repugnance for her dissolute husband. On the night of their marriage the King leaves Copenhagen on a pleasure trip abroad, but his fast life proves too much for his weak constitution. Summoned to attend him, an ambitious young doctor realises that here is a great opportunity. He revives the King and, tremendously impressed, the King takes him back to Copenhagen. A love affair develops between the doctor and the Princess – but it is to have terrible consequences.
Fuunji Oda Nobunaga / The Lucky Adventurer Oda Nobunaga (1959) Toshikazu Kôno, Katsuo Nakamura, Kinnosuke Nakamura, Eitarô Shindô, Drama, History
Oda Nobunaga (1534–1582) was a major daimyo during the Warring State period of Japanese history. He was the second son of Oda Nobuhide, a deputy military governor with land holdings in Owari province. Nobunaga lived a life of continuous military conquest, eventually conquering a third of Japanese daimyo before his death in 1582. Telling the story of his rise to prominence as he leads an army of 4,000 men against the 40,000 troops of Lord Imagawa Yoshimoto to prevent the arrogant daimyo from crushing the Oda clan and taking control of the entire nation. From a newly restored anamorpic widescreen print, this is the ultimate warlord movie.
JFK (1991) [Director’s Cut] Oliver Stone, Kevin Costner, Gary Oldman, Jack Lemmon, Drama, History, Thriller
On November 22, 1963, president John F. Kennedy is assassinated in Dallas. Lee Harvey Oswald is arrested for the crime and subsequently shot by Jack Ruby, supposedly avenging the president’s death. An investigation concludes that Lee Harvey Oswald and Jack Ruby acted alone in their respective crimes, but Louisiana district attorney Jim Garrison is skeptical. Assembling a trusted group of people, Garrison conducts his own investigation, bringing about backlash from powerful government and political figures.
Beaumarchais l’insolent / Beaumarchais the Scoundrel (1996) Édouard Molinaro, Fabrice Luchini, Sandrine Kiberlain, Manuel Blanc, Michel Aumont, Adventure, History, Romance
King of the Hill (1993) Steven Soderbergh, Jesse Bradford, Jeroen Krabbé, Lisa Eichhorn, Drama, History
The Woman Disputed (1928) Henry King, Sam Taylor, Norma Talmadge, Gilbert Roland, Arnold Kent, Drama, History
In 1914 a girl of the streets is befriended by two dashing young officers, an Austrian and a Russian. Both fall in love with her, but she picks the Austrian. When the war begins, Her town is overrun by Russians, lead by the once charming, now vengeful officer, who takes her prisoner and threatens death if she won’t marry him.
In 1940, at the beginning of World War II, Soviet soldiers conduct a mass execution of captured Polish officers. With Hitler’s forces rapidly advancing into Eastern Europe, a surviving Polish officer, Lt. Jerzy (Andrzej Chyra), at great risk to his own life, chooses to stay behind with his wife, Anna (Maja Ostaszewska). As the Germans round up Lt. Jerzy and other officers, propaganda efforts cover up the truth about the Soviet soldiers’ shocking brutality.
Viola di mare / The Sea Purple (2009) Donatella Maiorca, Valeria Solarino, Isabella Ragonese, Ennio Fantastichini, Giselda Volodi, Drama, History, Romance
Nothing – not her father, not the church – can stop unruly Angela from being with her childhood best friend turned great love, Sara. Based on a true story, Viola di mare, presents a uniquely engaging portrait of family, community and gender roles in a 19th century Italian village.