One-Night Stands 

Repertory film listings for November 27-December 3, 2008.

Fri., November 28

Autumn Leaves Joan Crawford, getting on in years, weds a younger guy — then learns he's already married and has a few loose screws. Well, you can't have everything. Robert Aldrich directs. With Lorna Greene, Vera Miles, and Cliff Robertson as the husband (108 min., 1956). (PFA, 6:30)

Her Brother A cruel woman (Kinuyo Tanaka) forces her stepdaughter to care for the woman's spoiled brother in this soap opera by director Kon Ichikawa. It costars Keiko Kishi and Hiroshi Kawaguchi. Screenplay by Yoko Mizuki (98 min., 1960). (PFA, 8:40)

Sat., November 29

Our Hospitality Buster Keaton unwittingly stumbles into an Appalachian feud when he courts a girl from the "other" family. "Our hospitality" means her brothers won't kill him as long as he's their guest, so he can't leave, of course. A wonderful old train, a spectacular rescue at a waterfall, and poor marvelous Buster, always the bemused outsider learning to survive the local conditions like the model of all-American resourcefulness he was (70 min., 1921). Preceded by Buster Keaton's The Haunted House (20 min., 1921). — N.W. (PFA, 3:00)

Zigeunerweisen In the Japan of the 1920s, a professor is drawn into a sexual pentangle full of Surrealist elements at a seaside resort, courtesy director Seijun Suzuki. Yoshio Harada and Naoko Otani star (145 min., 1980). (PFA, 5:00)

Open City If all the priests in the Bronx parish where I grew up had been like Don Pietro (modeled on Father Don Morosini, executed by the Nazis in 1944), I might still be attending church on Sundays. The script was conceived by Roberto Rossellini in the last days of the Nazi occupation of Rome, and shot two months after Liberation Day on odds and ends of film stock. This homage to the martyrs of the Italian resistance movement is electric in its immediacy, and its release heralded the neorealist cinema of postwar Italy. Directed by Rossellini, adapted by Rossellini, Sergio Amidei, and Federico Fellini from a story by Amidei and Alberto Consiglio. With Anna Magnani (105 min., 1945). — M.C. (PFA, 8:00)

Sun., November 30

Tora-san's Sunrise and Sunset Episode seventeen in Japanese filmmaker Yoji Yamada's 48-film Tora-san story, Sunrise and Sunset finds our warm-hearted yet bumbling hero heading to his aunt and uncle's house in the Tokyo suburbs, leaving a trail of havoc in his wake (109 min., 1976). (PFA, 3:00)

Umberto D. Director Vittorio De Sica and writer Cesare Zavattini collaborated five times, and along with the classic Bicycle Thieves, this is their most satisfying and moving effort. A touching story of an aging ex-civil servant (Carlo Battisti) feeling the pinch of postwar economic distress more than most, whose his only friend is his little dog (for whom he sacrifices a portion of his meager pension), the film is at once a tragedy of a generation cut off from the world it made and a study of a man too proud to relinquish his tenuous grip on life. A fine example of the power of neorealism. Recommended (89 min., 1952). — D.D. (PFA, 5:15)

Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory In one of his sharpest performances, Gene Wilder casts a melancholy, slightly sinister spell over Roald Dahl's satiric children's story about a poor boy who meets an eccentric candy manufacturer. Highlights include the "Oompa-Loompa" song by Anthony Newley and Leslie Bricusse and naughty kids being dispatched by drowning in chocolate. Won't rot the teeth of adults, either. Directed by Mel Stuart from Dahl's screenplay. With Jack Albertson and Peter Ostrum (98 min., 1971). — K.V. (EC, 2:00)

Tue., December 2

Martha Colburn's Collage Animations A collection of ten short films by collage filmmaker Martha Colburn dating from 1995 to 2008 (total running time 55 min.). Colburn in person. (PFA, 7:30)

Wed., December 3

The Ceremony If you were understandably bored by In the Realm of the Senses, this 1971 film by Nagisa Oshima offers much more convincing proof of his talent. A deadly parody of one of Japan's most beloved genres, the family saga, The Ceremony uses the story of the Sakurada clan as a mirror for the cultural decay of Japan in the wake of World War II. Influenced by Godard, Oshima employs a collapsing montage technique that transforms melodramatic cliché into metaphysical horror (123 min.). — D.K. (PFA, 7:00)


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