I’ve had the pleasure of reading the Toronto Screen Shots blog for a number of years and always enjoy the unique insights and trivia shared by writer James McNally. Today his column highlights a new program hosted by the TIFF Bell Lightbox later this month and as I’m a huge Robert Altman fan, I wanted to share this with my readers. Hope you enjoy James’ editorial and please check out other stories at http://www.TorontoScreenShots.com
TIFF is bringing a wide-ranging retrospective of his work to the TIFF Bell Lightbox from August 7th-31st, and I’m excited to see some old favourites again, and to fill in a few gaps, too. Even better, kicking things off on Friday August 1st at 7pm is Altman, Toronto filmmaker Ron Mann’s new documentary on Altman’s life and work. Here are just a few highlights.
It wasn’t his first feature, but M*A*S*H definitely announced Altman’s arrival and heralded a new type of filmmaking that would come to be known as the “New Hollywood.” The tragicomic lives of a group of battlefield surgeons during the Korean War came out while the war in Vietnam was in full swing, and its satire still stings today. M*A*S*H screens on Thursday August 7 at 6:30pm.
McCabe and Mrs. Miller (1971)
Described as a “revisionist Western,” McCabe and Mrs. Miller has been on my “blind spot” list for years. I’m so glad I finally got to see it on the big screen. I’ll be posting my thoughts on the film here very soon.McCabe and Mrs. Miller will screen with an introduction from its cinematographer Vilmos Zsigmond onFriday August 8 at 6:15pm.
Brewster McCloud (1970)
This story of an eccentric young man (Bud Cort) who lives in the Houston Astrodome and who wants to fly like a bird has been difficult to see over the years. I’m looking forward to catching it on 35mm.Brewster McCloud will screen on Sunday August 10 at 1:30pm.
California Split (1974)
One of the only Altman films I’ve actually written about before, this features two stalwarts of ‘70s cinema, Elliott Gould and George Segal as a couple of gambling buddies. It’s funny, but also darker than it first appears. Addiction’s pull is just below the surface of all the other antics. California Split screens onThursday August 21 at 6:15pm.
There is much, much more, including screenings of The Long Goodbye (1973), Nashville (1975), The Player(1991), Short Cuts (1993), Gosford Park (2001), and his last film, A Prairie Home Companion (2006). More information on the series from the TIFF web site.
Tickets for all screenings are available through the TIFF web site or at the box office. I’ve got mine already. See you there!