Thursday, December 19, 2013

Henry And June (1990)

WHO: This film was based on a memoir by Anaïs Nin; she is portrayed in the film by Maria de Medeiros (at left in above image).

WHAT: I have not seen this film; Here is a blog by someone who found it quite profound upon release, and revisited it twenty years later. It's best-known as the first, and behind Showgirls, still the highest-grossing, of all films ever rated NC-17 by the MPAA. In fact it was first rated X, but a legal action in the wake of that decision helped spark the creation of the 23-year-old "adults only" movie rating.

WHERE/WHEN: 7:30 tonight only at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts.

WHY: This is the second-to-last YBCA screening of 2013, with In A Year of 13 Moons this Saturday providing the climax to an excellent year of screenings and a 35mm-heavy autumn dominated by Fassbinder, Tarkovsky, and a spotlight on the X-Rating.

2014 will also kick off with films dialoguing with the history of censorship in American film: the complete works of Jack Smith, whose Flaming Creatures was deemed "obscene" and banned in New York after its 1963 cinema debut there. This January series, which also includes two documentaries on Smith (who may have known Anaïs Nin in fact; he certainly was connected to her through mutual associates like Jonas Mekas and Kenneth Anger), is a co-presentation of SF Cinematheque, which will also be presenting films by Janis Crystal Lipzin, Luther Price and others at YBCA February 1st, 2014 as part of a tribute to the stalwart Millennium Film Journal.  Further SF Cinematheque/YBCA events have yet to be announced, but the venue has revealed more of its February slate, including the ASKEW Film and Performance Festival, the annual Arrow Awards, and the documentary Design is One: Lella & Massimo Vignelli, which will on February 27th will launch a month of twelve design & architecture films; the other eleven titles yet to be revealed.

HOW: Henry And June screens in 35mm.

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