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NYFF29: Gus Van Sant’s “My Own Private Idaho”

As September draws nearer, the chances are dwindling to relive New York Film Festivals of years gone by. This week is a great time to celebrate 50 Years of NYFF, as we present a masterpiece by the great Gus Van Sant. Help us clebrate the 29th NYFF in 1991 and see Van Sant direct Keanu Reeves and the late River Phoenix in My Own Private Idaho, tonight (Tuesday) at 6:15pm.

Van Sant made his 3rd appearance at the NYFF with My Own Private Idaho, but it would not be his last. The Academy Award-winning director of Good Will Hunting and Milk is a regular at film festivals around the world. Looking at an early film like My Own Private Idaho, it is easy to see why. The film, like many of Van Sant's works, was a project that took more than a decade to fully realize. The screenplay is a combination of a long-simmering idea that Van Sant finally finished and put together with elements of Shakespeare's Henry IV and Henry V. The film cast River Phoenix as a narcoleptic street hustler in search of his mother with the help of a friend and fickle lover played by Keanu Reeves. Phoenix earned myriad praise for his role in the film and took home a handful of festival prizes, as well. It is among the best performances of both actors' careers, and an excellenct selection to represent NYFF '91.

Why not make a night of it? For just $25, you can grab Dinner and a Movie, which includes delicious fare from Indie Food and Wine! And stay tuned, because we'll be announcing new additions to the 50 Years of the New York Film Festival lineup imminently.

Below is a list of the films that played alongside My Own Private Idaho at NYFF '91:
The Double Life of Véronique (Le double vie de Véronique)
Krzysztof Kieslowski, France/Poland, 1991
Shown with Home Stories, Matthias Müller, Germany

Adam’s Rib (Rebro Adama)
Vyacheslav Krishtofovich, U.S.S.R., 1990
Shown with The Tennis Ball, John Dobson, Australia

Rocco and his Brothers (Rocco e i suoi fratelli)
Luchino Visconti, France/Italy, 1960 (NYFF Retrospective)

Amelia Lopes O’Neill
Valéria Sarmiento, Chile/France/Spain, 1990
Shown with Caira As Told By Youssef Chahine, Chahine, Egypt/France

Toto the Hero (Toto le héros)
Jaco van Dormael, Belgium/France/Germany, 1991
Shown with Puppenhead, David Cox, Australia

No Life King
Jun Ishikawa, Japan, 1989
Shown with Shirt, Kenji Larsen, USA

The Suspended Step of the Stork (Le pas suspendu de la cigogne)
Théo Angelopoulos, Greece/France, 1991

Inventory (Stan Posiadania)
Krzysztof Zanussi, Poland/Germany, 1989
Shown with With Raised Hands, Mitko Panov, Poland

The Other Eye (Der Andere Blick)
Johanna Heer and Werner Schmiedel, Austria/USA, 1991
Shown with Shönberg, Gerhard Erti, Sabine Hiebler, Austria

Jacuot de Nantis
Agnès Varda, France, 1991

The Adjuster
Adam Egoyan, Canada, 1991
Shown with The Visible Compendium, Larry Jordan, USA

Woman of the Port (La mujer del puerto)
Arthuro Ripstein, Mexico/USA, 1991
Shown with After the Fall, Joanna Priestly, USA

My Own Private Idaho
Gus Van Sant, Jr., USA, 1991
Shown with Backyard Movie, Bruce Weber, USA

A Room In Town (Une chambre en ville)
Jacques Demy, France, 1982 (NYFF Retrospective) 
Shown with La Plage, François Goize, France

Prospero’s Books
Peter Greenaway, Netherlands/Great Britain, 1991

Locked Up Time (Verriegelte Zeit)
Sibylle Schönemann, Germany, 1990
Shown with Great Regular Flavor, Rudy Burckhardt, USA

Beauty and the Beast
Gary Trousdale and Kirk Wise, USA, 1991

Life On a String (Bian Zou Bian Chang)
Chen Kaige, China/Great Britain/Germany, 1991
Shown with A Year Along the Abandoned Road, Morten Skallerud, Norway

The Rapture
Michael Tolkin, USA, 1990
Shown with Resonance, Stephen Cummins, Simon Hunt, Australia

Avant-Garde Visions:
Opening the Nineteenth Century: 1896, Ken Jacobs, USA; 
The Making of “Monsters,” John Greyson, Canada; 
Flaming Creatures,  Jack Smith, USA 

La Belle Noiseuse
Jacques Rivette, France, 1990

The Body Beautiful
Ngozi Onwurah, Great Britain, 1991
Shown with Intimate Stranger, Alan Berliner

Zombie and the Ghost Train (Zombie Ja Kummitusjuna)
Mika Kaurismaki, Finland, 1991
Shown with Tender, Slender, and Tall, Lesley Ellen, USA

Night on Earth,
Jim Jarmusch, USA, 1991

Earth Entranced (Terra Em Transe)
Glauber Rocha, Brazil, 1966
Shown with Suburban Route, Brazil

Pictures From a Revolution
Susan Meisala, Richard P. Rogers and Alfred Guzzetti, USA, 1991
Shown with Post No Bills, Clay Walker, USA

Delicatessen
Jean Pierre Jeunet and Marc Caro, France, 1991
Shown with New Fangled, George Griffin, USA

Homicide
David Mamet, USA, 1991
Shown with Fast Food Matador, Vincent Carafelli, Candy Kugel, USA

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