FSLC announces film series celebrating Hollywood’s “Jew Wave” of the late 60s/early 70s

Posted by on 10.27.2011

THE FILM SOCIETY OF LINCOLN CENTER

announces film series celebrating HOLLYWOOD’S “JEW WAVE” of the late 60s/early 70s

Appearances include Elliot Gould, Charles Grodin, Buck Henry, Walter Bernstein, Jeanie Berlin and James Toback

Special November 1st screening of EL TOPO

with Alajandro Jodorowsky in attendance also announced

November 1

Alejandro Jodorowsky’s El Topo

Alejandro Jodorowsky in Person!        

El Topo (1970) 125min

Director: Alejandro Jodorowsky

Country: Spain/Mexico

A fascinating collision of Sixties avant-garde theater, Latin American symbolism, European radical cinema and the furthest reaches of the movie western, Alejandro Jodorowsky’s EL TOPO chronicles the exploits of a master gunfighter and cosmic mystic (played by director Jodorowsky himself) as he sets out to do battle with four sinister, sharp-shooting rivals.

John Lennon himself declared the film a masterpiece, and the rest was history: Jodorowsky’s film became an international cult classic and was one of the key works to establish the concept of the “midnight movie.” Now lovingly restored, EL TOPO feels no less provocative than when first released, but today also evidences a kind of multicultural fusion that puts it far ahead of its time.

EL TOPO will screen at the Walter Reade Theater on Tuesday, November 1 at 6:00PM. The screening will be followed by a conversation with Alejandro Jodorowsky and Film Society of Lincoln Center Program Director Richard Peña.

November 3 - 13

Hollywood’s “Jew Wave”

For a not-so-brief moment in the late 1960s and early ’70s, a new wave of Jewish leading men and women (including Dustin Hoffman, Elliott Gould, George Segal, and Barbra Streisand) took Hollywood by storm, emerging among the most popular stars of the era and appearing in many films that, per the critic J. Hoberman, “featured a hitherto unspeakable degree of Jewish content.” A vital subset of the storied “new” Hollywood cinema of the post-EASY RIDER era, and of the broader Jewish-American cultural revival simultaneously occurring in literature (Philip Roth, Saul Bellow) and other segments of pop culture, Hollywood’s “Jew Wave” forever changed the landscape of mainstream American movies and blazed the trail for such Jewish stars of today as James Franco, Natalie Portman, Seth Rogen, and Adam Sandler. Series co-programmed by Scott Foundas and J. Hoberman.

Films, Descriptions and Schedule


THE ANGEL LEVINE (1970) 104min

Director: Ján Kadár

Country: USA

Elderly Jew Morris Mishkin (Zero Mostel) is understandably skeptical when a black guardian angel, Alexander Levine (Harry Belafonte), appears to him after a long run of bad luck. Adapted from the Bernard Malamud story by Bill Gunn (THE LANDLORD) at an unusual moment for studios, this first American film by Czech director Ján Kadár explores racial tensions and faith in an imperfect world, viewed from either side of the afterlife. In addition to Mostel and Belafonte, the touching cast includes Yiddish theater legend Ida Kaminska as Mishkin’s ailing wife.

THE ANGEL LEVINE will screen at the Walter Reade Theater on Saturday, November 12 at 9:00PM. 

ANNIE HALL (1977) 93min

Director: Woody Allen

Country: USA

One of the greatest neurotics ever put on screen came with Woody Allen’s perpetual outsider Alvy Singer, a New York comic whose uneasy relationship with his WASP girlfriend (Diane Keaton) are matched by a general uneasiness with life—and, as he might put it, belonging to a club that would have him as a member. Borrowing from Bergman and Fellini, this hilarious, fractured film reconstructs Alvy’s life story, with commentary and moviemaking invention, and the result is an Oscar-winning romantic comedy classic that pulls out all the stops, but also one that, opening and closing with philosophical jokes, amounts to an extended questing monologue on belonging and identity.

ANNIE HALL will screen at the Walter Reade Theater on Sunday, November 6 at 9:00PM and Tuesday, November 8 at 1:45PM.

THE APPRENTICESHIP OF DUDDY KRAVITZ (1974) 120min

Director: Ted Kotcheff

Country: Canada

The ambitious younger son (Richard Dreyfuss) in a working-class Montreal family in the 1950s claws his way to the top in this bracing, rarely screened adaptation of the Mordechai Richler novel. On the make from his teenaged years onward (starting a business of filming bar mitzvahs, ruthlessly chasing after land), Duddy becomes a portrait in all-consuming ambition, alienating friends, relatives, and the girl who loves him.

THE APPRENTICESHIP OF DUDDY KRAVITZ screens at the Walter Reade Theater on Friday, November 11 at 6:00PM and Sunday, November 13 at 1:00PM.

BYE BYE BRAVERMAN (1968) 94min

Director: Sidney Lumet

Country: USA

Four childhood friends make an epic trip to an old pal’s funeral in Brooklyn in Sidney Lumet’s bittersweet, rarely shown film. All intellectuals of various stripes, the gang (George Segal, Jack Warden, Sorrell Booke, Joseph Wiseman) make their reflective chatty journey to toast their friend, “a secondary talent of the highest order,” as the passing scenery gives a veritable catalogue of old Williamsburg. Lumet would call it “the most personal picture I’ve ever made.” BYE BYE BRAVERMAN will screen at the Walter Reade Theater on Thursday, November 3 at 6:30PM and Saturday, November 12 at 3:45PM. The November 3 screening will be introduced by Village Voice film critic and series co-programmer J. Hoberman.

CALIFORNIA SPLIT (1974) 108min

Director: Robert Altman

Country: USA

Streetwise Charlie (Elliott Gould) and married Bill (George Segal) are gambling fiends in Altman’s SoCal study in friendship, mania, and the rush of chance. Chasing the ever-receding goal of a streak, the pair hustle themselves into the ground, as Gould and Segal bring wired charisma and an extraordinary lived-in camaraderie to their roles. The card games, poker halls, and racetracks come alive with Altman’s dense soundscapes in a movie too often overshadowed by the director’s panoramic works in the same decade. CALIFORNIA SPLIT will screen at the Walter Reade Theater on Saturday, November 5 at 6:15PM and Tuesday, November 8 at 3:45PM. A Q&A with Elliott Gould and filmmakers Brian Koppelman and David Levien (ROUNDERS, OCEAN’S THIRTEEN) will follow the screening on November 5.

THE FRONT (1976) 95min

Director: Martin Ritt

Country: USA

Screenwriter Walter Bernstein and director Martin Ritt, along with stars Zero Mostel and Herschel Bernardi, drew on their collective experience as survivors of the Hollywood blacklist for this wry comedy about a small-time bookie (Woody Allen) who becomes a “front” for a group of blacklisted television writers. Bernstein’s Oscar-nominated script sustains a nimble balance between tragedy and farce as Allen’s hapless Howard Prince finds himself first acclaimed as a genius and, later, hauled before the House Un-American Activities Committee to testify. The result is a stingingly funny, poignant look back at a very dark chapter in America’s not too distant past. THE FRONT screens at the Walter Reade Theater Friday, November 4 at 1:15PM and Monday, November 7 at 6:00PM. A  Q&A with Walter Bernstein and J. Hoberman will follow the November 7 screening!

FUNNY GIRL (1968) 151min

Director: William Wyler

Country: USA,

The one and only Barbra Streisand (in her film debut) won a well-deserved Oscar for her portrayal of musical comedienne Fanny Brice in director William Wyler’s lavish bio-pic. From the slums of the Lower East Side, Fanny rises to become a star of the Ziegfeld Follies, while navigating a tumultuous romance to ne’er-do-well playboy and gambler Nicky Arnstein (Omar Sharif). The Bob Merrill-Jule Styne score sports multiple show-stopping numbers that would go on to become Babs standards, including “People” and the unforgettable “Don’t Rain on My Parade” (sung from the back of a New York Harbor tugboat!).

FUNNY GIRL will screen at the Walter Reade Theater on Wednesday, November 9 at 1:00PM and Sunday, November 13 at 8:30PM.

THE GAMBLER (1974) 111min

Director: Karel Reisz

Country: USA

Recently in the news due to a proposed Martin Scorsese-Leonardo DiCaprio remake, director Karel Reisz and screenwriter James Toback’s Dostoevskyan gambling drama has lost none of its original punch. Fresh from his star-making turn in THE GODFATHER, James Caan gives a dynamic performance as Axel Freed, a City College English professor whose reckless betting on basketball puts him in hock to his bookie (Paul Sorvino) and forces him to prey upon family, friends and even his own students as he attempts to climb his way out.

THE GAMBLER will screen at the Walter Reade Theater on Friday, November 4 at 3:30PM and Saturday, November 12 at 6:00PM. The screening on Saturday, November 12 will be followed by a Q&A with James Toback.

GOODBYE, COLUMBUS (1969) 102min

Director: Larry Peerce

Country: USA

Generally considered the more successful of the “Jew Wave”’s two high-profile Philip Roth adaptations (preceding 1972’s infamous PORTNOY’S COMPLAINT), director—and cantor’s son—Larry Peerce’s GOODBYE, COLUMBUS nevertheless raised its fair share of eyebrows with its depiction of the summer romance between working-class librarian Neil (Richard Benjamin) and Jewish American Princess Brenda (Ali McGraw). Cultures clash as the forthright Brenda pulls Neil deeper into her Westchester high society, capped by a legendary wedding scene that some critics felt crossed the line from affectionate ethnic humor into self-hating caricature.

GOODBYE, COLUMBUS will screen at the Walter Reade Theater on Friday, November 11 at 3:45PM and Saturday, November 12 at 1:30PM.

THE HEARTBREAK KID (1972) 106min

Director: Elaine May

Country: USA

This gut-wrenching tale, about an upwardly (or outwardly) mobile New York Jewish boy (Charles Grodin) who marries within the faith only to meet the shiksa of his dreams on his Miami honeymoon, is told in the coolest manner imaginable. Every perfectly observed and appointed interaction plays out so smoothly and quietly that the full impact of the story is that much more devastating when it hits you during the film’s final plaintive moments. Few movies are better cast. Grodin’s brilliant performance in the lead was career-defining, Eddie Albert’s slow burns belong in a museum, and it was with this movie that Cybill Shepherd became the iconic ’70s golden girl. But The Heartbreak Kid wouldn’t have been possible without May’s daughter, Jeannie Berlin, as the haplessly gauche, grating and pitiful Lila.

THE HEARTBREAK KID will screen at the Walter Reade Theater on Friday, November 4 at 6:00PM and Monday, November 7 at 3:45PM. The November 4 screening will be followed by a Q&A with Charles Grodin and Jeannie Berlin.

I LOVE YOU, ALICE B. TOKLAS! (1968) 92min

Director: Hy Averback

Country: USA

Written by Larry Tucker and Paul Mazursky with sly insight into the Swinging Sixties, this amiable, offbeat comedy stars Peter Sellers as Harold Fine, a phobic Los Angeles attorney caught between his desperate fiancée Joyce (Joyce Van Patten) and a pushy mother (the scene-stealing Jo Van Fleet). At a family funeral, Harry is introduced to a beguiling flower child (Leigh Taylor-Young) who lures him into a new-age lifestyle ruled by tie-dye, free love and psychedelics.

I LOVE YOU, ALICE B. TOKLAS! Will screen at the Walter Reade Theater on Sunday, November 6 at 4:00PM and Friday, November 11 at 1:45PM.

LENNY (1974) 111min

Director: Bob Fosse

Country: USA

Dustin Hoffman all but merges with the great controversial comedian Lenny Bruce in this vibrant docudrama. Stunningly shot in X-ray black and white by Bruce Surtees, Lenny shuttles back and forth through Bruce’s life onstage and off, from his daring stand-up act to his life with stripper Honey Harlowe (Valerie Perrine). Julian Barry’s script, loosely based on his play, tracks Lenny and Honey’s descent into drug addiction and a particular brand of punishing hedonism that was a Fosse specialty. Nominated for Oscars in six categories, including Best Picture, Best Director, Best Actor and Actress, and Best Cinematography.

LENNY will screen at the Walter Reade Theater on Wednesday, November 9 at 4:00PM and Friday, November 11 at 9:00PM.

MOVE (1970) 90min

Director: Stuart Rosenberg

Country: USA

Following the back-to-back smashes BOB AND CAROL AND TED AND ALICE and M*A*S*H, Elliott Gould made this rarely screened absurdist comedy, courtesy of none other than COOL HAND LUKE director Stuart Rosenberg. Gould stars as Hiram Jaffe, an aspiring playwright who makes a living as a porn writer and dog walker, and whose life devolves into Kafka-esque chaos when he and his wife (Paula Prentiss) attempt to make a two-block move to a slightly larger apartment on the Upper West Side. Surreal fantasy sequences abound in which Hiram’s psychosexual neuroses run wild. NOT ON DVD.

MOVE will screen at the Walter Reade Theater on Saturday, November 5 at 9:00PM.

THE OWL AND THE PUSSYCAT (1970) 95min

Director: Herbert Ross

Country: USA

In her first non-musical lead, Barbra Streisand brings brassy joie de vivre to the part of Doris, a quick-witted New York call girl who, through a series of screwball situations, finds herself sharing a small apartment with Felix (George Segal), a mousy Doubleday clerk who dreams of a writing career. At first, feathers are ruffled and fur flies, but before long these polar opposites find themselves falling for one another. Crisply directed by Herbert Ross from a witty screenplay by Oscar-nominee Buck Henry (THE GRADUATE).

THE OWL AND THE PUSSYCAT will screen at the Walter Reade Theater on Sunday, November 13 at 6:00PM including a Q&A with screenwriter Buck Henry.

THE PLOT AGAINST HARRY (1989) 81min

Director: Michael Roemer

Country: USA

Rare 16mm print!

Rejected by confused Columbia Pictures execs in 1970, Michael Roemer’s THE PLOT AGAINST HARRY spent two decades lying in wait before being resurrected to great acclaim—and becoming a selection of the 1989 New York Film Festival. Small-time Jewish racketeer Harry Plotnick (Martin Priest) is freshly released from prison to find his barely legitimate business struggling to keep afloat. Roemer’s film features a priceless cast, deadpan sense of humor, and a wonderful sad-sack turn by Priest, while capturing a lost world of the Bronx in the mid-Sixties: call girls, maudlin suburbanites, Mafioso street toughs, bar mitzvahs, and all.

THE PLOT AGAINST HARRY will screen at the Walter Reade Theater on Friday, November 4 at 8:45PM and Sunday, November 6 at 2:00PM.

THE PRODUCERS (1968) 88min

Director: Mel Brooks

Country: USA

Before it was a Tony-winning Broadway smash, Mel Brooks’s mind-boggling, side-splitting, transcendently tasteless comedy was his classic debut feature as writer and director. Gene Wilder and Zero Mostel originated the roles of down-at-the-heels stage producers Leo Bloom and Max Bialystock, who dream up the idea of putting on a over-financed musical that's built to fail in order to scam the investors. The result: Springtime for Hitler, an effervescent romp about Adolf Hitler and Eva Braun, written by a neo-Nazi (Kenneth Mars), directed by a fatuous cross-dresser (Christopher Hewett) and starring hippie-freak Lorenzo S. Dubois, LSD for short (Dick Shawn).

THE PRODUCERS will screen at the Walter Reade Theater on Thursday, November 3 at 8:30PM and Monday, November 7 at 1:45PM.

THE TOUCH (1971) 115min

Director: Ingmar Bergman

Country: Sweden/USA

New 35mm print!

Elliott Gould turned down MCCABE & MRS. MILLER to star as an ornery, suicidal writer and archaeologist abroad (Gould) who causes a rupture in the ostensibly serene relationship between two thoughtful Swedes (Bibi Andersson and Max von Sydow). Shot by Sven Nykvist on an island near Bergman’s Fårö hideaway.

THE TOUCH will screen at the Walter Reade Theater on Thursday, November 3 at 2:00PM and Sunday, November 6 at 6:00PM. The screening on November 6 will be followed with a Q&A with Elliott Gould and filmmakers Ben and Josh Safdie (DADDY LONG LEGS).

  

WHERE’S POPPA? (1972) 82min

Director: Carl Reiner

Country: USA

A lawyer (George Segal) will stop at nothing to drive his mother (Ruth Gordon) into an early grave until he finds love—in the form of a Gentile nurse. NOV 3, 7.

WHERE’S POPPA will screen at the Walter Reade Theater on Thursday, November 3 at 4:30PM and Monday, November 7 at 8:45PM.

Screening Schedule for Hollywood’s “Jew Wave”

Screening Venue:

The Film Society of Lincoln Center – Walter Reade Theater

165 West 65 Street, between Broadway & Amsterdam (upper level)

Thursday, November 3
2:00PM          THE TOUCH (115 min)
4:30PM          WHERE’S POPPA? (82 min)
6:30PM          BYE BYE BRAVERMAN (94 min)
8:30PM          THE PRODUCERS (88 min)
 
Friday, November 4
1:15PM          THE FRONT (95 min)
3:30PM          THE GAMBLER (111 min)
6:00PM          THE HEARTBREAK KID (106 min) (includes Q&A w/Charles Grodin and  Jeannie Berlin)
8:45PM          THE PLOT AGAINST HARRY (81min)


Saturday, November 5
6:15PM          CALIFORNIA SPLIT (108 min) (includes Q&A w/Elliott Gould, Brian Koppelman and David Levein)
9:00PM          MOVE (90 min)

Sunday, November 6
2:00PM          THE PLOT AGAINST HARRY (81 min)
4:00PM          I LOVE YOU, ALICE B. TOKLAS! (92 min)
6:00PM          THE TOUCH (includes Q&A w/Elliott Gould and the Safdie brothers)
9:00PM          ANNIE HALL (93 min)

Monday, November 7
1:45PM          THE PRODUCERS (88min)
3:45PM          THE HEARTBREAK KID (106min)
6:00PM          THE FRONT (95min) (includes Q&A w/Walter Bernstein)
8:45PM          WHERE’S POPPA? (82min)

Tuesday, November 8
1:45PM          ANNIE HALL (93min)
3:45PM          CALIFORNIA SPLIT (108min)
 
Wednesday, November 9
1:00 PM         FUNNY GIRL (151 min)
4:00PM          LENNY (111 min)
 
Friday, November 11
1:45PM          I LOVE YOU, ALICE B.TOKLAS! (92min)
3:45PM          GOODBYE, COLUMBUS (102 min)
6:00PM          THE APPRENTICESHIP OF DUDDY KRAVITZ (120 min)
9:00PM          LENNY (111min)
 
Saturday, November 12
1:30PM          GOODBYE COLUMBUS (102min)
3:45PM          BYE BYE BRAVERMAN (94 min)

6:00PM          THE GAMBLER (111min) (includes Q&A w/James Toback)
9:00PM          THE ANGEL LEVINE (104 min)

Sunday, November 13
1:00PM          THE APPRENTICESHIP OF DUDDY KRAVITZ (120min)
6:00PM          THE OWL AND THE PUSSYCAT (95 min) (includes Q&A w/Buck Henry)
8:30PM          FUNNY GIRL (151min)

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