As we wait for improvement in the current conditions with COVID-19, NO FESTIVAL REQUIRED will be selecting great films to virtually screen. We proudly present these films as the thoughtful, provocative content we’ve always shared.
PARIS CALLIGRAMMES, a film by Ulrike Ottinger
Starts Virtual Cinema presentation on April 30, 2021
About the film
Paris Calligrammes is a rich, kaleidoscopic torrent of archival audio and visuals, paired with Ottinger’s artwork and excerpts from her films. She compellingly resurrects the old Saint-Germain-des-Prés and Latin Quarter, with their literary cafés and jazz clubs, and revisits encounters with Jewish exiles, life with her artistic community, the worldviews of Parisian ethnologists and philosophers, the political upheavals of the Algerian War and May 1968, and the legacy of the colonial era.
About the director
Ulrike Ottinger has directed 26 films, including fiction, experimental and documentary features. Among other awards, she was honored for her oeuvre with a 2012 Teddy Award at the Berlin Film Festival.
Selected FestivalsBerlin International Film Festival
San Francisco International Film Festival
Amsterdam International Documentary Festival (IDFA)
Melbourne International Film Festival
Ankara International Film Festival
Vancouver Internaional Film Festival
Moscow International Film Festival
FID Marseille Documentary Festival
Brisbane International Film Festival
DOC NYC Documentary Film Festival
In the Press
“One of the great works of first-person cinema. Ottinger’s personal and political masterwork. Extraordinary; a work of vital and energetic modernism.”
—Richard Brody, The New Yorker
“Enriching, stimulating; vital and contradictory. Captures the zeitgeist as experienced by a young woman eager to soak up the cultural riches around her, which she then distilled through her own sensibility to create paintings reflecting the era’s upheavals.”
—Jay Weissberg, Variety
“Never a dull moment; the work of a consummate artist who understands the importance of the form matching the story.”
—Kaleem Aftab, Cineuropa
“Her cinema is restless, Odyssean: full of stories of exile and adventure. [‘Paris Calligrammes’ is] an homage to the intellectual and artistic life of the city in the 1960s.”
—Amy Sherlock, Frieze Magazine
Paris Calligrammes A film by Ulrike Ottinger. Germany/France. 131 minutes. 1:1.85, Dolby 5.1. Language versions: In English (narrated by Jenny Agutter); in German (narrated by Ulrike Ottinger); and in French (narrated by Fanny Ardant). Icarus Films release.
Heartworn Highways, directed by James Szalapski
Townes Van Zandt
David Alan Coe
Larry Jon Wilson
$10. FOR A FIVE-DAY PASS TO VIEW! TRAILER AT THIS LINK
“Sometimes, a documentary maker is present at precisely the right moment to capture lightning in a bottle. It happened with essential punk doc The Decline of Western Civilization, it happened with Dylan’s Don’t Look Back and Chet Baker’s Let’s Get Lost, and it happened with 1976’s Heartworn Highways.
The iconic performance documentary saw filmmaker James Szalapski travel to Texas and Tennessee to capture the radical country artists reclaiming the genre via an appreciation for its heritage in folk and bluegrass and a rejection of the mainstream Nashville machine. Townes Van Zandt, Guy Clark, Steve Young, David Allan Coe, Steve Earle and many others appeared on both screen and soundtrack, where musical highlights include Clark’s brilliant “Desperados Waiting For A Train,” Young’s stirring “Alabama Highways” and Van Zandt’s emotional “Waiting Around To Die.”
The hard living – and hard partying – lifestyles of outlaw country’s figureheads are played out on screen as we visit Van Zandt’s Austin trailer, see Coe play in Tennessee State Prison, join the gang in Nashville’s notorious Wig Wam Tavern and witness a liquor-fueled Christmas at Clark’s house. No wonder the film’s original tagline read: “The best music and the best whiskey come from the same part of the country”.
Outside of a couple festival screenings, the movie remained unreleased for five years after its completion, finally hitting screens in 1981 and finding a cult audience ever since.”
– Light in the Attic
M.C. ESHER: JOURNEY TO INFINITY, a film by Robin Lutz
$12.00 5-DAY PASS TO VIEW! TRAILER IN LINK
M.C. Escher: Journey To Infinity is the story of world famous Dutch graphic
artist M.C Escher (1898-1972). Equal parts history, psychology, and
psychedelia, Robin Lutz’s entertaining, eye-opening portrait gives us the
man through his own words and images: diary musings, excerpts from
lectures, correspondence and more are voiced by British actor Stephen Fry,
while Escher’s woodcuts, lithographs, and other print works appear in both
original and playfully altered form.
Two of his sons, George (92) and Jan (80), reminisce about their parents
while musician Graham Nash (Crosby, Stills & Nash) talks about Escher’s
rediscovery in the 1970s. The film looks at Escher’s legacy: one can see
tributes to his work in movies, in fiction, on posters, on tattoos, and
elsewhere throughout our culture; indeed, few fine artists of the 20th
century can lay claim to such popular appeal.
KOSHIEN:JAPAN’S FIELD OF DREAMS, directed by Ema Ryan Yamazaki
Rental $10.00 48 hour streaming period
RENTAL LINK AND TRAILER-https://watch.firstrunfeatures.com/products/koshien-at-no-festival-required
Baseball is life for the die-hard competitors in the 100th annual Koshien, Japan’s wildly popular national high school baseball championship, whose alumni include U.S. baseball star Shohei Ohtani and former Yankee Hideki Matsui. But for Coach Mizutani and his players, cleaning the grounds and greeting their guests are equally important as honing their baseball skills. In director Ema Ryan Yamazaki’s dramatic and intimate journey to the heart of the Japanese national character, will those acts add up to victory or prove a relic of the past?
HELMUT NEWTON: THE BAD AND THE BEAUTIFUL
DIRECTED BY GERO VON BOEHM
$12.00 for 5 days
Rental 12.00-One ticket good for a five-day pass to see Helmut Newton: The Bad and the Beautiful. Your purchase supports No Festival Required.
One of the great masters of photography, Helmut Newton made a name for himself exploring the female form, and his cult status continues long after his tragic death in a Los Angeles car crash in 2004.
Newton worked around the globe, from Singapore to Australia to Paris to Los Angeles, but Weimar Germany was the visual hallmark of his work. Newton’s unique and striking way of depicting women has always posed the question: did he empower his subjects or treat them as sexual objects?
Through candid interviews with Grace Jones, Charlotte Rampling, Isabella Rossellini, Anna Wintour, Claudia Schiffer, Marianne Faithfull, Hanna Schygulla, Nadja Auermann, and Newton’s wife June (a.k.a. photographer Alice Springs), this documentary captures his legacy and seeks to answer questions about the themes at the core of his life’s work – creating provocative and subversive images of women. The film also features Newton’s own home movies, archival footage (including a pointed exchange with Susan Sontag) and, of course, scores of iconic Newton photographs. The result: a wildly entertaining portrait of a controversial genius
JAZZ ON A SUMMER’S DAY-DIRECTED BY BERT STERN
Note: This is a personal favorite!
$10.00 for 5 days
Filmed at the 1958 Newport Jazz Festival and directed by world-renowned photographer Bert Stern, Jazz on a Summer’s Day features intimate performances by an all-star line-up of musical legends including Louis Armstrong, Thelonious Monk, Gerry Mulligan, Anita O’Day, Chuck Berry, Dinah Washington, and closes with a beautiful rendition or The Lord’s Prayer by Mahalia Jackson at midnight to usher in Sunday morning.