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'Empire Records' to Open Fall
Film Schedule at UW-Eau Claire

RELEASED: Aug. 29, 2006

Empire Records posterEAU CLAIRE — The employees of an independent music store will do whatever they can to prevent a buyout by a big record chain in "Empire Records" (1995), a music-filled cult favorite that will open the campus film series Sept. 1-3 at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire.

The University Activities Commission will present the film at 6 and 8:30 p.m. Friday though Sunday in Davies Theatre.

"Liv Tyler leads a future-star-studded cast as a Harvard-bound brain," wrote the A.V. Club. "Renee Zellweger costars as the store's resident tramp, while troubled, chrome-domed Robin Tunney plays a sentient cry for help masquerading as a troubled clerk. Over the course of roughly 24 hours, hearts are broken and then restored, the employees come to understand each other, and revelations and potentially life-altering decisions are doled out at a rapid clip. And, every 10 minutes or so, the cast takes a break to boogie and bop about to a ubiquitous soundtrack of alt-rock chestnuts from the likes of Better Than Ezra and Toad The Wet Sprocket."

Directed by Allan Moyle, the 107-minute film is rated PG-13. Admission is free at the door. The film is sponsored by the University Activities Commission of the UW-Eau Claire Student Senate.

Sunday night's first showing will be the first of the campus film program's "Subtitle Sundays." All 6 p.m. Sunday film screenings throughout the year will be shown with closed captioning when available. Subtitles will be on (if available) in place of closed captioning when necessary.

Admission to the remaining fall semester films is $2 for International Film Society members and UW-Eau Claire faculty and staff or $1 for UW-Eau Claire students. Membership in the International Film Society enables community members to purchase tickets to campus films throughout the year. Members also receive a newsletter with advance information about campus films. An individual IFS membership costs $4; a family membership costs $10. Memberships and tickets are available at the Service Center, 715-836-3727, in Davies Center's east lobby.

Other fall semester films include the following:

  • "Tsotsi" (U.K.-South Africa 2005), Sept. 7-10. A compelling story of crime and redemption set on the edges of Johannesburg. Tsotsi is an emotionless young killer whose existence has no meaning beyond survival. His life takes a sharp turn when he discovers a baby boy in the back seat of a car he steals. Oscar winner for Best Foreign Language Film.
  • "Everything Is Illuminated" (U.S. 2005), Sept. 14-17. A compulsive young writer (Elijah Wood) who catalogues his family history sets off to capture an elusive memory — traveling to the Ukraine to find the woman who saved his grandfather from the Nazis. The hilariously tortured English of his guide (Eugene Hutz) narrates this journey of discovery, adapted from the novel by Jonathan Safran Foer.
  • "Brick" (U.S. 2005), Sept 21-24. Stylish, hard-boiled film noir mystery in a surprising contemporary setting — the environs of a Southern California high school. Shot for under $500,000 and "true to the genre that inspired it" (Roger Ebert), the film won the Special Jury Prize for Originality of Vision at the Sundance Film Festival.
  • "Schultze Gets the Blues" (Germany 2003), Sept. 28-Oct. 1. In a dreary German mining town, a man is forced into early retirement. Schultze fills his days with naps and visits to his mother at a nursing home, and he plays his accordion at a polka club. One night his dull life is transformed when he flicks on the radio and hears the sound of zydeco. He picks up his accordion and begins an odyssey that will take him deep into the swamps and bayous of Louisiana ... and back again.
  • "Arsenic and Old Lace" (U.S. 1944), Oct. 5-8. On his wedding day, drama critic Mortimer Brewster (Cary Grant) discovers that insanity runs in his family. His two kindly aunts poison lonely old men as an act of charity. Their brother, believing he is Teddy Roosevelt, dutifully buries the "yellow fever victims" while he digs the Panama Canal in their Brooklyn basement. When his long-lost brother Jonathan — an escaped psychopath — arrives for a visit, Mortimer suspects he shouldn't be the marrying kind after all.
  • "Elevator to the Gallows" (France 1958), Oct. 12-15. Louis Malle's debut feature brought together the beauty of Jeanne Moreau, the cinematography of Henri Decae, and a now-legendary score by Miles Davis. A touchstone in the careers of its star and director, the richly atmospheric thriller about murder and mistaken identity unfolds over one restless Paris night.
  • "Ordinary People" (U.S. 1980), Oct. 19-22. This Oscar-winning Best Picture studies a wealthy suburban family in the aftermath of a tragedy — the accidental death of its elder son, and the attempted suicide of its younger (Academy Award winner Timothy Hutton). Mary Tyler Moore is the perfect mother who maintains that the family can solve its own problems; Donald Sutherland is the father who is holding his shattered family together.
  • "Primer" (U.S. 2004), Oct. 26-29. Two men are building a machine in their garage. They know it will be important and powerful, but they don't know what it does. Roger Ebert called this low-budget debut feature — named Best Drama at Sundance — "a puzzle film that will leave you wondering about paradoxes, loopholes, loose ends, events without explanation, chronologies that don't seem to fit… The movie delights me with its cocky confidence that the audience can keep up."
  • "The Talented Mr. Ripley" (U.S. 1999), Nov. 2-5. A wealthy American industrialist hires Tom Ripley (Matt Damon) to bring his wayward-playboy son Dickie (Jude Law) back to America. Upon arriving in Italy, Ripley becomes obsessed with Dickie, his posh lifestyle and his beautiful girlfriend (Gwyneth Paltrow) — so obsessed, in fact, that he decides to make Dickie's life his own. The stylish thriller is adapted from the 1955 novel by Patricia Highsmith ("Strangers on a Train").
  • "Rocky Road to Dublin" (Ireland 1968) and "The Making of Rocky Road to Dublin" (Ireland 2004), Nov. 9-12. In his biting portrait of 1960s Ireland, Peter Lennon captured a society characterized by a stultifying educational system, a morally repressive and politically reactionary clergy, a myopic cultural nationalism, and a government that knew no boundary between church and state. The "making of" documentary that follows reunites Lennon and cinematographer Raoul Coutard, who recount the making of their then controversial but now classic documentary.
  • "Rory O'Shea Was Here" (U.K.-France 2004), Nov. 16-19. Rory O'Shea is a kinetic Dublin punk with energy to spare, but he also happens to be confined to a wheelchair with movement in only two fingers. He gets out of the "system" by convincing his tentative and speech-impaired friend Michael to apply for independent living and then volunteers to be his interpreter. He has all the hopes and dreams of the fully abled and he is not going to let a disability keep him behind for long in this inspiring and humorous film.
  • "The Great Escape" (U.S. 1963), Nov. 30-Dec. 3. In 1945, a group of Allied airmen plan an audacious escape from the Nazis' top maximum-security P.O.W. camp. Steve McQueen, James Garner, Richard Attenborough, Charles Bronson, Donald Pleasence and James Coburn headline a top-notch international cast in this suspenseful WW2 blockbuster, based on a true story.
  • "The Chorus" (France-Switzerland-Germany 2004), Dec. 7-10. In a fortress of a school in France in 1948, professor Clement Mathieu sees a chance to bring some joy to the young boys' lives by establishing a chorus. His decision angers the headmaster, so he must proceed in secret, but the power of music and his generosity of self changes his students forever.
  • "Howl's Moving Castle" (Japan 2004), Dec. 14-17. A young girl named Sophie is literally swept off her feet by a handsome, mysterious wizard named Howl. Cursed by a witch who is jealous of their friendship, Sophie climbs aboard Howl's magnificent flying castle and enters a magical world on a quest to break the spell. The animated feature stars the vocal talents of Emily Mortimer, Lauren Bacall, Christian Bale and Billy Crystal.

Presented by the International Film Society and the University Activities Commission of the UW-Eau Claire Student Senate, the films most often screen at 6 and 8:30 p.m. in Davies Theatre, a 250-seat theater in Davies Center on UW-Eau Claire's lower campus. Complete schedule information is available from the Activities and Programs office, 715-836-4833, or on the Web.



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