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UW-Eau Claire Announces Fall 2009 Film Series

RELEASED: Aug. 20, 2009

Hot Fuzz posterEAU CLAIRE — "Hot Fuzz" (2007), a British action-comedy satire that reunites the director and costars of "Shaun of the Dead," will open the campus film series at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire Sept. 3-6. The International Film Society will present the film at 6 and 8:30 p.m. Thursday through Sunday in Davies Theatre.

Variety calls the movie "a straight-faced British spoof of everything from Yank crimers and slasher pics to Agatha Christie whodunits and homoerotic U.S. buddy movies."

Simon Pegg stars as a by-the-book London cop who is rewarded for his exemplary service — which makes everyone else on the force look bad — by being promoted and banished to a sleepy English village. Teamed up with a bumbling constable (Nicholas Frost), he comes to suspect the town's idyllic exterior masks a murder conspiracy. Jim Broadbent and Timothy Dalton costar in the 121-minute film, which is rated R.

This year, in support of the educational value of classic and contemporary film, the UW-Eau Claire Student Senate has increased the student fee allocation for the campus films program. Admission to all campus films is free at the door with a Blugold Card or International Film Society membership card. Community members may buy an individual IFS membership for $4; a family membership costs $10. The annual memberships are available at the Service Center, 715-836-3727, in Davies Center's east lobby.

These other campus films will be presented during the fall semester:

  • "Man on Wire" (U.S. 2008), Sept. 10-13. In 1974, a young Frenchman named Philippe Petit stepped out on a wire illegally rigged between the twin towers of the World Trade Center, the world's tallest buildings. After dancing on the wire 1,350 feet above the sidewalks of Manhattan for nearly an hour, he was arrested, taken for psychological evaluation, jailed and finally released. Questioned as to why he did it, Petit could only reply, "When I see three oranges, I juggle; when I see two towers, I walk." The film received the Academy Award for Best Documentary of 2008.
  • "The Chumscrubber" (U.S.-Germany 2005), Sept. 17-20. A disaffected youth (Jamie Bell) must confront the disconnect between parents and teenagers in his suburban community when his best friend, the school's drug dealer, commits suicide. "At once dreamily surreal, acutely intelligent, and strikingly tough-minded, this pitch-dark dramatic comedy recalls David Lynch and 'Donnie Darko' while remaining fresh and original to its core," wrote the Christian Science Monitor.
  • "Akira" (Japan 1988), Sept. 24-27. In 2019, 31 years after Tokyo was destroyed by what was believed to be an atomic bomb, Neo-Tokyo has sprung from the ruins. Barely under military control, the new city is beset by civil unrest and motorcycle gangs race through the streets. Tetsuo, a troubled young member of a gang led by the breezy Kaneda, is detained for psychic experiments that begin to regenerate the force that had actually destroyed the city three decades before. Sci Fi Wire calls this landmark of animation "an electrifying science fiction fable ... the epic that taught us anime could be great."
  • "The Class" (France 2008), Oct. 1-4. Winner of the Palme d'Or at the 2008 Cannes Film Festival, this documentary-like drama covers one year in a high-school classroom in a tough suburban Paris neighborhood. Cultures and attitudes often clash as a young teacher of French engages his teenaged students in verbal jousting. His extravagant frankness often takes the students by surprise, but his classroom ethics are put to the test when his students begin to challenge his methods. The film is based on the semi-autobiographical novel by Franois Bégaudeau, who stars.
  • "Southland Tales" (Germany-U.S.-France 2006), Oct. 8-11. Richard Kelly's sprawling ensemble piece is set in Los Angeles in the aftermath of World War III and on the brink of social, economic and environmental disaster. An action star (Dwayne Johnson) with amnesia meets an adult-film star (Sarah Michelle Gellar) working on a reality-TV project and a cop (Seann William Scott) who holds the key to a vast conspiracy. "Neither disaster nor masterpiece, 'Southland Tales' again confirms that Mr. Kelly, who made a startling feature debut with 'Donnie Darko,' is one of the bright lights of his filmmaking generation," wrote The New York Times.
  • "Lars and the Real Girl" (U.S. 2007), Oct. 15-18. In a Midwestern town, an entire community embraces a delusion essential to the survival of a lonely, painfully introverted young man (Ryan Gosling) — and everyone is changed for the better. Emily Mortimer, Paul Schneider, Kelli Garner and Patricia Clarkson costar. The Oscar-nominated screenplay by Nancy Oliver ("Six Feet Under") received the Humanitas Prize; Gosling received Golden Globe and Screen Actors Guild nominations.
  • "Days of Glory" (Algeria-France-Morocco-Belgium 2006), Oct. 22-25. The forgotten story of Algerian Arabs — "indigènes" — who volunteered to fight for France in World War II is told in this gritty, old-fashioned war movie, an Oscar nominee for Best Foreign Language Film. New York Magazine calls it "a rousing memorial to the Muslims who fought against Germany — and fought because they wanted to be Frenchmen." The film's four key players collectively received the Best Actor award at the Cannes Film Festival.
  • "Plan 9 from Outer Space" (U.S. 1959), Oct. 29-Nov. 1. Although Ed Wood's camp classic has been voted the worst film of all time, some argue that it's so bad that it's good. "The plot brings monsters from outer space to rob our graveyards, rejuvenate whatever is left of the dead and make robot-like slaves out of them," wrote film distributor Kit Parker. "But we quickly discover we can't tell the robot monsters from the straight actors. This little number hit such an outrageous low that every moment of it is hilarious."
  • "O Lucky Man!" (U.K.-U.S. 1973), Nov. 5-8. The picaresque adventures of the good-natured Mick Travis (Malcolm McDowell) are traced on his journey through life, from his first job as a coffee salesman to his being cast as the perfect innocent in a movie. Loosely conceived as a sequel to "If...," Lindsay Anderson's satirical odyssey targets advertising, the military, politics, science, religion, class and filmmaking itself.
  • "Fantastic Planet" (France-Czechoslovakia 1973), Nov. 12-15. Animation, philosophy and surrealism combine in this underground masterpiece about a futuristic planet where two races have evolved. The giant blue Draags are the ruling class, subjugating the primitive Oms, human-like beings who are kept as domesticated pets. Ren Laloux's allegory won the grand prize at the 1973 Cannes Film Festival.
  • "Waltz with Bashir" (Israel-France-Germany-U.S. 2008), Nov. 19-22. Documentary filmmaker Ari Folman uses animation to reconstruct and come to terms with a massacre that occurred during Israel's 1982 invasion of Lebanon — a memory he had completely suppressed. Nominated for an Academy Award, the film won the Golden Globe for Best Foreign Language Film of 2008.
  • "Before the Rain" (Republic of Macedonia-France-U.K. 1994), Dec. 3-6. The first film made in the newly independent Republic of Macedonia, Milcho Manchevski's film is a lyrical portrait of ethnic and religious hatred that remains one of recent cinema's most powerful laments on the futility of war. Made during the strife of the war-torn Balkan states in the 1990s, the three-episode drama puts the conflict into context by examining its impact upon personal relationships.
  • "C.R.A.Z.Y." (Canada 2005), Dec. 10-13. Born Christmas Day 1960, Zac is the fourth in a family of five sons growing up in a strict but loving Catholic household in Montreal. An unsentimental, heartwarming coming-of-age movie unwinding over 20 years, Jean-Marc Vallée's film is ultimately the story of a beautifully ordinary family, of parental love and of the challenges of growing up different.

The films all screen 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 online.

The campus film program is funded by the students of UW-Eau Claire. Films are selected and presented by the all-student University Activities Commission of the UW-Eau Claire Student Senate, and the International Film Society, an administrative committee composed of students, faculty/staff and community members. Since 1957 the International Film Series has represented various countries, cinematic styles, directorial methods, genres, and points of view, in films that help bring about a better understanding of other cultures as well as a lifelong love of film. The committees are advised by the University Centers Activities and Programs office.

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JS/KH

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