NJ Film Festival

Second Chance Cinema

Mainstream Flicks


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Published in U.S. 1 Newspaper on February 16, 2000. All rights


Film: Japanese New Wave

Japanese `New Wave’ Cinema," a 10-week series of

classic and rare films began this month, presented by Princeton


East Asian Studies Program. The new series comes on the heels of last

year’s resoundingly successful debut, "Classics of Chinese Cinema

1933 to 1949," that brought together community film buffs and

interested members of the expatriate community.

This week’s screening, on Monday, February 21, features She and

He, a 1963 fictional drama by documentary director Hani Susumu

about an unhappy newlywed. With a social consciousness and eye for

detail, Susumu depicts the psychological and emotional travails of

a young woman discontent with her new life in a high-rise complex

who befriends a slum-dweller living in poverty with his dog and a

blind orphan. By reminding the young wife of her own lonely days as

an orphan in Manchuria, the relationship exacerbates her ambivalent

feelings toward her new middle-class life.

Princeton professor Christine Marran, who teaches contemporary


literature and film, says the 1960s was a time of political unrest

in Japan. "These directors are thinking about problems of American

cultural imperialism, and the fallout from Japanese imperialist


before and during the war. Through themes of sex of violence, they

are not only raising a critical voice toward Japan’s authoritative

institutions, they are also posing new alternatives." This is

accomplished, she says, through intense stories, many set in the


of society, focusing on poor, marginalized, and disenfranchised


The term "new wave" is loosely applied in Japan, where film

is not a highly valued form. As in the French "new wave" film

of the same decade, the medium is foregrounded. However, whereas the

French wave is not explicitly political, the Japanese work is.

Also notable is the way that the tradition of Japanese theater arts

is reconfigured through film. Marran says you can identify the


use of the "freeze-frame" moment derived from traditional

Kabuki theater. And in "Double Suicide" of 1969, Masahiro

Shinoda adapts a classic of the Bunraku puppet theater of the 1700s

to film. "The director transforms the tradition into film giving

it a wonderful three-dimensionality that it doesn’t have in the


she says.

Although the major works of Akira Kurosawa, arguably Japan’s best

known director in the U.S. were made in the 1940s and ’50s (his 1951

"Rashomon" won the Venice film prize, bringing his work to

international audiences), his work is represented in the series by

the rarely-seen "Dodes’kaden" (1970), his first film in color.

This hypnotically beautiful work is set in a slum community, Kurosawa

joins the "new wave" directors in their theme of


and cruelty.

Japanese New Wave Cinema, a 10-week series of classic

and rare films that began this month, presented by Princeton


East Asian Studies Program, screens Mondays, at 7 p.m., in the James

Stewart Film Theater, 185 Nassau Street. Free. 609-258-5722.

She and He, by documentary director Hani Susumu, Monday,

February 21. Street of Shame (1956), Kenji Mizoguchi’s last

film, set in a Tokyo brothel, that is credited with bringing about

the abolition of prostitution in Japan in 1957, Monday, February 28.

Gate of Flesh, March 6. Death By Hanging, Monday, March


Man Who Left His Will on Film, Monday, April 3. Double

Suicide , Monday, April 10. Farewell, Ark, Monday, April 17.

Dodes’kaden, Akira Kurosawa’s first film in color, April 24.

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NJ Film Festival

New Jersey Film Festival is presented by the Rutgers Film

Co-op/New Jersey Media Arts Center. Screenings are Fridays through

Sunday in Scott Hall, Room 123, College Avenue campus. Thursday


are in Loree Hall, Room 024, Douglass College campus; with selected

free events at Borders Books, Route 18 South, East Brunswick. Films

are $5, $8, & $10; all programs begin at 7 p.m. Call 732-932-8482.

United States Super-8 Film & Video Festival. The only

juried show of its kind that attracts entries from across the U.S.

and abroad, $6, Friday to Sunday, February 18 to 20. Friday’s


"Stretchmark," about a single mother, by Veena Sud of Jersey

City; and "Contretemps of Christmas," a dark holiday tale

by Natasha Uppal. Saturday: "Bright Idea," a short by Nate

Millimeter of Mercerville in which boredom leads to a shocking


and "More Intimacy" by Chun-Hui Wu of San Francisco. Sunday:

"Ready to Bare," a parable about freedom; and "Close to

Home" about growing up black and gay in a conservative family.

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Second Chance Cinema

Second Chance Cinema, presented by Princeton Adult School.

Weekly screenings of 13 films, Wednesday evenings at 7:30 p.m., at

Kresge Auditorium, Princeton University. $55 series; $5 single



Boys Don’t Cry, Hilary Swank’s portrayal of gender-bending

Brandon Teena won her the Golden Globe’s best actress award, directed

by Kimberly Peirce, Wednesday, February 16. Lolita, Adrian


1998 remake, with Jeremy Irons, Frank Langella and Melanie Griffith,

Wednesday, February 23.

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Mainstream Flicks

Confirm titles with theaters.

Angela’s Ashes. Frank McCourt’s bestselling


a. AMC, Loews, Mercer, Montgomery, Regal.

Any Given Sunday. Director Oliver Stone pits brash youth

against experience on the football field, where Al Pacino plays a

curmudgeonly coach. AMC.

The Beach. Leonardo DiCaprio returns in a role that begs

him to remove his shirt. AMC, Destinta, Loews, Mercer, Regal.

Being John Malkovich. John Cusack plays a puppeteer who

accidentally enters Malkovich’s mind. MarketFair.

The Cider House Rules. Michael Caine stars in a rendition

of John Irving’s 1985 best-seller. AMC, Regal.

Down to You. Freddie Prinze Jr. and Julia Stiles in a

Generation-Y romance. AMC, Destinta, Loews, MarketFair,


The End of the Affair. Ralph Fiennes and Julianne Moore

play an adulterous couple during World War II. AMC, Loews,


Eye of the Beholder. Intelligence officer Ewan McGregor

finds himself obsessed with master criminal Ashley Judd. AMC,

Destinta, Loews, MarketFair, Montgomery, Regal.

Galaxy Quest. Tim Allen plays a has-been sci-fi TV show

star recruited by aliens to save their planet. AMC, Destinta,

East Windsor, Loews, MarketFair.

Girl, Interrupted. Winona Ryder and Angelina Jolie star

in the story of a woman’s commitment to a mental hospital. AMC,

Destinta, Loews, MarketFair.

The Green Mile. Michael Clarke Duncan and Tom Hanks star

in a story about an innocent man with miraculous powers. AMC,

Destinta, Loews, MarketFair.

Gun-Shy. Liam Neeson works undercover in an organized

crime sting. Loews, Regal.

The Hurricane. Denzel Washington stars as the New Jersey

boxer framed for a murder. AMC, Destinta, Loews, Mercer, Regal.

Isn’t She Great? Bette Midler and Nathan Lane in the story

of `Valley of the Dolls’ author Jacqueline Susann. AMC,



Magnolia. A desperate day on a San Fernando Valley


starring Tom Cruise. AMC.

Next Friday. Ice Cube returns in the sequel to 1995’s

`Friday.’ AMC, Destinta, Loews.

Rear Window. The restored version of Alfred Hitchcock’s

thriller with James Stewart and Grace Kelly. Montgomery.

Scream 3. Neve Campbell, David Arquette and Courtney


return. AMC, Destinta, Loews, Garden, Mercer, Montgomery,


Simpatico. Nick Nolte, Jeff Bridges, and Sharon Stone

star in Matthew Waschus’ adaptation of the Sam Shepard play. AMC,

MarketFair, Regal.

The Sixth Sense. Bruce Willis as a psychologist aiding

a boy who communicates with the dead. M. Night Shyamalan directs.

AMC, Destinta, Mercer.

Snow Day. Chevy Chase and Chris Elliott. AMC,


Loews, Montgomery, Regal.

Snow Falling On Cedars. The bestselling novel of the


starring Ethan Hawke and Youki Kudoh. East Windsor,


Stuart Little. State-of-the-art moviemaking brings E.B.

White’s mouse to the big screen. AMC, Destinta, Loews, Mercer,


Supernova. James Spader and Angela Bassett. AMC.

Sweet and Lowdown. Woody Allen directs his latest feature

about a stellar jazz guitarist with a troubled private life. Sean

Penn plays the musician. MarketFair.

The Talented Mr. Ripley. Matt Damon and Gwyneth Paltrow

star in this thriller based on the Patricia Highsmith novel. AMC,

Loews, Mercer, Regal.

The Tigger Movie. Winnie the Pooh and company with the

voices of Jim Cummings and John Hurt. AMC, Destinta, Loews,


Montgomery, Regal.

Topsy-Turvy. A humorous look at the Victorian world of

Gilbert and Sullivan. AMC, Garden, Mercer, Montgomery,


Toy Story 2. An animated feature with the voices of Tom

Hanks and Tim Allen. AMC, Loews.

Top Of Page

AMC Hamilton 24 Theaters, 325 Sloan Avenue, I-295 Exit

65A, 609-890-8307. 24-screen, stadium-seating multiplex. $7 adults;

$5 matinees; $5 twilight.

Destinta, Independence Plaza, 2465 South Broad Street,

Hamilton, 609-888-4500. Stadium-seating 12-screen multiplex. $6.75

adults; $5 matinees.

East Windsor Cinemas, Routes 130 and 571, 609-443-9295.

$3 adults; $2.50 matinees. Features Indian language films.

Garden Theater, 160 Nassau Street, 609-683-7595. $6.50

adults; $4 matinees.

Loews Theaters, Route 1 South, New Brunswick,


$8.50; $5.25 matinees.

MarketFair-UA,Route1, 609-520-8700. $7.50; $4.75


Mercer Mall, Route 1, 609-452-2868. $7.25 adults; $4.75


Montgomery Center Theater, Routes 206 and 518,

609-924-7444. $7 adults; $4.25 matinees.

Regal Cinemas, 319 Route 130 North, East Windsor,


Stadium-seating, 15 screens. $8; $5 matinees.

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