Winter Film Series 2018


Don’t we all need a laugh right about now?  The Winter Film Series insists you leave with a smile on your face.  From Jean Harlow to Steve Martin, from Hollywood to Italy to Japan, from the silent era to the dawning of this new century, you’re bound to find something that tickles your fancy.

January 9:

The In-Laws (1979) Directed by Arthur Hiller.  Peter Falk, Alan Arkin, Richard Libertini.  (103 min) Blu-Ray.

Uptight dentist Sheldon Kornpett’s daughter is getting married and he finally meets the groom’s father…is he CIA…or just flat out insane?  Arkin and Falk are a faultless comedy duo embarking on a questionable secret mission.  Even the New York Times reviewer admitted she laughed until she cried.   “Fueled by elaborate stunt work and the laconic, naturalistic charms of its two stars, The In-Laws deserves its status as a madcap classic” (Criterion Collection). Film notes for The In-Laws

January 19:

Il Boom (1963) Directed by Vittorio De Sica. Alberto Sordi, Gianna Maria Canale, Elena Nicolai (85 min) DCP

Giovanni is living La Dolce Vita in Rome, and now he’s in debt up to his eyeballs.  Reveling in the mid-century high style driving its hero to the poorhouse, Il Boom is a sharp satire of post war strivers, from DeSica, an icon of neo-realism.  “Real people caught in a surreal world, reacting in recognizable ways to a society rapidly spinning out of control makes Il Boom so vibrant, funny, and disturbing (Village Voice). Film notes for Il Boom

February 2:

Bombshell (1933) Directed by Victor Fleming. Jean Harlow, Lee Tracy, Frank Morgan (86 min) DVD

A dizzy blonde movie queen’s life is spinning out of control.  Besieged by the “pack of leeches,” her family and so-called friends, she searches for love in all the wrong places.  Crackerjack Pre-Code wisecracks abound in this fascinating peep inside the MGM dream factory. “Bombshell makes for stellar entertainment. Harlow is glorious in every frame, because she’s so perfectly imperfect: charming, infuriating, delightful, immature, divine, common, childish, glorious, stubborn.  (Warner Archive). Film Notes for Bombshell.

February 9:

Stand-In (1937) Directed by Tay Garnett.  Leslie Howard, Joan Blondell, Humphrey Bogart (91 min) 35mm from UNCSA

Atterbury Dodd is a stuffy New York banker, sent to Hollywood from Wall Street to straighten out the tangled finances of Colossal Studios. Crossing paths with a peppy former child star, he learns that people’s lives don’t always fit between the lines on a spread sheet. “Bogie is surprisingly funny in his first comedic role, and Blondell is, as always, sassy and smart” (The Discerning Film Lover’s Guide). Film Notes for Stand-In

February 16:

Bowfinger (1999) Directed by Frank Oz.  Written by and Starring Steve Martin, with Eddie Murphy, Robert Downey, Jr. (97 min) PG-13 35mm from UNCSA

Bobby Bowfinger is a bottom-feeding producer with a sure-fire alien invasion script called “Chubby Rain” but no cash and no star.  Perhaps, if he follows action hero Kit Ramsey around town and films him secretly, he can conjure box office gold.  “Martin’s disciplined script — bitingly funny but tolerant, bemused rather than bitter — and the unfogged high beams he turns on everything…is dramatically energized by director Frank Oz. (Entertainment Weekly) Film notes for Bowfinger.

March 2:

High Fidelity (2000) Directed by Stephen Frears.  John Cusack, Iben Hjejle, Jack Black (113 min) 35mm

Rob makes lists.  It helps him make sense of things--if he reviews his top five breakups, can he do better next time?  Nick Hornby’s novel spun vinyl in London, now shifted to Chicago and set to a killer soundtrack, it remains delightfully true to the spirit of pop culture obsessives.  “High Fidelity, with its knowing take on men, messed-up romance and music, is like one long, hook-filled pop song for the eyes” (Phildelphia Inquirer) Film Notes for High Fidelity

March 9:

A program of silent short films in 35mm from the Library of Congress, with live music by Ethan Uslan.  Selected by silent comedy expert Rob Stone.

Gentleman of Nerve (1914) Charlie Chaplin, Mabel Normand, One Week (1920) Buster Keaton, Sybil Seely, The Bell Hop (1921) Larry Semon, Oliver Hardy, Dogs of War (1923) Our Gang, Harold Lloyd, Dog Shy (1926) Charley Chase, Stuart Holmes, Big Business (1929) Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy. Film notes for silent comedy shorts.

March 16:

Tampopo (1985) Written and directed by Juzo Itami.  Ken Watanabe, Tsutomu Yamazaki, Nobuko Miyamoto (116 min) DCP

A roving ramen samurai takes a struggling noodle shop under his wing, promising delicious success to its timid proprietor.  Mixing vingnettes about our relationships with food (and sex) this offbeat comedy creates a delicious food odyssey.  “Itami creates a scene that makes noodles in this movie more interesting than sex and violence in many another… This is a very funny movie” (Roger Ebert).  Introduced by Japanese film expert Linda Ehrlich.



All films are shown in 35mm when possible, check listings for format

Fridays at 8:00 pm unless noted

The galleries and Iris After Dark will be open prior to screenings

Box Office: (919) 715-5923

Tickets to most films: $7.00/$5.00 NCMA Members

Special Events may have different pricing

Introductions are by Film Curator Laura Boyes unless otherwise noted.

For more information about the NC Museum of Art: