Wings
  Featured Film
WINGS

University at Albany Campus
Maps and Directions

 


 


THE CENTER FOR THE LITERARY ARTS IN NEW YORK STATE

SPRING 2015 CLASSIC FILM SERIES
Events are free and open to the public and located at Page Hall, 135 Western Avenue, on UAlbany’s Downtown Campus,
unless otherwise noted.

William A. Wellman





The Public Enemy

WILLIAM A. WELLMAN FILM FESTIVAL
The Writers Institute will screen five examples of the best work of legendary Hollywood director William A. Wellman. Displaying a remarkable range of styles and interests over the course of his long and prolific career, the films will include THE PUBLIC ENEMY, NOTHING SACRED, BEAU GESTE, YELLOW SKY, and the silent WINGS, with live musical accompaniment. The series will culminate with an appearance by the director’s son, William Wellman, Jr., who will discuss his new biography, Wild Bill Wellman: Hollywood Rebel (2015). (See Friday, May 1 listing for details.)

THE PUBLIC ENEMY
January 30 (Friday)
Film screening — 7:30 p.m., Page Hall, 135 Western Avenue, Downtown Campus

Directed by William A. Wellman (United States, 1931, 83 minutes, b/w)
Starring James Cagney, Jean Harlow, Edward Woods

Two young hoodlums seek fame and fortune in the Chicago Underworld in this classic American gangster film. An early soundie based on an unpublished novel by two former street thugs turned screenwriters, the film earned an Oscar nomination for “Best Writing,” and was widely admired for its knowledgeable depiction of the practical mechanics of Prohibition Era bootlegging.


Let The Fire Burn

LET THE FIRE BURN
February 6 (Friday)
Film screening and discussion with director Jason Osder — 7:00 p.m. [note early start time],
Page Hall, 135 Western Avenue, Downtown Campus

Directed by Jason Osder (United States, 2013, 88 minutes, b/w and color)
Starring Birdie Africa, Ramona Africa, Wilson Goode

This multiple award-winning documentary presents a history of the tragic conflict between the City of Philadelphia and the Black Liberation organization, MOVE in the mid-1980s. The Variety reviewer said, “The brilliantly edited tapestry of actions and reactions exposes a pattern of prejudice and fear capable of infinitely repeating itself.”

Jason OsderJason Osder teaches documentary filmmaking at the George Washington University. He is also coauthor of the filmmaking guide, Final Cut Pro Workflows: The Independent Studio Handbook (2007).

Sponsored in conjunction with UAlbany’s School of Criminal Justice’s Civility, Surveillance, and Public Spaces Film Series


Night Catches Us

 

 

NIGHT CATCHES US
February 13 (Friday)
Film screening and discussion with director and screenwriter Tanya Hamilton and producer
Ron Simons — 7:00 p.m. [note early start time], Page Hall, 135 Western Avenue, Downtown Campus

Directed by Tanya Hamilton (United States, 2010, 90 minutes, color)
Starring Anthony Mackie, Kerry Washington, Jamara Griffin

A finalist for the Grand Jury Prize at Sundance, NIGHT CATCHES US is a powerful evocation of the American inner city in 1976. A former Black Panther returns to his old Philadelphia neighborhood, where he confronts the unresolved problems of his past. Peter Travers of Rolling Stone said, “Tanya Hamilton's first feature as a director, is something to cherish…. She lets her mesmerizing movie sneak up on you and seep in until you feel it in your bones.”

Tanya HamiltonTanya Hamilton, director and screenwriter, is a former Fellow at the Sundance Screenwriter and Filmmaker Lab, and was honored for Outstanding Achievement By a Woman in the Film Industry by the Alliance of Women Film Journalists in 2010.


Ronald SimonsRon Simons, producer of Night Catches Us, is also a three-time Tony Award winning Broadway producer for A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder (Best Musical, 2014), Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike (Best Play, 2013) and Porgy & Bess (Best Revival, 2012).


Sponsored in conjunction with UAlbany’s School of Criminal Justice’s
Civility, Surveillance, and Public Spaces Film Series


Nothing Sacred

 

WILLIAM A. WELLMAN FILM FESTIVAL
NOTHING SACRED
February 20 (Friday)
Film screening — 7:30 p.m., Page Hall, 135 Western Avenue, Downtown Campus

Directed by William A. Wellman (United States, 1937, 77 minutes, color)
Starring Carole Lombard, Fredric March, Charles Winninger

This beloved gem of the screwball comedy genre features the verbal fireworks of screenwriter Ben Hecht. A woman wrongly compensated by her employer for a misdiagnosed case of radium poisoning decides to accept the money anyway and spend it on one grand “last hurrah.” A reporter seeking a story comes along for the ride, and an epic battle of the sexes ensues.

Beau Geste

 


WILLIAM A. WELLMAN FILM FESTIVAL
BEAU GESTE
February 27 (Friday)
Film screening — 7:30 p.m., Page Hall, 135 Western Avenue, Downtown Campus

Directed by William A. Wellman (United States, 1939, 112 minutes, b/w)
Starring Gary Cooper, Ray Milland, Robert Preston

In this all-time classic action-adventure film, three brothers under suspicion of theft run off to join the French Foreign Legion. At a remote desert fort in North Africa they struggle to survive a siege in which they are hopelessly outnumbered. A contemporary Variety reviewer praised the film for its “vigorous realism and spectacular sweep.”

Wuthering Heights

 

WUTHERING HEIGHTS
March 6 (Friday)
Film screening — 7:30 p.m., Page Hall, 135 Western Avenue, Downtown Campus

Directed by William Wyler (United States, 1939, 104 minutes, b/w)
Starring Merle Oberon, Laurence Olivier, David Niven

This adaptation of Emily Brontë’s tempestuous romance—one of the most enduring classics of English literature—received eight Academy Award nominations, including one for “Best Picture” in a year considered by many critics to be the most competitive in American film history.

Shown in association with the March 10 appearance of award-winning fiction writer Caryl Phillips, who reimagines elements of Wuthering Heights in his new novel, The Lost Child (2015).
(See Visiting Writer Series Listing)


Yellow Sky
WILLIAM A. WELLMAN FILM FESTIVAL
YELLOW SKY
March 27 (Friday)
Film screening — 7:30 p.m., Page Hall, 135 Western Avenue, Downtown Campus

Directed by William A. Wellman, (United States, 1948, 98 minutes, b/w)
Starring Gregory Peck, Anne Baxter, Richard Widmark

In this highly original Western shot in Death Valley, a prospector and his tomboy daughter attempt to protect their secret gold mine when six fugitive bank robbers appear on the scene. Lamar Trotti won a Writers Guild award for a screenplay inspired by Shakespeare’s “The Tempest.”


Much Ado About Nothing
MUCH ADO ABOUT NOTHING
April 10 (Friday)
Film screening — 7:30 p.m., Page Hall, 135 Western Avenue, Downtown Campus


Directed by Kenneth Branagh (United Kingdom/United States, 1993, 111 minutes, color)
Starring Emma Thompson, Keanu Reeves, Kenneth Branagh

Nominated for the Palme d’Or at Cannes, this production of Shakespeare’s dark comedy was hailed by the New York Times as “triumphantly romantic, comic and, most surprising of all, emotionally alive.”

Shown in association with the upcoming April 13 appearance of Tina Packer, founder of Shakespeare & Company. (See Visiting Writers Series)


Nobody Knows NOBODY KNOWS [DARE MO SHIRANAI]
April 17 (Friday)
Film screening — 7:30 p.m., Page Hall, 135 Western Avenue, Downtown Campus

Directed by Hirokazu Koreeda (Japan, 2004, 141 minutes, color, in Japanese with English subtitles)
Starring Yûya Yagira, Ayu Kitaura, Hiei Kimura

Barely into his teens, performer Yûya Yagira won the Best Actor award at Cannes for his portrayal of a boy who raises his young siblings in a Tokyo apartment after their mother abandons them. Michael Wilmington of the Chicago Tribune called the film, “one of those special movies that can give us a new way of seeing.”


Wings WILLIAM A. WELLMAN FILM FESTIVAL
WINGS

April 24 (Friday)
Film screening — 7:30 p.m., Page Hall, 135 Western Avenue, Downtown Campus


Directed by William A. Wellman, (United States, 1927, 144 minutes, b/w, silent with live musical accompaniment by Mike Schiffer)
Starring Clara Bow, Charles “Buddy” Rogers, Richard Arlen

A former flying ace with the French Foreign Legion during World War I, director William Wellman used his familiarity with aviation to craft this silent film about two fighter pilots in love with the same woman. The first Oscar-winner for Best Picture, and the only silent to win an Oscar prior to THE ARTIST in 2011, the film dazzled contemporary audiences with its innovative flying footage and aerial combat scenes.


William Wellman, Jr.
Photo: Courtesty of
the author

 

WILLIAM A. WELLMAN FILM FESTIVAL
William Wellman, Jr., author and actor

May 1 (Friday)
Reading and discussion on the work of film director William Wellman — 7:30 p.m., Page Hall,
135 Western Avenue, Downtown Campus

William Wellman, Jr. is the author of Wild Bill Wellman: Hollywood Rebel (2015), a biography of his father, director William A. Wellman, a giant of the motion picture industry from the Silent Era to the 1950s. Wellman’s 82 films include history’s first Academy Award winner for Best Picture, WINGS (1927), as well as such iconic films as A STAR IS BORN (1937), THE OX-BOW INCIDENT (1943), and THE HIGH AND THE MIGHTY (1954). Drawing on his father’s unpublished letters, diaries, notes and unfinished autobiography, the new book offers the first full portrait of the man. A notable character actor in his own right, Wellman Jr. is also the author of The Man and His Wings (2006), about the making of his father’s silent masterpiece.


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CONTACT INFORMATION:
Science Library, SL 320, University at Albany, NY 12222 | Phone 518-442-5620, Fax 518-442-5621, email writers@albany.edu