It is 70 years since Michael Curtiz’s wartime romance Casablanca (10th – 16th) starring Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman was first released and their characters Rick and Ilsa unexpectedly became one of the most iconic screen partnerships of film history. The dialogue is snappy, the performances are mesmerising and the soundtrack lingers long after the movie ends. Whether you’re bringing a special someone or just enjoying a night of romantic indulgence with a friend Casablanca is a fabulous way to mark Valentine’s Day.
The re-release of L’Atalante (3rd– 9th Feb) is rare chance to see the masterpiece of French director Jean Vigo’s tragically short career. Handsome Jean Dasté runs up and down the Seine in the eponymous L’Atalante barge with his restless wife Dita Parlo. Her desire to revel the bright lights of Paris leads to a separation that both quickly regret, but that is not easily undone. Vigo enters the very psyche of these two lovers searching to be reunited, combining poetic speculation and naturalistic drama to vivid and timeless effect.
Otto Preminger’s Laura (from Feb 24th) provides one of the 1940s most sophisticated thrillers with Gene Tierney in flashbacks as the devastatingly lovely femme fatale and Dana Andrews as the investigating cop who investigates her murder. This mystery classic has now been beautifully restored.
Back by popular demand are two of Woody Allen’s finest films Zelig (17th-19th Feb) and Hannah and her Sisters (24th-26th Feb). Zelig sees Allen as a 1930s human chameleon blending in to archive footage (quite an achievement for the pre-digital age) and supplying a host of one-liners along the way. Hannah and her Sisters is vintage Allen, an engrossing warm-hearted saga of wives, lovers and friends whose social interaction never quite allows a release of their true feelings delivered by a superb ensemble case including Oscar-winning turns from Michael Caine and Diane Wiest.
Martin Scorsese has delivered some expert music documentaries on Dylan, The Rolling Stones and George Harrison in recent years so it is a pleasure to be able to revisit The Last Waltz (10th-12th Feb), his pioneering musical portrait of The Band. Robbie Robertson and cohorts started as Bob Dylan’s backing before becoming legends in their own right. Guest contributions from special guests include Neil Young, Joni Mitchell, Eric Clapton, Muddy Waters and Van Morrison – an unmissable concert from a musical golden age.
February Repertory Season Schedule
The Last Waltz
Hannah and her Sisters 24th-26th Feb 13.10