TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD
1962, Universal, 129 min, USA, Dir: Robert Mulligan

Hollywood pro Robert Mulligan pulls off the rarest of achievements with this adaptation of Harper Lee’s classic novel: He brings a great book to the screen and improves upon it. Gregory Peck is superb as a small-town lawyer who defends a black man accused of rape. But what distinguishes the film is director Mulligan's deft use of subjective camerawork to approximate the point of view of the children who struggle to understand the case. Peck, screenwriter Horton Foote and a team of art directors that included the legendary Henry Bumstead deservedly won Oscars for their work on this timeless classic. Robert Duvall makes his feature debut as Boo Radley.


LA DOLCE VITA
1960, Paramount, 185 min, Italy, Dir: Federico Fellini

Director Federico Fellini feels his way from the neo-realist past to the illusory future in this incredible emotional travelogue of the soul of modern Rome. How better to open the free-wheeling 1960s than with this alternately funny, feral, sweet and seductive meditation on what is truly meaningful (if anything) for the dusk-to-dawn Italian jet set? Marcello Mastroianni was catapulted into superstar status as the sensitive tabloid reporter juggling the affections of several women (voluptuous movie star Anita Ekberg, icy mistress Anouk Aimee and neurotic girlfriend Magali Noel) while making the rounds of the spirit-destroying nightlife of the Via Veneto. Mastroianni’s scene with Ekberg in the Trevi Fountain at dawn remains one of the most timeless, memorable images ever to emerge from world cinema. "I feel that decadence is indispensable to rebirth." - Fellini. In Italian with English subtitles.


EMPEROR OF THE NORTH POLE
1973, 20th Century Fox, 118 min, Dir: Robert Aldrich

Ernest Borgnine reunites with his "Dirty Dozen" co-star Lee Marvin and director Robert Aldrich for this Depression-era drama. Borgnine is a sadistic railroad conductor determined to keep hobos off of his train; Marvin is an outcast who strives to become a legend by battling and besting Borgnine. Highlighted by a young Keith Carradine as the rascal Cigaret, and a taut script by Christopher Knopf (A COLD NIGHT’S DEATH).


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