Dean Otto currently serves as the Curator of Film. To learn more about Dean and the Speed Cinema, read the full press release here. Photo by Rafael Gamo.


January 28 & 29

With his first film in seven years, legendary director Jerzy Skolimowski (Deep End, Moonlighting) directs one of his most free and visually inventive films yet, following the travels of a nomadic gray donkey named EO.

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Saint Omer

January 27, 28, & 29

Young novelist Rama travels to Saint Omer to attend the trial of Laurence Coly, a young Senegalese immigrant accused of killing her 15-month-old daughter by abandoning her to the rising tide on a beach in northern France. As the trial continues, the words of the accused and witness testimonies will shake Rama’s convictions and call into question our own judgment.

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I’ve Heard the Mermaids Singing

February 1

In Patricia Rozema’s fanciful character study, aspiring photographer Polly (comedian Sheila McCarthy) lands a job at a Toronto art gallery run by Gabrielle (Paule Baillargeon), who is also a painter. Polly is impressed with Gabrielle’s paintings, but as Polly gets to know her lover Mary (Ann-Marie MacDonald) and becomes entangled in their lives, she realizes Gabrielle isn’t exactly who she appears to be.

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Mansfield Park

February 2

Patricia Rozema’s 1999 adaptation of Mansfield Park was the last of the Austen film wave of the 1990s, and the one that deviated the most from earlier adaptation practice as well as from the novel. Rozema rewrote the character of Fanny to resemble Austen herself, and emphasized the social critique of slavery, class, and gender that is present in the text. Rozema’s retelling of Austen’s book anticipates more recent adaptation experiments such as Greta Gerwig’s Little Women (2019) and Bruce Miller’s successful Hulu series The Handmaid’s Tale.

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Space is the Place

February 2

Avant-jazz mystic Sun Ra brought his pioneering Afrofuturist vision to the screen with this film version of his concept album. It’s a wild, kaleidoscopic whirl of science fiction, sharp social commentary, and thrilling concert performance, in which the pharaonic Ra and his Arkestra lead an intergalactic movement to resettle the Black race on their utopian space colony.

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Rules of the Game (La règle du jeu)

February 3 & 4

Considered one of the greatest films ever made, The Rules of the Game (La règle du jeu), by Jean Renoir, is a scathing critique of corrupt French society cloaked in a comedy of manners in which a weekend at a marquis’ country château bares some ugly truths about a group of haut bourgeois acquaintances.

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Harlan Jacobson’s Talk Cinema: Let It Be Morning

February 4

Let It Be Morning tells the story of Sami (Alex Bakri) a Palestinian-born Israeli citizen living in Jerusalem who receives an invitation to his brother’s wedding forcing him to return to the Arab village where he grew up. After the wedding finishes, with no explanation, Sami’s hometown is put under a military blockade lockdown by Israeli soldiers. When chaos erupts overnight amongst the villagers stuck behind the wall due to the blockade, Sami is cut off from the outside world and trapped in an unexpected situation.

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The Draughtsman’s Contract

February 4 & 5

In a richly exaggerated 17th-century England, Peter Greenaway’s witty, stylized, erotic country house murder mystery catapulted him to the forefront of international art cinema. The film has been newly remastered in 4K by the British Film Institute’s National Archive.

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No Bears (Khers Nist)

February 10, 11, & 12

In No Bears, as in many of his recent titles, Jafar Panahi plays a fictionalized version of himself, in this case, relocated to a rural border town to remotely direct a new film in nearby Turkey – the story of which comes to sharply mirror disturbing events that begin to occur around him.

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Malni–Towards the Ocean, Towards the Shore

February 12

Sky Hopinka’s poetic debut feature, Malni (pronounced moth-nee), follows Sweetwater Sahme and Jordan Mercier as they wander through their surrounding nature in the Pacific Northwest, contemplating their contrasting viewpoints on the afterlife, rebirth, and the place in between. Spoken mostly in the Chinuk Wawa language, their stories take a departure from the Chinookan people’s circular origin-of-death myth, probing questions about humanity’s place both on earth and in other worlds.

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Farewell, Mr Haffmann (Adieu Monsieur Haffmann)

February 19

In occupied Paris during 1941, all members of the Jewish community are instructed to come forward and identify themselves to authorities. Dedicated jeweler Joseph Haffmann (Auteuil), fearing the worst, arranges for his family to flee the city and offers his employee François Mercier (Gilles Lellouche) the chance to take over his store until the conflict subsides. But his own attempts to escape are thwarted, and Haffmann is forced to seek his assistant's protection.

Co-presented with the Louisville Jewish Film Festival.

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February 26

In the new short documentary Tidal, filmmaker Katrina Lillian Sorrentino turns the camera on herself to disclose the intimate details of a psychologically and emotionally abusive relationship. Through the support of others who have experienced narcissistic abuse, Sorrentino models that healing and resilience is possible.

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