A monument to circus showman P.T. Barnum stands in Reid Davenport’s hometown of Bethel, Connecticut. “He got a pedestal,” says the director of I DIDN’T SEE YOU THERE, the new documentary that premiered at the 65th SFFILM Festival, while the disabled filmmaker’s perspective is from the sidewalk. The film, a meditative and personal feature that invites the viewer to see the world through his eyes—and at his level– often refers to the corrosive legacy of Barnum’s freak shows and how society relates to those who are different.
In the past I have written, once or twice, thinking it was something of a joke, that if you wanted to see a movie beautifully projected on huge big screens with a full attentive audience who were all watching the BIG screen instead of their little screens, you had to go to a film festival.
Sir Ian McKellen’s 2015 Tribute; Photo by Drew Altizer Photography
And now, after nearly three years of not going to movies, whether in theaters or at festivals, and becoming increasingly used to – but not happy about — seeing movies via streaming services at home, I find that my little joke rings increasingly true.
Cinema junkies forgive iconic documentary filmmaker Frederick Wiseman for the length of some of his works that venture deep into American institutions; his most recent City Hall covering the government of Boston clocked in at four and a half hours. We absolve him because he is so good at taking us inside worlds that we don’t know, as his camera disappears and we learn so much by listening and observing, happy to have made the journey.
We love Fellini and we love trailers that tease us to want to see the full features.
In March 2020 the Berkeley Art Museum/Pacific Film Archive was starting an extensive Fellini 100 series when Covid shut the Museum down. But the Fellini Celebration is back, playing through May 14, 2022.
We are pleased to present a collection of trailers, interviews and appreciations of Federico Fellini in honor of his belated 100th birthday.
This year the 44th Mill Valley Film Festival has created a true hybrid with a full schedule of movies showing at the Rafael in San Rafael, Sequoia in Mill Valley and BAMPFA in Berkeley through Sunday, October 17.
40 of the programs will be streaming in your home via several platforms.