NYICFF 2008 - Fall Line-Up

Sep 16th 2008
NYICFF 2008 - FALL LINE-UP!!!
AZUR & ASMAR
SITA SINGS THE BLUES
KID FLIX MIX
PARTY MIX
DUCK SOUP
BABES IN TOYLAND

AZUR & ASMAR
France, Animation, Michel Ocelot, 2006/2008, 98 min
IN ENGLISH - FOR AGES 6 TO ADULT
THIS EVENT IS EXPECTED TO SELL OUT SO ADVANCE TICKETS ARE RECOMMENDED

Sat & Sun, Oct 18 & 19, 11am - IFC Center, 323 6th Ave (at West 3rd)
Sat, Nov 29, 11am, 2PM - Symphony Space, 2537 Broadway (at 95th)

NYICFF is thrilled to present the US premiere English language version of this stunning new animated adventure from acclaimed director and animator Michel Ocelot (Kirikou and the Sorceress). The poetic, fairytale-like story weaves together themes of family, culture, race and respect within a visual lanscape of uncomparable brillance and beauty.

"Magnificent!" "Entrancing!" - Variety

"Pure Magic!" - Hollywood Reporter

"Wondrous!" "Splendid!" - Time Out London

"A Visual Masterpiece!" - Empire

"Sheer Dazzlement!" - Financial Times

Azur and Asmar is the story of two boys raised as brothers. Blonde, blue-eyed, white skinned Azur and black-haired, brown-eyed, dark-skinned Asmar are lovingly cared for by Asmar's gentle mother, who tells them magical stories of her faraway homeland and of beautiful, imprisoned Fairy Djinn waiting to be set free. Time passes, and one day Azur's father, the master of the house, provokes a brutal separation. Azur is sent away to study, while Asmar and his mother are driven out, homeless and penniless. Years later, as a young adult, Azur remains haunted by memories of the sunny land of his nanny, and sets sail south across the high seas to find the country of his dreams. Meanwhile, back in her homeland, Azur's nanny has become a wealthy merchant and Asmar has grown into a dashing horseman. Reunited but now as adversaries, the two brothers set off on a dangerous quest to find and free the Fairy of the Djinns.

"Quite simply, it's a visual masterpiece that combines cut-outs with CGI and the mesmeric beauty of Islamic art to create a magical world, in which scarlet lions with blue claws and birds with rainbow wings stand between the blond Azur and Asmar, the estranged Arab friend of his childhood." - Empire

"Cinema whose every frame could be hung on an art gallery wall. The pictorial style has no peer or comparison in modern cinema... think of illuminated manuscripts, Quattrocentro art, Douanier Rousseau or Carl Faberge - or, if possible, all at once." - Financial Times

SITA SINGS THE BLUES
USA, Animation, Nina Paley, 2008, 82 min
IN ENGLISH - FOR AGES 9 TO ADULT

AUDIENCE Q&A WITH DIRECTOR NINA PALEY FOLLOWING BOTH SHOWS
THIS EVENT IS EXPECTED TO SELL OUT SO ADVANCE TICKETS ARE RECOMMENDED

Sat & Sun, Nov 8 & 9, 11am - IFC Center, 323 6th Ave (at West 3rd)

Tragedy, comedy and musical collide in this gloriously animated new film from Nina Paley, New York's own "One Woman Pixar" (Wired Magazine). Sita is a goddess separated from her beloved Lord and husband Rama. Nina is an animator whose husband moves to India, then dumps her by email. Three bickering shadow puppets with Indian accents act as comic narrators as these old and new stories are interwoven interwoven in a post-modern retelling of the ancient Indian epic Ramayana, animated in a dazzling Mix of traditional and collage animation styles, and backed by a soundtrack from legendary 1920's jazz singer Annette Hanshaw.

Sita Sings the Blues follows in the line of Triplets of Bellville, Spirited Away and Persepolis to exemplify animation as a "serious" art form. The panoply of monsters, gods, goddesses, warriors, sages, and winged eyeballs fill the screen with vivid color from start to finish, while the narrators' hilarious improvisational debates over the Rama legend join the filmmaker's own tragicomic story and Hanshaw's done-me-wrong tunes to layer a modern feminist commentary on the ancient tale. The result is a subtly subversive, visually stunning, highly original work that is as enjoyable for children as it is for adults. (A preview received raves from all ages at the NYICFF Members Screening in June.)


KID FLIX MIX
IN ENGLISH - FOR AGES 3 TO 8

Sat & Sun, Oct 25 & 26, 11am - Symphony Space, 2537 Broadway (at 95th)

Kid Flix Mix is a continually updated "Best of NYICFF" assortment of animated, musical and experimental shorts for ages 3-8. The program features audience and jury favorites cherry-picked from the past ten years of the festival, including works from Mexico, Germany, UK, France, US and Canada.


NYICFF PARTY MIX
FOR AGES 8 TO ADULT

Sat & Sun, Oct 25 & 26, 1pm - Symphony Space, 2537 Broadway (at 95th)

Party Mix is a continually updated "Best of NYICFF" assortment of animated, live action, experimental, and musical shorts for ages 8 and older. The program features audience and jury favorites cherry-picked from the past ten years of the festival, including works from South Korea, Japan, Russia, Germany, and more.


DUCK SOUP
SPECIAL 75TH ANNIVERSARY SCREENING
USA, Leo McCarey, 1933, 68 min
FOR AGES 6 TO ADULT

Sat, Dec 20 at 1pm & Sun, Dec 21 at 11am - Symphony Space, 2537 Broadway (at 95th)

One of the funniest films of all times (Ranked #5 on the American Film Institute's Top 100 Comedies), this slice of anarchic irreverence from the Marx Bros. is a rollercoaster collision of slapstick, lightning-paced verbal banter, and silly songs. Groucho plays the cigar- chomping Rufus T. Firefly, president of the tiny nation of Freedonia and all-around scoundrel. With his country on the verge of bankruptcy, Firefly intends to salvage the economy by wooing the wealthy Mrs. Teasdale, but instead accidentally starts a war with the neighboring country Sylvania! Non-stop, wall-to-wall hilarity.

Excerpt from Roger Ebert review: How much more anarchic the Marx Brothers must have seemed in their time than we can understand today... they were as surrealist as Dali, as shocking as Stravinsky, as verbally outrageous as Gertrude Stein, as alienated as Kafka. Because they worked the genres of slapstick and screwball, they did not get the same kind of attention, but their effect on the popular mind was probably more influential. "As an absurdist essay on politics and warfare," wrote the British critic Patrick McCray," Duck Soup can stand alongside (or even above) the works of Beckett and Ionesco."


BABES IN TOYLAND
USA, Gus Meins, 1934, 77 min
FOR ALL AGES

Sat, Dec 20 at 11am & Sun, Dec 21 at 1pm - Symphony Space, 2537 Broadway (at 95th)

This film is also known under its alternate title, March of the Wooden Soldiers.

Celebrate the season with this perennial holiday classic from the legendary comic duo Laurel and Hardy, who play two low-level toymakers in Toyland, a surreal fairy tale universe populated by slightly off-kilter Mother Goose characters. The pair live a comfortable life in a shoe, helping to make toys for Santa's big annual orders, until their hilarious incompetence gets them fired. Towering wooden soldiers, monsters from Bogeyland, a live monkey in a rat costume rip-off of Mickey Mouse, and a dastardly pignapping make this film a memorably bizarre take on the popular Victor Herbert operetta, packed full of slapstick gags by comedy guru Hal Roach. "Every youngster in New York ought to find a ticket for Babes in Toyland in his Christmas stocking," noted the original 1934 review in the New York Times. "If he is a good boy he should be permitted to see it twice."

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