The ‘Books into Films Series’ and More at Amherst Cinema
Hayao Miyazaki Films, Anna Karenina, To Kill a Mockingbird, Casablanca, and More
Published: Thursday, January 31, 2013
Updated: Thursday, January 31, 2013 20:01
In the absence of Pleasant Street Theater, Amherst Cinema is the closest theater screening films other than modern, mainstream releases. While during the week the cinema does offer films like Ben Affleck’s Argo, each weekend ushers in more unusual films, like The Magistrate, director Timothy Sheader’s version of Arthur Wing Pinero’s Victorian farce.
This March, the theater will celebrate the work of Japanese director, screenwriter and manga artist Hayao Miyazaki with their Miyazaki festival, during which they will screen not only his more popular films, such as Spirited Away and Howl’s Moving Castle, but rarer films, such as Castle in the Sky and Princess Mononoke, which broke the Japanese box office record but experienced only glancing success in the United States. Amherst Cinema will also show Miyazaki’s debut film, Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind. My Neighbor Totoro, which Roger Ebert named a children’s classic, will also be shown.
For the rest of the semester, Amherst Cinema’s Books into Films series will celebrate film adaptations of celebrated literature with Tuesday night 7 p.m. screenings. The first film in the series, Joe Wright’s interpretation of Tolstoy’s Anna Karenina, which stars Kiera Knightley, enjoyed a longer run at Amherst Cinema due to its recent 2012 release. Robert Mulligan’s 1962 version of Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird, which won Gregory Peck an Oscar for his performance as lawyer Atticus Finch, is the next film in the series and will be screened March 19. On April 23, Stephen King’s horror novel The Shining comes to life under the direction of Stanley Kubrick in his 1980 rendition of the novel, which features Jack Nicholson in the iconic role of author Jack Torrance. The series closes with The Tin Drum, a 1979 film directed by Volker Schlondorff and based on Gunter Grass’ 1959 novel, the first in his Danzig Trilogy. The Tin Drum will be screened May 14.
Other special events at the Amhest Cinema include live broadcasts of new plays from London’s National Theatre. Writer Alan Bennett’s play People starring Frances de La Tour will be shown on March 24 and April 13. James Graham’s play This House – about the “practical realities” of politics – will be shown May 16 and June 1. Tickets to live broadcasts of plays are more expensive than tickets to other showings; patrons can expect to pay around $25.
Though Amherst Cinema frequently screens older films, the theater still manages to keep up with the times. For instance, last Monday at noon, the cinema showed the 2013 Presidential Inauguration and this Friday, Feb. 1, the theater will screen the candidates for Oscar-nominated best short film and best short animated film prior to the Oscar awards ceremony on Feb. 24. The theater will also observe Valentine’s Day this year with a 7 p.m. screening of Casablanca that is likely to draw in many celebrating couples.
Screening times, ticket prices and further details on screenings and events at Amherst Cinema can be found on their website at amherstcinema.org.