Me and My Brother. 1965–68. USA. Directed by Robert Frank. © The Andrea Frank Foundation
The Festival Opens with the New York Premiere of Wilmington 10 – USA 10,000, with Director Haile Gerima and Reverend Dr. Benjamin F. Chavis Jr. in Conversation
To Save and Project: The 18th MoMA International Festival of Film Preservation
January 13–February 5, 2022
The Roy and Niuta Titus Theaters
Running from January 13 to February 5, 2022, To Save and Project: The 18th MoMA International Festival of Film Preservation includes more than 60 newly preserved features and shorts from 19 countries, many having world or North American premieres and presented in original versions not seen since their initial theatrical releases. Recent MoMA restorations in this year’s festival include the world premieres of Buster Keaton and Donald Crisp’s The Navigator (1924), restored by MoMA and Lobster Films with newly reconstructed tinting and an original score by Antonio Coppola; Beth B. and Scott B.’s The Offenders (1980); and Liza Béar’s Force of Circumstance (1990); and the North American premiere restoration of the full-length version of Robert Frank’s Me and My Brother (1965–68). This year’s edition of To Save and Project is organized by Joshua Siegel, Curator, Department of Film, The Museum of Modern Art, and Cynthia Rowell, independent consultant.
To Save and Project is framed by two major rediscoveries. The festival opens on January 13 with the New York premiere restoration of Haile Gerima’s documentary Wilmington 10 – USA 10,000 (1979), about the notorious 1972 trial and nearly decade-long imprisonment of nine Black men and one white woman who were wrongfully convicted in a North Carolina State Court of arson and conspiracy. The screening will conclude with a discussion between Haile Gerima and Reverend Dr. Benjamin F. Chavis Jr., who led a boycott in Wilmington after the closure of a Black high school and who received the severest sentence of the so-called Wilmington 10. To Save and Project concludes with the North American premiere theatrical run (February 4–10) of Valerio Zurlini’s La prima notte di quiete (Indian Summer) (1972)— an austere, tragic romance starring Alain Delon as a failed poet—in its original, uncut Italian version.
To Save and Project’s 2021 world premiere restoration highlights also include the Clara Bow rediscovery The Primrose Path (1925), unseen in nearly a century; one of the first student films ever made, The Maid of McMillan (1916), a whimsical romance shot by law students from Washington University in St. Louis; and Judit Elek’s The Lady from Constantinople (1969). Other restorations presented for the first time in North America in their original full-length versions are Erich von Stroheim’s Blind Husbands (1919) and Walter Saxer’s long-forgotten documentary collaboration with the Peruvian Nobel laureate Mario Vargas Llosa, Sepa, Nuestro Señor de los Milagros (1987). Also featured in North American premiere restorations are Hiroshi Inagaki’s The Rickshaw Man (1943); Julian Duvivier’s The Mystery of the Eiffel Tower (1927) and The Divine Voyage (1929); Jean Renoir’s The Lower Depths (1936), adapted from the Maxim Gorky play; Mitchell Leisen’s Frenchman’s Creek (1944); Peter Lorre’s The Lost One (1951), accompanied by Harun Farocki’s film essay Peter Lorre: The Double Face (1984); James Blue’s The Olive Trees of Justice (1962); Carol Reed’s blockbuster musical Oliver! (1968); Orson Welles’s F for Fake (1973); and South Korean genre filmmaker Lee Man-hee’s The Road to Sampo (1975).
Additional festival highlights include:
• Spotlight on 125 Years of Black Cinema. This year’s edition of To Save and Project includes films spanning 125 years of Black cinema, from the world premieres of the landmark Something Good—Negro Kiss (1898) in a newly discovered alternate version and the 1902 Ringling Bros. Circus Parade, a rare glimpse of the African American middle class—newly elected to the National Film Registry—to a special Modern Mondays evening with Christopher Harris on January 24, in which the filmmaker presents his newly restored film still/here (2000). Also featured are the world premiere of Djibril Diop Mambéty’s Badou Boy (Senegal, 1970), Souleymane Cissé’s The Young Girl (Mali, 1975), the world premiere of Camille Billops and James Hatch’s Suzanne Suzanne (1982), and the New York premiere of Bill Duke’s The Killing Floor (1984). The festival also premieres outtakes from James Baldwin: From Another Place (1973) and two musical shorts from the 1930s starring Ina Ray Hutton.
• Women Independents. The festival offers a renewed appreciation of many female filmmakers from around the world, including Kinuyo Tanaka (The Eternal Breasts, 1955), Sara Gómez (One Way or Another, 1977), Penny Allen (Property, 1979), Claudia von Alemann (Blind Spot, 1980), and Naomi Uman (Love of 3 Oranges, 1993), as well as Beth B., Liza Béar, Camille Billops, Judit Elek, Marceline Loridan Ivens, Caroline Mouris, and Franciszka Themerson.
• Previously banned films. This year’s lineup includes several banned or severely censored and recut films that have been reconstructed as closely as possible to their original versions. Among these is a program of Nazi-banned films from Poland and Germany made between 1931 and 1933, including the major rediscovery of Stefan and Franciszka Themerson’s antifascist avant-garde Europa (1931); Willy Zielke’s Unemployed: The Destiny of Millions (1933) in its original version; and Slatan Dudow’s Kuhle Wampe, or Who Owns the World? (1932), a collaboration with Bertolt Brecht. Films in the festival that have not been seen in their uncensored versions for more than 50 years are the Armenian master Sergei Parajanov’s Kiev Frescoes (1966), banned by the Soviet authorities; Marceline Loridan-Ivens and Jean Pierre Sergent’s Algeria Year Zero (1962), banned both in Algeria and France; and Ebrahim Golestan’s The Crown Jewels of Iran (1965), shown privately to the Shah and banned in Iran thereafter.
• Illustrated lectures. The festival includes four illustrated lectures on the art, craft, and technology of cinema. Not seen in its original form in nearly 60 years and having its world premiere, the roadshow version of MGM’s Cinerama spectacular The Wonderful World of the Brothers Grimm (1962) has been reconstructed for Warner Bros. and Cinerama Inc. by restorationists David Strohmaier and Tom H. March, who, together with historian Randy Gitsch, present the film and a short documentary on its restoration on January 23. Also on January 23, Orphans at MoMA: Without Speaking, the annual collaboration with the NYU Orphan Film Symposium, features the world premiere restorations of Hollis Frampton’s Public Domain (1972) and Slava Tsukerman’s I Believe in Spring (1962), introduced by Tsukerman, who later directed the cult classic Liquid Sky; and the animators Caroline and Frank Mouris premiering their Oscar winning Frank Film (1973) and other celebrated shorts. On January 30, MoMA hosts the world premiere restoration of William Nigh’s The Fire Brigade (1926) with its original two-color Technicolor and Handschiegl spot coloring sequences, introduced by Heather Linville, Motion Picture Laboratory Supervisor of the Library of Congress. Also on January 30, Steve Massa and Ben Model present Edward Everett Horton, Silent Comedian, a program of four newly rediscovered silent films starring the Hollywood character actor, including the world premiere restoration of Horse Shy (1928).
Please see the accompanying screening schedule for full program details: Full Film Schedule and Descriptions
Special thanks to Olivia Priedite.
Film at MoMA is made possible by CHANEL.
Additional support is provided by the Annual Film Fund. Leadership support for the Annual Film Fund is provided by Debra and Leon D. Black and by Steven Tisch, with major contributions from The Contemporary Arts Council of The Museum of Modern Art, Jo Carole and Ronald S. Lauder, MoMA’s Wallis Annenberg Fund for Innovation in Contemporary Art through the Annenberg Foundation, the Association of Independent Commercial Producers (AICP), The Junior Associates of The Museum of Modern Art, the Samuel I. Newhouse Foundation, Karen and Gary Winnick, and The Brown Foundation, Inc., of Houston.