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Staff Picks: Diva

July 21, 2017
9:15 pm
Roxie Theater

We are excited to present Adrianne's Staff Pick, the iconic 80's film DIVA, on glorious 35mm and on the 35th anniversary of the U.S. release of Jean-Jacques Beneix's debut feature. Young postman Jules (Frederic Andrei, "Venus Beauty Institute") makes himself a perfect opera bootleg tape, but he's been observed by another member of the audience. Later, a woman running from two thugs drops a second tape into his mailbag and he becomes entangled in plot that involves a prostitution ring, Taiwanese recording execs, a philosopher who dreams of stopping the waves and the opera star who believes music is fleeting and should not be recorded, Cynthia (Wilhelmenia Wiggins Fernandez), a true "Diva." Beneix's art direction is as eccentric and engaging as his characters. The film's design is very much a product of the postmodern 80s; it's a funky, imaginative pastiche of classical and modern influences, of high art and pop culture. There's a surrealistic quality to the way Beneix combines references to other films, other genres, other cultures, other art forms, other lifestyles. The film is full of unpredictable juxtapositions that combine old world elegance, modern minimalism, and contemporary whimsy. Gorodish's apartment is a cavernous modernistic warehouse with an old-fashioned clawfoot bathtub at one end, and he sits in it while smoking Gitanes like a medieval lord, his miniskirted underage companion roller-skating blithely around him. All that's missing is a pink flamingo. Dir. Jean-Jacques Beneix, 1981, France, 123 mins, 35mm in French with English subtitles FREE OR DISCOUNTED FOR MEMBERS

Roxie Theater

3117 16th St, San Francisco, CA
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