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Spring 2016

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Beneath the Helmet: From High School to the Home Front

Wednesday, January 13
Presented by: Orit Yeret, Senior Lecturer, Program in Jewish Studies.
Israel/USA (2014) Dir: Wayne Kopping.

A coming-of-age story that follows five Israeli high school graduates who are drafted into the Israeli army. At the age of 18, away from theirhomes, they undergo a demanding, journey, revealing the core of who they are andwho they want to be. English and Hebrew with English subtitles. 110 minutes. DVD.

Presented in cooperation with the Program in Jewish Studies and Vanderbilt Hillel.

Doomsday Book
Wednesday, January 20
Presented by: Haerin Shin, Assistant Professor of English, Film Studies, and Asian Studies.
South Korea (2012) Dirs: Kim Jee-woon, Yim Pil-sung.

Three short films present different events leading up to The Destruction of Humanity: a zombie epidemic; a world where advanced machines emulate human intellect and spirituality; and a family stranded amidst the ruins after a meteor obliterates civilization. It won the top prize at the 2012 Fantasia Festival for its intelligence and originality. Korean with English subtitles. 115 minutes. Blu-ray. Presented in collaboration with Cinema & Media Arts, Asian Studies, and English


Pandora’s Promise
Monday, January 25
Presented by: Steve Krahn, Professor of the Practice of Nuclear Environmental Engineering; with Bethany Burkhardt, Research Engineer.
USA/UK (2013) Dir: Robert Stone.

From Chernobyl to Fukushima, Pandora’s Promise provides a modern perspective on issues associated with nuclear power.Explores the journey of former antinuclear activists and weaves in illuminating footage from all over the world. Rated PG. 87 minutes. DVD. Presented in collaboration with the Vanderbilt student chapter of the American Nuclear Society.

The Gleaners and I
Wednesday, January 27
Presented by: Carolyn Taratko and J’Nese Williams, EOS Project Fellows.
France (2000) Dir: Agnès Varda.

Pioneer of New Wave cinema,Varda creates an intimate portrait of people who gather left-over things – crops left after harvest, abandoned household goods, discarded food. Her study of gleaners, both urban andrural, is an exploration of waste, want, and changing Frenchvalues. French with English subtitles. Unrated. 82 minutes.DVD. Presented in collaboration with the EOS project.

Living Downstream
Tuesday February 2
Presented by: Carwil Bjork-James, Assistant Professor of Anthropology.
Argentina/USA (2010) Dir: Chanda Chevannes.
Biologist Sandra Steingraber defines “understanding the public story of cancer” as her life’s work. She calls public attention to the role of environmental pollutants in causing cancer even as she confronts her own diagnosis with the disease in a compelling environmental documentary that interrelates the personal, the scientific, and the political. English. Unrated. 85 minutes. DVD. Presented in collaboration with the EOS Project

M—A City Looks for a Murderer
(Part of the Fritz Lang series)
Wednesday, February 3
Presented by: Lutz Koepnick, Gertrude Conaway Vanderbilt Professor of German, Cinema and Media Arts.
Germany (1931) Dir: Fritz Lang.

The story of a serial killer in Weimar-era Germany embodies the social criticism and terror of the time immediately before Nazi rule. German, with English subtitles. Unrated. 111 minutes. Blu-Ray. Presented in collaboration with the Department of Germanic & Slavic Languages.

Cesar’s Last Fast
Monday, February 8
Presented by: William Luis, Gertrude Conway Vanderbilt Professor of Spanish and Director of the Latino and Latina Studies Program.
USA (2014) Dir: Richard Ray Perez.

Depicting the complicated history of Cesar Chavez and the United Farm Workers, the film is the first to grapple with his mixed legacy revealing both his creativity and his desire for total control. Said to bethe most complex portrayal of Chavez ever captured on film. English. Unrated. 93 Minutes. Blu-ray. Presented in collaboration with the Latino and Latina Studies Program.

Just Eat It
Tuesday, February 9
Presented by: Beth A. Conklin, Associate Professor and Chair, Department of Anthropology; and Linda Breggin, Adjunct Professor of Law, Senior Attorney for the Environmental Law Institute, and NRDC Nashville Food Waste Initiative Coordinator.
Canada (2014) Dir: Grant Baldwin.

Filmmakers and food lovers Jen and Grant dive into the issue of food waste by pledging to live six months only on foods that would otherwise be thrown away. The duo reveals the core of this seemingly insignificant issue that is having devastating consequences around the globe. English. Unrated.75 minutes. Blu-ray. Presented in collaboration with Students Promoting Environmental Awareness and Responsibility (SPEAR)

(Part of the Fritz Lang series)
Wednesday, February 10
Presented by: Lutz Koepnick, Gurtrude Conway Vanderbilt Professor of German, Cinema and Media Arts; with Cynthia Porter, Doctoral Student in German.
USA (1936) Dir: Fritz Lang.

Lang’s first film made in the United States, follows the story of a man who narrowly escapes a lynch mob after being falsely accused of a crime and the revenge he seeks thereafter. Amidst the brewing war tensions raging in Europe during the time of the release of this film,Lang uses the theme of mob mentality to criticize nationalistic group-think. English. No rating. 92 minutes. DVD. Presented in collaboration with the Department of Germanic & Slavic Languages.

Hannah Arendt
Tuesday, February 16
Presented by: Carwil Bjork-James, Assistant Professor of Anthropology.
Germany (2013) Dir: Margarethe von Trotta.

A brilliant, award-winning biopic of the influential German-Jewish philosopher and political theorist. Arendt’s reporting on the 1961 trial of ex-Nazi Adolf Eichmann in The New Yorker introduced her now-famous concept “the banality of evil.” Using footage from the Eichmann trial and weaving a narrative that spans three countries, von Trotta turns the often-invisible passion for thought into immersive, dramatic cinema.English and German with English subtitles. Unrated. 113 minutes. Blu-ray. Presented in collaboration with the Anthropology department.

Hangmen Also Die!
(Part of the Fritz Lang series)
Wednesday, February 17
Presented by: James McFarland, Assistant Professor of German, Cinema and Media Arts; with Zachary Feldman, doctoral student in German.
USA (1943) Dir: Fritz Lang.

This film noir drama relied on Bertolt Brecht’s only Hollywood screenplay. Based on the historical assassination of the number two man in Hitler’s SS and prominent architect of the Holocaust, Reinhard Heydrich, Lang explores the possibilities of resisting even the most brutal characters in history. English. No rating. 134 minutes. Blu-ray. Presented in collaboration with the Department of Germanic & Slavic Languages

Cameraperson (A Nashville Premiere)
Thursday, February 18
Presented by: Kirsten Johnson, Visiting Director & Cinematographer.
USA (2016). Dir: Kirsten Johnson.

Cinematographer Kirsten Johnson reaches into her vast trove of footage she has shot over decades. What emerges is a bold memoir and a revelatory interrogation of the power of the camera.Johnson is the cinematographer on some of the most important documentaries including Citizenfour and The Invisible War. Cameraperson comes to ILENS fresh from its debut at Sundance’s “New Frontiers.” English. Unrated. Presented in collaboration with Cinema & Media Arts and the Curb Center.

License to Operate
Tuesday, February 23
Presented by: Victor Anderson, Oberlin Theological School Chair, Professor of Ethics and Society; and Dale P. Andrews, Distinguished Professor of Homiletics and Social Justice.
USA (2015) Dir: James Lipetzky.

There is a growing distrust between members of the community and those who are meant to protect it. In Los Angeles, a group of former gang members have joined forces with community leaders and law enforcement on a mission to break the cycle of violence that they were once a part of creating. It is about how a few can change the direction of an entire city. English. 103 minutes. Unrated. Blu-Ray. Presented in collaboration with the Graduate Department of Religion.

The Whistleblower
Wednesday, February 24
Presented by: Students Against Modern Slavery.
Canada/Germany/USA (2010) Dir: Larysa Kondracki.

This ripped-from-the-headlines thriller was inspired by actual events involving police officer Kathryn Bolkovac. In 1999,she discovered a sex trafficking ring facilitated by private-contractor employer while serving as a United Nations Peacekeeper in post-war Bosnia and Herzegovina and struggled to break up the ring. English. 112 minutes. Rated R. Blu-ray.

Tuesday, March 1
Presented by: Kathrine Drotos Cuthbert, Program Coordinator, Wellness Programs & Alcohol Education; with Andy Finch, Professor of the Practice of Human and Organizational Development; and Chance Allen, Instructor in Nursing.
United Kingdom (2015) Dir: Asif Kapadia.

This moving documentary depicts the life, career, and premature death of British singer/songwriter Amy Winehouse, chronicling her visible descent into troubled relationships, self-harm, eating disorders, and addiction, through unseen archival footage, personal testimonials, and unheard tracks. Post-screening panelof students and specialists in the field of addiction will address becoming effectiveallies for each other. English. 128 minutes. Rated R. Blu-ray. Presented in collaboration with the McGill Project.

A Borrowed Identity
Tuesday March 15
Presented by: Allison Schachter, Associate Professor of Jewish Studies.
Israel/Germany/France (2014) Dir: Eran Riklis.

A gifted Palestinian-Israeli boy attends a prestigious Jewish boarding school, where he struggles with issues of language, culture, and identity. What begins as a realistic and compelling retelling of Romeo and Juliet becomes a fascinating criticism of identity, religion, and politics. Arabic, Hebrew, German with English Subtitles,English. 104 minutes. Blu-ray. Unrated. Presented in collaboration with the Jewish Studies Program.

Wednesday, March 16
Presented by Hasina Mohyuddin, Ph.D. candidate in Community Research and Action;with Farishtay Yamin, A&S ‘17.
Saudi Arabia/Germany (2012) Dir: Haifaa al-Mansour.

An enterprising Saudi girl enters a Koran recitation competition at her school as a way to raise money to buy the green bicycle that has captured her interest. The first feature-length film made by a femaleSaudi director. Arabic with English subtitles. PG. 98 minutes. Blu-ray. Presented in collaboration with the Margaret Cuninggim Women’s Center.

Part of the film series Revolution & Realism, based on the exhibition The Power of Pictures: Early Soviet Photography and Film, on view at the Frist Center for the Visual Arts through July 4, 2016

The Man with the Movie Camera
Thursday, March 17
Presented by: Jason Strudler, Mellon Assistant Professor of Russian.
USSR (1929) Dir: Dziga Vertov.
In this experimental documentary film, Vertov offers an avant-garde view of urban life within the Soviet Union. Disregarding narrative, character,and traditional cinematic storytelling, he instead showcases his cutting-edge techniques in what has been described as a feature-length montage. In 2014 Sight & Sound named it the best documentary of all time. Silent with English metatitles.No rating. 68 minutes. Blu-ray. Presented in collaboration with the Department of Germanic and Slavic Languages, the Frist Center for Visual Arts, The Belcourt Theatre, and Third Man Records.

Ghost Writer
Friday, March 18
Presented by: Scott Juengel, Director, Cinema & Media Arts and Senior Lecturer in English; with Thomas McGrath, A&S ‘16.
UK/France/Germany (2010) Dir: Roman Polanski.


One of Polanski’s most cynical films follows an author hired to complete the autobiography of a former British Prime Minister (a thinly disguised Tony Blair) after the mysterious death of the previous ghostwriter. In addition to being a thrilling mystery where everyone seems to be a part of the conspiracy, the film is also a complex look at the relationship between truth and history, as well as a personal reflection on Polanski’s own status as a controversial

public figure. English. PG-13. 128 minutes.  Presented in collaboration with Cinema & Media Arts.

Part of the film series Revolution & Realism, based on the exhibition The Power of Pictures: Early Soviet Photography and Film, on view at the Frist Center for the Visual Arts through July 4, 2016

Aelita: Queen of Mars
Tuesday, March 22
Presented by: Jason Strudler, Mellon Assistant Professor of Russian.
USSR (1924) Dir: Yakov Alexandrovich Protazanov.

Described as one of the first science-fiction films, Aelita chronicles an adventurer’s journey to Mars where he leads an uprising alongside a beautiful and seductive queen. Showcases spectacular sets and costumes influenced by the Russian Constructivist movement. Silent with English meta-titles. No rating. 111 minutes.Blu-ray.  Presented in collaboration with the Department of Germanic and Slavic Languages, the Frist Center for Visual Arts, The Belcourt Theatre, and Third Man Record

Wednesday, March 23
Presented by: Vanessa Beasley, Dean of the Martha River Ingram Commons and Associate Professor of Communications; and Mona Frederick, Executive Director of the Robert Penn Warren Center for the Humanities.
USA (2014) Dir: Ava DuVernay.

Selma chronicles the tumultuous three-month period in 1965, when Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. led a dangerous campaign to secure equal voting rights in the face of violent opposition. The epic march from Selma to Montgomery culminated in the Voting Rights Act of 1965, one of the most significant victories for the civil rights movement. English. Rated PG-13. 129 minutes. Blu-ray. Presented in collaboration with the Robert Penn Warren Center for the Humanities.

The Mend
Tuesday, March 29
Presented by: Scott Juengel, Director, Cinema & Media Arts and Senior Lecturer in English; with Nick Kline, A&S ‘16.
USA (2015) Dir: John Magary.

A comic drama about rage,doubt, lust, madness, and other brotherly hand-me-downs. This wonderfully strange and acidic debut announces writer/director John Magary as one of the most vibrant and energetic new faces in American cinema. English. Unrated. 110 min. Blu-ray. Presented in collaboration with Cinema & Media Arts.

Wednesday, March 30
Presented by: Melanie Adley, Associate Director and Senior Lecturer,Women’s & Gender Studies.
USA (2015) Dir: Sean Baker.

Indie Spirit winner Sean Baker directed and co-wrote (with Chris Bergoch) Tangerine, which was shot entirely on three iPhone 5s.Over the course of the film, Sin-Dee searches for the pimpwho broke her heart while Alexandra gets ready for her stage show. Introducesnewcomers and trans actresses Kitana Kiki Rodriguez and Mya Taylor. Rated R. 87 minutes. Blu-ray.  Presented in collaboration with Women’s & Gender Studies, and LGBTQI Life

They Are We
Wednesday, April 6
Presented by Gregory Melchor-Barz, Professor of Ethnomusicology and Faculty Head of North House.
Cuba/Sierra Leone/Liberia/Australia (2012) Dir: Emma Christopher.

Can a family separated by the transatlantic slave trade for 170 years use music and dance to find their way back to each other? This is the story of survival against the odds and how determination and shared humanity can triumph over the bleakest of histories. Multiple languages with English subtitles. Unrated.77 minutes. DVD. Presented in collaboration with North House, The Martha Rivers Ingram Commons.

Le Monde du Silence (The Silent World)
Tuesday, April 12
Presented by: Jennifer Fay, Associate Professor of Cinema & Media Arts, and English; and Allistair Sponsel, Professor of History.
France/Italy (1956) Co-Dir: Jacques Cousteau and Louis Malle.

This pioneering French nature documentary follows renowned explorer Jacques-Yves Cousteau as he investigates aquatic habitats in various locations around the world. Featuring whales,sharks, and many other varieties of marine life, the film doesn’t shy away from the brutality present in the natural world, but it also paints a fascinating picture of underwater exploration, as Cousteau and his associates strive to reach previously unseen ocean depths. When the film was re-mastered in 1990, Cousteau chose to leave in the scene depicting the mass killing of sharks in order to demonstrate how far society has come in its understanding and treatment of sharks.French with English subtitles. No rating. 86 minutes. Blu-ray. Presented in collaboration with Cinema & Media Arts, with the permission of the Cousteau Society.

Una Noche
Wednesday, April 13
Presented by: Heraldo Falconi, Senior Lecturer in Spanish.
Cuba/UK/USA (2012) Dir. Lucy Mulloy.

Trapped in the nervous desperation of Havana, Raúl dreams of escaping to Miami. When accused of assaulting a tourist, his only option is to flee. He begs his best friend to help him reach the forbidden land 90 miles across the ocean. His friend is tested when he’s torn between helping and protecting his twin sister. The film follows one sweltering day, full of hope and tension, that burns to a shocking climax. Spanish with English subtitles and English. 89 minutes.Blu-ray. Presented in collaboration with the AMIGOS student service organization.

My Joy
Tuesday, April 19
Presented by Cassio de Oliveira, Lecturer in Russian.
Ukraine (2010) Dir: Sergei Loznitsa.

A truck driver takes a wrong turn and finds himself lost in a bleak Russian underworld,struggling to survive amidst violent reminders of the country’s dark history. The first fiction film by documentarian Loznitsa, My Joy is a mischievous, ultra-nihilistic parable of post-Communist Russia, shot by master cinematographer Oleg Muto (The Deathof Mr. Lazarescu; 4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days). Russian with English subtitles. Unrated. 127 minutes. 35mm. Presented in collaboration with the department of Germanic & Slavic Languages.