Thursday, January 5, 2012

First Look at Museum of Moving Image

I am ashamed to say that in my 14 year stint as a New Yorker that I've never been to Museum of Moving Image, one of the city's better cultural institutions located in cozy Astoria, Queens. I've heard of all the great things, been impressed by many film series they've been offering over the years. But for some reason, I have never ventured north to visit.

Buried under the end of the year shenanigans, I totally overlooked the newsletters from MoMI about First Look: their first annual independent film showcase by visionaries from all over the world, starting this weekend. As I was beating myself up for missing the boat in getting the press pass for the festival, Tomoko Kawamoto from the press office at MoMI saved me from hurting myself further. Thanks to her, I'll be leisurely attending many of the screenings. The roster is just amazing: Chantal Akerman (Jeanne Dielman, 23 Quai du Commerce, 1080 Bruxelles), Philippe Grandrieux (Un Lac), Philippe Garrel (Regular Lovers), Gariel Abrantes & Daniel Schmidt (A History of Mutual Respect), Raya Martin (Independencia), Andrei Zvyagintsev (The Return), Johnnie To (Exiled)- all showcasing their latest films. I'll be reporting from Astoria for the next two weeks. Stay tuned!

From Museum of Moving Image Press Release:

Curated by Dennis Lim, Rachael Rakes, and David Schwartz

To start the New Year, the Museum introduces a brand-new showcase for inventive, groundbreaking international cinema. Modest in size but ambitious in scope, First Look is a highly selective group of films that are distinguished by their artistic audacity. Established and emerging directors create new approaches to narrative, documentary, and experimental film, in many cases creating hybrid forms. These films are adventures; not only do they bring us to new places, they offer new ways of seeing the world, and they redefine their medium. Nearly all of the selections are New York premieres, and many are accompanied by personal appearances. In-depth articles about the films will be published on Moving Image Source, the Museum’s multimedia magazine.

First Look at MoMI