Celebrating with cinema of the Sixties

By Vinny Abbatecola

Jules and Jim is a passionate story of happiness, heartache, love and loss.

 

As a student at Rider, you’ve most likely heard that this is a particularly special year for the College of Liberal Arts, Education and Sciences. Next semester, it will commemorate its 50th anniversary.

There will surely be more exuberance as we get closer to the actual date, Feb. 29. The English Department already has plans for its yearly film symposium, held every late February or early March. As in other years, it will be a two-day event focusing on a certain genre of film. Two years ago, it celebrated achievements in horror cinema. Last year, the occasion was dedicated to discussing independent films.

This year, in honor of the college’s School of Liberal Arts and Science school celebration of the big 50, the spring symposium’s theme will be “Films From 1962.” Although it isn’t definite what titles or events will be listed in the symposium’s program, you can be sure that the planners will pick out some commendable films to observe this milestone. Last Saturday, the head of Rider’s Film and Media Studies program, Dr. Cynthia Lucia, hosted a Cinematheque, which is a daylong marathon of films. This one was devoted specifically films of romantic intrigue.

The series consisted of the first James Bond film, Dr. No, a French romance entitled Jules and Jim, an outing with Doris Day in That Touch of Mink and an Italian romance called L’Eclisse.

Jules and Jim, a film by Francois Truffaut, is an unconventional love story that was part of the French New Wave of cinema.

This movie exhibited the different filming techniques that became prominent in that wave, such as jump cuts, freeze frames, the hand-held camera movement that we see in many films today, and long tracking shots.  While long takes weren’t first used in the French New Wave, it was used several times in Jules and Jim.

The film chronicles the two titular characters as they try to figure out how to deal with the love they have for the same woman. The story spans over the course of 25 years in the first half of the 20th century.

Lucia was eager to explain her reason for choosing these specific films.

“The James Bond film, I thought, would be fun because it’s the first one,” she said. “Students might have an interest in seeing how this longest-running franchise in Hollywood history got started.”

She also mentioned her favorite, Jules and Jim.

Jules and Jim probably moves me the most because when we get into middle age and examine the friendships and romantic commitments we’ve been engaged in or have failed to be engaged in, we are led to ask ourselves questions about the meaning of it all,” she said. “I think Jules and Jim puts some of those questions on the table for viewers to think about.”

This Cinematheque is a sample of what this year’s film symposium will have to offer. If you would like to get the full effect, be sure to keep your ears open for more information on the Film and Media Studies Symposium.

There will be another Cinematheque on Feb. 18, which will also screen four films from 1962. Be sure to take these chances to come view a classic film and join in the observance of this highlight in the history of Rider’s School of Liberal Arts and Science.

 

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