Special Events

Please check back frequently to view Specials at Upstate Films!

Martin Scorsese presents Masterpieces of Polish Cinema

Series ongoing in both Rhinebeck and Woodstock
(Poland/1950s into the 1980s)
“In 2011, I had the opportunity to visit the Polish National Film School in Łódź, Poland, at the invitation of the great director, Andrzej Wajda. It was a trip I had wanted to make for years as I had long been drawn to the school and to Polish cinema from the time I was a film student at NYU, studying under my teacher and mentor, Haig Manoogian. It was at NYU—a school modeled after the legendary film program at Łódź – that I learned not just how films are made, but why.The school nurtured in me an unshakable belief in artistic expression grounded in Italian Neorealism, the French New Wave, the surreptitious poetry of the old Hollywood masters, and Polish cinema: the great, sweeping, humanistic, intimate and profound movies that were an integral part of what, looking back, seems more and more like a golden age of international cinema.”

 There are many revelations in the “Masterpieces of Polish Cinema” series and whether you’re familiar with some of these films or not, it’s an incredible opportunity to discover for yourself the great power of Polish cinema, on the big screen in brilliantly restored digital masters. — Martin Scorsese

“… This is a cinema of personal vision, social commitment and poetic responsibility from which we’ve all learned and which sets a high standard that, as a filmmaker, I strive to achieve with every film, every time out. Each of the films in this special series embodies what Wajda called “the ‘impertinent freedom of creativity in the cinema” These are films that have great emotional and visual power—they’re “serious” films that, with their depth, stand up to repeated viewings. The subtext of great conflict and cultural identity is universal, even if you don’t know the history of Poland, the themes in these films will resonate, as they did profoundly for me. There are many revelations in the “Masterpieces of Polish Cinema” series and whether you’re familiar with some of these films or not, it’s an incredible opportunity to discover for yourself the great power of Polish cinema, on the big screen in brilliantly restored digital masters. I hope you will enjoy these great films as much I do.Thanks to The Film Foundation and Milestone Films in the United States, and Propaganda Foundation, DI Factory and KinoRP in Poland for making this magnificent series possible.”
View Trailer click for films and times

Visions of Mary Frank

In Woodstock 
Aug 31
Sunday 2:30
(USA / 2014 / Directed by John Cohen)
Presented by the Woodstock Film Festival, VISIONS OF MARY FRANK will be followed by a q&a with Mary Frank and director John Cohen. Reception at Elena Zang Gallery to follow. Tickets $20. To purchase in advance through the WFF website, click here
Mary Frank’s work is like no other. Frank is an explorer of dreams and improvised drawings, a maker of triptychs, paintings, prints, photographs, and bodies permeated with mystery.
Most significant are her magnificent ceramic sculptures of female figures emerging from and returning to the earth, tormented, evoking mythic gods and human exigency. The film also portrays her activism – anti-war protests, advocacy for solar cookers in Africa, and feminism. This new film is about her own unique vision, which she has developed in her studio over 60 years.
Unrated / 55 mins. 
Link to a description on the Woodstock Film Fest site

The Found Footage Film Festival

In Woodstock 
September 16
8:00 pm
The Found Footage Festival, the acclaimed touring showcase of odd and hilarious found videos, will celebrate its tenth anniversary with a brand-new show in Woodstock. Hosts Nick Prueher and Joe Pickett, whose credits include The Onion and the Late Show with David Letterman, are excited to show off their new lineup of found video clips and live comedy in this one-night-only appearance on Tuesday, September 16th. Tickets to the Found Footage Festival are $10 and are available in advance at www.foundfootagefest.com or at the door.
The Found Footage Festival is a one-of-a-kind event showcasing videos found at garage sales and thrift stores and in warehouses and dumpsters throughout North America. Curators Joe Pickett and Nick Prueher take audiences on a guided tour of their latest and greatest VHS finds, providing live commentary and where-are-they-now updates on the people in these videotaped obscurities. From the curiously-produced industrial training video to the forsaken home movie donated to Goodwill, the Found Footage Festival resurrects forgotten treasures and serves them up in a lively celebration of all things found.
Among the new clips featured in the 2014 program:
-A new exercise video montage featuring a Christmas-themed workout, a
martial arts fitness regimen called “Tiger Moves,” and a tape called
“Butt Camp”
-Newly unearthed footage of the world’s most obnoxious home shopping
hosts, John & Johnny (c. 1987), and the long-awaited reunion
orchestrated by the FFF curators
-Exclusive footage of the Chef Keith news prank the curators pulled on
news stations in the Midwest over the holidays.
-A bizarre instructional video from 1997 with the redundant title,
“How to Have Cybersex on the Internet”
Click here to purchase tickets

London National Theatre: MEDEA

Coming Soon
(UK / 2014 / Directed by Carrie Cracknell)
Unrated / 105 mins.
Terrible things breed in broken hearts. Medea is a wife and a mother. For the sake of her husband, Jason, she’s left her home and borne two sons in exile. But when he abandons his family for a new life, Medea faces banishment and separation from her children. Cornered, she begs for one day’s grace.
It’s time enough. She exacts an appalling revenge and destroys everything she holds dear. Helen McCrory (The Last of the Haussmans) takes the title role in Euripides’ powerful tragedy, in a new version by Ben Power, directed by Carrie Cracknell, with music written by Will Gregory and Alison Goldfrapp.
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London National Theatre: A Streetcar Named Desire

Coming Soon
(UK / 2014 / Directed by Benedict Andrews)
Unrated / Length tba
The fastest-selling production in the Young Vic’s history, Tennessee Williams’ timeless masterpiece A Streetcar Named Desire will be broadcast from their London home by National Theatre Live… with Gillian Anderson (The X-Files, The Fall) as Blanche DuBois, Ben Foster (Lone Survivor, Kill Your Darlings) as Stanley, and Vanessa Kirby (BBC’s Great Expectations, Three Sisters at the Young Vic) as Stella.
As Blanche’s fragile world crumbles, she turns to her sister Stella for solace – but her downward spiral brings her face to face with the brutal, unforgiving Stanley Kowalski. Visionary director Benedict Andrews returns to the Young Vic following his Critics’ Circle Award-winning Three Sisters.
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Coming this fall
Date tba
(USA / 2014 / Directed by Robert Greene)
In Person: Director Robert Greene and actress Brandy Burre
With luxurious slow-motion sequences and staging worthy of a ‘50s melodrama, Robert Greene’s celebrated new film follows Brandy Burre, an actress (HBO’s The Wire) who gave up working to start a family and decided to re-start her career years later.
With glimpses of her stint on The Wire and a funny peek at Burre sifting through paltry royalty checks while her daughter plays nearby, Actress presents a sharp contrast between the allure of the spotlight and the dull rhythms that continue once it recedes. But as she returns to work, the affirmative aspect of her careerism is juxtaposed with conventional expectations about what a woman in her late 30s is supposed to want. Pivoting on an off-screen event that feels as impactful as the drama that takes place on camera, it becomes unclear how much Brandy is sacrificing the feelings and futures of her loved ones on the altar of self-interest. Acting, in the end, is not only Brandy’s profession; it’s something that she does all the time, whether interacting with her restaurateur husband Tim, her children, or Greene’s camera. With a dramatic, affective, and polyvalent ending, Greene’s film is documentary portraiture at its finest, taking on the resonance of a densely packed short story.
Unrated / 86 mins. 
View Trailer
Reviews forthcoming