SF Galleries Speed-Viewing

by Abigail (’14)

I had no idea there were so many galleries downtown! And all free!

For any parents reading this who don’t know what I’m talking about, last Saturday the C-Dubs were taken at hyperspeed through San Francisco’s art world by Ronald Chase, creator of Art and Film. As a culmination of the unit on art criticism Ronald taught on Thursday and Friday, we visited twelve galleries in less than two hours, practicing our new analytical skills.

 Ronald’s explanations of each room helped with the dizziness of consuming so much art at once. The experience was first-hand, which, as he pointed out, is the best way to learn. I especially enjoyed finally seeing one of Andy Goldsworthy’s mud-walls in person. It had more substance, the clay looked thicker and more impressive, than in books. You know it’s real if it’s in a gallery, especially with something as tactile as Goldsworthy’s pieces. At the same time, it felt more fleeting: photographs preserve things as they are, but mud cracks and changes.

On the first day of class, Ronald said that it takes ten to fifteen years for an artist to develop a style of her own; that, to be a strong artist, one must have outside support for the first years. It reminded me of a quote from Robert Frost: “The poet, as everyone knows, must strike his original note sometime between the ages of fifteen and twenty-five…School and college have been conducted with the almost express purpose of keeping him busy with something else till the danger of his ever creating anything is past.” One of the reasons I appreciated Ronald’s unit, and his whole program, is that it increases the danger of our creating things.

In closing: I think we can all agree that Ronald, and the parent who made our picnic lunch on Saturday, have our undying gratitude for feeding us. Starving adolescents tend not to be the best of listeners or thinkers, and the food more or less assured our complete interest and participation…am I right, or am I right?


FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 14 CINE/CLUB Randall Museum 199 Museum Way Refreshments 6:30 Film Program 7
Ronald Chase, moderator
Short Film: Chris Anthony’s And Everything in Between
Student group film: The Balloon Man 
Terry Jones’ THE MEANING OF LIFE (1983, England)

A now, for something completely different! This Monty Python classic is filled with some of their most outrageously funny sketches. The British comedy troupe takes on the challenge of uncovering the meaning of life, from birth, through school, work, live organ transplants and the afterlife.  It’s extravagant excess and a thoughtful skewing of the world we live in. 

PARENTAL WARNING: there’s simulated sex, but it’s a riot.


A masterpiece by Monty Python?  You bet. And close to one of the most popular films we’ve ever shown. We’re starting this year with a Hit Parade! Python makes fun of all the popular classics—starting off with a musical take-off a-la-Mary Poppins about Catholics and Protestants war on birth control. 

It continues with sex education, corporate mergers, national heath care, the bureaucracy, over-eating, greed, and winds up, of course, in Heaven. You’ll never forget the “ middle-of-the-film” with its elephant dressed in a tux and the mysterious question, “where did that fishy go?” We hope you won’t die laughing, but we’ll have the ambulance waiting, just in case. Come early because this one will be really popular.

Apocalypse Now at Cine/Club

by Noa (’16)

It’s safe to say that seeing Apocolypse Now as my first Cine/Club experience left me completely blown away and guaranteed my further (voluntary) interest in Cineclub’s films. Coming in, I had expected my first film viewing to be tedious and boring, having never seen or heard much about Apocolypse Now and having been informed that the movie would be “really, really long.” Instead, I found myself completely engrossed in the story of Benjamin Willard, an army captain who is sent on a mission by his military superiors to “terminate” a colonel gone rogue. I was perhaps even more absorbed in the images of the film, from the brilliant pain and insanity of Willard in the opening scene to the ominous shadows obscuring the face of the colonel, than the plot itself. These images, combined with the frenzied and panicked rhythm of the soundtrack, left me with a deep feeling of uneasiness and tension that heightened both the film and the film viewing experience in the best possible way.

(Midori) Never had a film left me so completely and utterly terrified as Apocalypse Now had. Coppola’s use of imagery, motif, cinematography… Even something as small has failing to focus the shot on something left me gulping for air. Anyone who has ever watched almost any film with me can tell you that I cry. A lot. I get easily carried away by the plot, by empathy for the characters (part of the reason why I love going to Cine/Club), but during the entire run of Apocalypse Now, I didn’t cry. Horror left me in a state of shock, hopelessly gaping at the screen, and flinching almost constantly at the scenes. It’s definitely a movie I will carry with me for the rest of my life.

Cine/Club: In Heaven, They Speak the Hunsrück Dialect.

By Nick Cloud (’15)

Midori—Mykel—Olga—I greet you, my comrades! Yea, we have put them all to shame, have we not? My God, my God, but we have. Look upon us, ye low! Look, see how our spirits swell, tremble, with splendidness, see, we are arrayed in triumph, radiant more for the shadows below our eyes, sickliness and stasis of limb, which are of martyrdom, for we have made victory, victory of zeal unaccountable! Look and greet the fog, my friends, eye to its eye, for you have proven your selves’ worth and are unblemished.

We saw the feasts of the living and dead, aye, we watched living, we watched—Heimat! Fifteen and a half hours of Schabbach, from 1919–82, fifteen and a half hours of Maria, of Paul, of Eduard, of Wilfried, of Ernst, of Anton, of Anton, of Hermann, of Klärchen, of Lucie, of Otto, of Glasisch, of Häns, of Katharina, of Fritz, of Martina, of Apollonia, of Horst, of Gustav, of Marie-Goot, of Pauline, of Matthias, of Walter, of Madame de Gallimasch, of homemade sausage, of Mayor Alois, of Conneticut, New York, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Delaware, Maryland, Maine, Rhode Island, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Virginia, Vermont, Delaware, West Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Florida, Alabama, Louisiana, Mississippi, Kentucky, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Tennessee, Iowa, Wisconsin, Arkansas, Minnesota, Idaho, North Dakota, South Dakota, Montana, Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas, New Mexico, Arizona, Colorado, Utah, Nevada, Nebraska, Wyoming, Oregon, Washington, California, and Michigan, all the first part of the great chronicle. You who have all had Doctor Who marathons, you have not had our like, you have not had the like of Edgar Reitz.

And oh! Midori, Mykel, Olga, my friends, in hereafter times we shall recall, how when sleep came at us in sheets, we four, we stood mightily together and weathered it, though it drew down like a tide our eyelids’ portcullises, with prods and coughs we kept each other awake (or in some cases perhaps succumbed briefly, but were up soon enough afterwards): how, when overwhelmed utterly by the loneliness of so many lives passing, we stood side by side in a dark line, and our pride would not let us break down: how two days we sat together, carbon-copied the same short pleasant interactions, then at breaks drank carbonated lemon water: and we shall say—

But what is there to say? There is no end of it. There are no characters in Heimat, there are only the Schabbachvolk and their lives; and these do not have the easy escape of ending, mercifully, after two hours, but they go on, and on, and on, and we are made to go on with them.

(Midori) Indeed, Heimat 1 was quite the experience. As a writer, a reader, a television-watcher, I have grown acclimated to stories– those of the set up-plot-rising action-climax sort. It’s safe to say that most of us have. Heimat was completely different, a documentary of a family’s life through the years and generations. It was the purest kind of story– a story of the living, that inspired an enduring loyalty for the people. I say people, not characters, because they are beyond serving a purpose for the sake of furthering the plot. I also hesitate to say that the movie has no plot, because living is the plot, and watching these people live out their lives is a grand privilege that I know will stay with me always.

4/27 – Stalker

This is the second to last Cine/club! Take advantage.

Refreshments 6:30 Film 7pm

Andrei Tarkovsky’s STALKER (1979, Russia)

A different kind of science fiction–a journey through “The Zone” to find the room where wishes come true. Come stretch your mind.

“The film itself has become synonymous both with cinema’s claims to high art and a test of the viewer’s ability to appreciate it as such. Anyone sharing Cate Blanchett’s enthusiasm for it – “every single frame of the film is burned into my retina” – attests not just to the director’s lofty purity of purpose, but to their own capacity to survive at the challenging peaks of human achievement.”

“Danger! High-radiation arthouse!”

3/23 – Ikiru at the Randall

FRIDAY MARCH 23 CiNE/CLUB Randall Museum 199 Museum Way.
Refreshments 6:30 FIlm Program 7pm

Akira Kurosawa’s IKIRU (1952, Japan)
An inspiring film about a humble clerk who discovers his true calling and sets about to effect a change in his world.


2/3– Amarcord


Frederico Fellini’s AMARCORD (1973, Italy)
This glorious film Fellini made about his childhood summons up atmospheres and images from the past. Amarcord recreates life in a small Italian town through the lives of a young boy. It’s magical.

Runtime: 2 hr. 5 min.

(Rotten Tomatoes)

As many of you know, we show a Fellini film nearly every year, and usually we run the gamut of his most famous masterpieces. This is our first time showing 
Amacord and it’s high time. A very popular work, it captures much of the awe and wonder of life in a small Italian town with all the colorful characters in place a boy might remember. It’s one of the least aggressively bizarre films he’s made, but its rich imagery, honestly shaped scenes and big splashes of film magic make it a milestone in the later films.

Along with Bergman, Frederico Fellini’s career defines serious 20th century film, though in quite contrasting ways. Fellini began his career as an artist, and during the early 40’s wrote a number of radio and film scripts while being an all around help with an actor friends traveling theater company. At the end of the war, they opened The Funny Face Shop, an arcade for GI’s which specialized in quick portraits, photos, voice recordings for the folks back home. One day a visit from director Roberto Rosselini brought Fellini his collaboration on a script for 
Open City, and he followed this with work onPaisan, both sterling film classics.

After a couple of unsuccessful stabs at film, Fellini directed Il Vitelloni (the Loafers) which brought him great success.He followed this with one thoughtful success after another including La Strada, Nights of Cabiria, and La Dolce Vita, all in a familiar post neo-realist style. Out of this work emerged a new style which announced itself with 8 1/2, films driven by theme rather than plot, films filled with atmosphere, color,memorable characters and rich fantasy. From these films, the adjective “Felliniesque” entered our vocabulary. Amacord is one of the first of this later style.


Art&Film 1/20 – Pather Panchali

Friday, January 20th at Randall Museum (199 Museum Way) will be:

Sayajit Ray’s PATHER PANCHALI (1955, India)

The debut film from India’s most famous director was made with few funds and loads of talent and faith. It takes two children in rural India through their childhoods and into adolescence, capturing the atmosphere and rhythms of daily life with exquisite detail. Another genuine masterpiece you’ll be glad you didn’t miss.

This is the first film of the famous Apu Trilogy, but it also holds up on its own. The characters, mother, father, grandmother and neighbors, rich and poor, are brilliantly etched. You feel you are visiting India and are vividly a part of the images, the rituals, the texture of daily life and this bonds you to the the characters. It is an old fashioned “story film” as good as they come.

Ray studied painting and art history at the University of Calcutta. He started his career as an illustrator; one of the books he illustrated, 
Pather Panchali, left a deep impression on him. He dreamed of filming it but in 1940’s India being a film maker was an unattainable dream. In 1950 he visited London and while there saw a film by Vittorio De Sica called The Bicycle Thief. This classic neo-realist film was filmed on location with non-actors, and on a tiny budget. Ray was so moved and excited, he returned to India and tried to raise money for his film. Unsuccessful, he nonetheless began filming with friends on weekends with the encouragement of a French film maker, Jean Renoir, who was in India making a film. To fund the film, he spent his salary and sold all his possessions. He was in despair, almost at the point of abandoning the project, when the Bengal government stepped in and gave him money to finish it.

The story of the making of this film is an inspiration to all desperate young filmmakers. In 1955, Pather Panchali was shown at the Cannes Festival and caused a sensation. It introduced Indian cinema to the West and won the Jury prize. Encouraged, Ray went on to complete the trilogy with Aparajito and The World of Apu. He continued making masterful humanist films about India for the next thirty years, and was given an honorary Academy Award the year of his death in 1992.

Art&Film: This Is England 1/13

100 Potrero at Division Refreshments 6:30 Film program 7pm

Short film: Peter Fischli & David Weiss’ THE WAY THINGS GO

Shane Meadow’s THIS IS ENGLAND (2006, UK)
We start the year with a powerhouse of a film—and something different from our usual fare. This film takes us into the world of England’s skinheads and neo-nazis to examine the way young people can be so easily influenced by their peers. This film has an authenticity about it that can’t be matched.
PARENTAL WARNING: Violence, some nudity and mild sex scenes.
(It’s about teenagers)

(Link to Rotten Tomatoes)


This film is blessed with powerful performances and an absolutely authentic atmosphere of the English Midlands, 1983. It can’t help but affect you. The hero, a teenage boy who is bullied at school and harassed at home, is befriended by a group of skin-heads who initiate him into their company. As some of the members are pulled in a darker direction, being a part of the group brings a lot more than he bargained for.


Shane Meadow’s is one of the finest directors in England. His films, Dead Man’s Shoes, Twenty-Four Seven, and Somers Town are all sturdy achievements, but he is practically unknown in America, and that’s a real shame. His films have great moral character and concentrate on the ways that young people are badly influenced and damaged by the worse elements in their society. Meadows knows the world of This Is England well, having himself been involved in petty crime in his youth. He works with young actors especially well. No one else could have made this film.

Meet at Metreon on the park side facing the waterfall. We’ll be sitting on the wall waiting for you! Please RSVP so we can plan the picnic.
11: We’ll visit the new gallery shows along Geary St.
12:30 Picnic Yerba Buena Gardens