Leos Carax's first film in thirteen years, HOLY MOTORS, comes to the Drafthouse on 12/07!
Simply put, you won’t know what hit you – but you will love every second and walk away wanting to immediately sit down and relive the experience by a second viewing. HOLY MOTORS, the first feature film in over a decade by the naturally elusive poet of the French cinema, writer/director Leos Carax, is the most original cinematic masterpiece in years. I say this in all sincerity as a film programmer with his reputation constantly on the line. Every so often, and too rarely these days, a feature comes along that you wholly invest yourself in – because you feel everybody should see something that reignites the cinematic imagination, catapulting cinematic storytelling forwards instead of backwards. HOLY MOTORS achieves precisely this remarkable quality and on December 7th, comes to the Drafthouse for a weeklong run, enveloped by an extremely rare and once-in-a-lifetime complete Leos Carax feature film retrospective.
I first saw HOLY MOTORS by way of a DVD screener sent to me by the distributor. At the time, I knew little about the film other than its title, its director, and the characteristic buzz that followed its world premiere at Cannes 2012. This is how I came to discover that knowing nothing at all about HOLY MOTORS – or, as little as possible -- before seeing it is the absolute best way to experience the film. It is not that the film is particularly hard to explain or that to provide details would spoil some whodunit narrative filled with red herrings. The reality is far simpler. HOLY MOTORS is a film filled with so many sheer pleasures, countless charming, wonderful, and titillating surprises, that to describe it in linear, descriptive terms would be to spoil the experience altogether. As a film unlike anything you likely have seen, heard, or dreamed before, HOLY MOTORS is a series of unpredictable genre-roaming impressions, a vast and curious maze in which the minds of both filmmaker and viewer wander, not exactly knowing at all where they will wind up next.
I have since seen HOLY MOTORS twice more and expect personally to see it a fourth and fifth time while we play it in our theaters. As the 2012 Critics’ Award Winner at this past Fantastic Fest, the critics more than agree that this is the standout art house title of 2012. In the same way, well-known and historically significant French film publication Cahiers du Cinéma (Notebooks on Cinema) recently announced their top ten films of 2012, with HOLY MOTORS occupying the #1 spot. If neither of these accolades are enough to convince you of what has been and will continue to be HOLY MOTORS’ impact on modern art cinema, my dad saw the movie last week and absolutely loved it. As someone who loves cinema, but notoriously resists subtitled films, his enthusiasm about and for this film was pleasantly alarming and significant. Like me, he plans to watch it again – and maybe again after that. This film has the power to change minds, to topple stereotypes or preconceived notions of what art films are and/or can be. In other words, Leos Carax’s HOLY MOTORS is a film operating entirely without pretension: an utterly sincere narrative portrait.
Around the same time, as a way of celebrating the release of HOLY MOTORS, starting on Sunday, Dec. 2nd we are presenting a complete retrospective of Leos Carax’s feature films in partnership with the Austin Film Society. The series will run through Dec. 10th with one screening each of Carax’s four previous feature films. All of the screenings will take place at South Lamar, so mark these dates down on your calendar!
- Dec. 2nd - 7PM: LOVERS ON THE BRIDGE (1991) – Digital Presentation
- Dec. 6th - 7PM: POLA X (1999) – 35mm
- Dec. 9th - 7PM: BOY MEETS GIRL (1984) – 35mm
- Dec. 10th - 7PM: MAUVAIS SANG AKA BAD BLOOD (1986) – 35mm
Tickets are on sale now for LOVERS ON THE BRIDGE and POLA X, with the other two retrospective screenings to follow shortly. Tickets are apt to go quickly for this rare chance to experience a director’s entire filmography, so do yourself a favor and make a reservation on the early side – you won’t regret it!
If despite all of the above, you still find yourself craving that semblance of narrative summary for HOLY MOTORS, lead yourself to the trailer, which can be found here. As you will realize only upon seeing HOLY MOTORS for yourself, the trailer tells you everything and nothing in two-and-half darn wonderful minutes.
White limousines, Denis Lavant, and Kylie Minogue sporting a Jean Seberg haircut: see HOLY MOTORS!!!
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