Kurt F. Stone, D.D., is now beginning his 16th year with LLS and his passion for film is, he says, “genetic,” having been born in Hollywood, CA and raised both in and around the movie industry. A graduate of the University of California (B.A.), the Eagleton Institute of Politics and the Hebrew Union College (M.A.H.L. and D.D.), Kurt is the best-selling author of two books on the United States Congress and is currently hard at work on a new book about the history of Hollywood. A much sought-after lecturer, occasional actor and ordained rabbi, his political op-ed column “The K.F. Stone Weekly” has, over the past decade, developed an international following.
Laughter: The Universal Language Eight Films That Will Cure What Ails You
The late comic Victor Borge hit the nail on the head when he said, “Laughter is the shortest distance between two people.” Often, it is the best response to a crazy world. But what is considered side-splitting in one era or in one culture may be droll, even incomprehensible in another. In the world of cinema, this is especially true, for often there is a fine line between a comedy and a funny movie. The eight films we will view in this course are all classic comedies that have the added advantage of being funny, ironic, satiric and occasionally just downright silly. So join us, leave your cares behind, and let’s spend a couple of hours enjoying the magic elixir of laughter. Each film will begin with an introduction by Dr. Stone. Following each screening, we will share thoughts, feelings and questions.
Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown (Spain 1988) — A woman’s lover leaves her. She wants to know why; so do his wife and new girlfriend.
Kind Hearts and Coronets (England 1949) — A poor relative of a duke plans to inherit the title by murdering the 8 heirs who stand between him and his goal.
Duck Soup (America 1933) — The Marx Brothers run amok in the state of Freedonia, where Groucho (Rufus T. Firefly) becomes president.
Mr. Hulot’s Holiday (France 1953) — Mr. Hulot (Jacques Tati) goes to a seaside resort where he wreaks havoc; a Gallic masterpiece.
The Great Dictator (America 1940) — Charlie Chaplin’s classic satire on Hitler, Mussolini and anti-Semitism.
The Lady Killers (England 1955) — 5 oddball criminals decide to rob a bank; they rent rooms from an elderly woman, telling her they are all classical musicians.
In the Loop (England 2009) — A dizzying tour-de-farce as the U.K. Prime Minister and the President decide on whether going to war is a good thing.
The General (America 1926) — Buster Keaton’s masterpiece about a simple railroad engineer trying to save his train -- and his girl – during the Civil War. Quite simply, the best silent comedy ever made.
Course # W8M7 — Eight Weeks
Lifelong Learning Complex, Jupiter Campus
Mondays — Jan. 13, 27; Feb. 3,17, 24; March 3, 10, 17; NO CLASS ON JAN. 20 AND FEB. 10
7:00 p.m.—8:30 p.m.
Reel Women Six Acclaimed Female Directors
With a few notable exceptions, the vast majority of film directors have been men. Alice Guy-Blaché (1873-1968) was the first woman film director. Her 1896 short,
La Fée aux Choux — “The Cabbage Fairy” is generally considered to be the first ever fiction film. By 1910, Blaché had moved from her native France to America,
where she built and ran her own movie studio in Ft. Lee, New Jersey. She would go on to direct more than 400 films. Since her day, a relatively small number of
women have broken through the glass ceiling and succeeded in what has long been a man’s world.
This course will introduce six notable exceptions – women whose skills and vision are the equal of any man who ever cried out “Action!” Each class will begin
with a brief biography of the week’s director, followed by the screening of what, in Dr. Stone’s opinion, is their best — or most representative — work. As always, after
the screening, the class will engage in what hopefully will be an in-depth discussion.
Lois Weber (1879–1939) — The only woman to become a successful director during the silent era, Weber produced films of social import, dealing with themes ranging from alcoholism and drug addiction to prostitution. We will view Weber’s 1921 silent masterpiece, TOO WISE WIVES.
Dorothy Arzner (1897–1979) — The only successful woman director during Hollywood’s “Golden Age,” Arzner populated her films with strong independent women such as Rosalind Russell in her 1936 film CRAIG’S WIFE.
Ida Lupino (1918–1995) — A highly successful actress, Lupino made the transition to being an equally successful director of film noir and message pictures, such as her 1950 film OUTRAGE, which dealt with the then-taboo subject of rape.
Sofia Coppola (1971– ) — Daughter of the legendary Francis Ford Copolla, Sofia is a chip off the old block. Her 2003 drama LOST IN TRANSLATION takes an extraordinary look into the nature of relationships.
Jane Campion (1954– ) — The New Zealand-born Campion is one of her generation’s most acclaimed directors – and one of the few women to be nominated for an Academy Award. Her 1989 film SWEETIE presents a marvelous look at sisters, family ... and life.
Lone Scherfig (1959– ) — The Danish-born Scherfig is a genius when it comes to getting under the character’s skin to reveal the impulses of good and evil. 2009’s AN EDUCATION is a coming-of-age tale which takes place in 1960s London.
Course # S6M5 — Six Weeks
Lifelong Learning Complex, Jupiter Campus
Mondays — March 24, 31, April 7, 28; May 5, 12 No Class April 14 and 21