Although Madison lost the UW's beloved Starlight Cinema series earlier this year, local cinephiles are gaining two new series.
One is the Community Cinema program, an effort that partners Madison Public Library with the Independent Television Service. On the third Saturday of each month, audiences at the Central Library, 201 W. Mifflin St., will be treated to a sneak peek of a documentary that will later air on PBS' Independent Lens. A discussion will follow each DVD screening, led by a panel of local experts and special guests.
The series begins Sept. 18 with a 1 p.m. screening of Copyright Criminals. The film recounts the history of musical sampling and the consequent debate over copyright, compensation and creativity in the age of intellectual property. A panel will follow with Madison's own Clyde Stubblefield, known as the most sampled musician ever, and DJ Vinnie Toma.
Films in the nine-part series include Reel Injun: On the Trail of the Hollywood Indian and Deep Down. The screenings are free.
The Madison Museum of Contemporary Art is set to open its fall Spotlight Cinema series with five films from 2009 and 2010, three of which will be presented in 35mm, and two digitally. The series kicks off with Guy and Madeline on a Park Bench, named by Artforum as one of the top 10 films of 2009. Since Madison gets to see it two months before its theatrical premiere in New York, we should feel a little special. The screening takes place at 7 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 16 in the lecture hall of the museum, 227 State St.
Tom Yoshikami, guest curator of film at MMoCA, says the films were selected to offer a taste of what the world of foreign and independent has to offer.
"It's an eclectic mix of films, but all have succeeded on the festival circuit -- if these films played the Wisconsin Film Festival, they'd all sell out instantly -- and are critically acclaimed," says Yoshikami.
Other films in the series include comedic documentary Winnebago Man, which recounts the viral video phenomenon of RV salesman Jack Rebney, and Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives, a quirky Thai film about a man's final few days with his family. Screenings are free for MMoCA members and $7 per screening (or $25 for the whole series) for the public.