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Paris Calligrammes

Directed by: Ulrike Ottinger | 2021 | 2h 11m | Unrated

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• General Admission – $12.00

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These are challenging times for everyone and while we are reopening our South Beach theater, we know some of you aren’t ready just yet to come back into a theater and we totally understand. We’ll be waiting to greet you when you are! In the meantime, we will continue to offer a robust lineup of films to you virtually in addition to our in-person offerings!

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Ulrike Ottinger, then a young painter, lived in Paris in the 1960s. Now a film-maker, she looks back on that time, weaving memories of the Parisian life and the upheavals of the time into a cinematic poem with the city at its center.

German avant-garde filmmaker Ulrike Ottinger immerses us in her Paris of the 1960s – a vibrant community of European artists, writers, philosophers, and activists (Max Ernst, Marcel Marceau, Paul Célan, Walter Mehring, Hans Arp, Jean Genet, Camus, Juliet Greco, et alia), and the constellation of sites where they converged: Franz Picard’s eponymous antiquarian bookstore, Johnny Friedlaender’s atelier de gravure, fashion photographer Willy Maywald’s studio, Henri Langlois & Lotte Eisner’s Cinémathèque Française, Brasserie Lipp. Capturing both the glamour and political commotion (the Algerian War, May 1968) with archival footage, photos, and personal artifacts, Ottinger’s essayistic documentary is at once memoir, social history, and love letter to Paris—where the alchemy of Marxism, Dadaism, Surrealism, jazz, and post-colonial debate spawned a generation of fervid productivity, along with Ottinger’s own creative coming-of-age.

“Ottinger takes us through this formative time of her life in a way that deftly balances past and present to paint a picture of a threshold era of both positives and negatives.”

“The film is an extraordinary sort of aesthetico-political nonfiction bildungsroman, in which Ottinger fuses her self-portraiture and her reminiscences with the life of the city and the ideas of the times, as she encountered them.”