View Finders: Women Cinematographers

July 12–November 21, 2019

Showcasing the artistic visions of female cinematographers around the world, this series asks whether there is such a thing as a “female gaze.”

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  • Cameraperson

  • The Wonders

  • The Strange Case of Angelica

  • Gang of Four

  • The Milk of Sorrow

  • Upcoming
    Films
  • Past
    Films
  • Past
    Events

Upcoming Films

  • Swoon

    Tom Kalin
    United States, 1992

    Cinematography by Ellen Kuras

    • Saturday, September 28 8 PM
    Introduction by Damon R. Young

    This cornerstone of the “New Queer Cinema” of the early 1990s revisits the notorious 1924 Leopold & Loeb murders, with striking black-and-white cinematography by Ellen Kuras.

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  • Paranoid Park

    Gus Van Sant
    United States, 2007

    Cinematography by Rain Li and Christopher Doyle

    • Saturday, October 12 8:15 PM

    A young Portland skateboarder finds himself over his head in Gus Van Sant’s dreamy examination of bodies in motion and teen lives in stasis. Rain Li’s Super 8 footage complements images by longtime Wong Kar-wai collaborator Christopher Doyle.

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  • Stories We Tell

    Sarah Polley
    Canada, 2012

    Cinematography by Iris Ng

    • Sunday, October 20 7 PM

    Actress-turned-director Sarah Polley sets her gaze toward her own family history—and her remarkable, remarkably unconventional mother—in this moving, constantly surprising documentary on home life, marriage, and female independence. “Revelatory” (New York Times).

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  • Aileen: Life and Death of a Serial Killer

    Nick Broomfield, Joan Churchill
    United Kingdom, United States, 2004

    Cinematography by Joan Churchill

    • Sunday, October 27 7 PM

    This riveting portrait of serial killer Aileen Wuornos brings us face-to-face with a defiant, increasingly delusional woman about to be executed—and dares to find her humanity. “A haunting look at a life gone wrong” (Film Society of Lincoln Center).

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  • The Judge

    Erika Cohn
    Palestine, United States, 2017

    Cinematography by Amber Fares

    • Sunday, November 3 5 PM

    This intimate documentary follows the first female judge appointed to any Middle Eastern Shari’a court—one woman attempting to achieve justice in a system designed to favor men.

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  • The Sky on Location

    Babette Mangolte
    United States, 1982
    • Wednesday, November 20 7 PM
    Filmmaker/Cinematographer Babette Mangolte in Person

    Mangolte’s meditation on the vastness of the American West moves between Arizona and New Mexico, finding awe and inspiration—and exploring the very concept of wilderness.

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  • Routine Pleasures

    Jean-Pierre Gorin
    United States, United Kingdom, France, 1986
    • Thursday, November 21 7 PM
    Cinematographer Babette Mangolte in Person

    Jean-Pierre Gorin explores ideas of work, the male imaginary, and American culture through an essay film inspired by critic and artist Manny Farber. Babette Mangolte’s cinematography is “marvelously nuanced” (Senses of Cinema).

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Past Films

  • Devil's Freedom

    • Sunday, September 15 7 PM
    Everardo González
    Mexico, 2017

    Cinematography by María Secco

    This powerful documentary on the victims (and victimizers) of Mexico’s drug wars features heartbreaking interviews and stylized, even surreal still portraits by DP María Secco. “Harrowing . . . mournful . . . deeply impactful” (Variety).

  • Velvet Goldmine

    • Saturday, September 14 8 PM
    Todd Haynes
    United States, 1998

    Cinematography by Maryse Alberti
    BAMPFA Student Committee Pick

    Todd Haynes’s glitter-and-makeup-filled tribute to glam-rock excess follows a Bowie-like singer’s rise and fall; cinematographer Maryse Alberti leaves no spandex leopard print unnoticed. Jonathan Rhys Meyers, Ewan McGregor, and Christian Bale star.

  • Naked Spaces: Living Is Round

    • Thursday, September 5 7 PM
    Trinh T. Minh-ha
    United States, 1985

    Acclaimed Berkeley-based filmmaker/professor/theorist Trinh T. Minh-ha filmed West African living spaces to assemble what she called a “film on the poetics of dwelling.” “Breathtaking in [its] tactile beauty” (TIFF).

    Filmmaker/Cinematographer Trinh T. Minh-ha in Person

  • 25 Watts

    • Saturday, August 31 6 PM
    Juan Pablo Rebella, Pablo Stoll
    Uruguay, 2001

    Cinematography by Bárbara Alvarez

    Three aimless teens stagger through another Montevideo day in this low-budget paean to cigarettes, wine, and rock ’n’ roll, which heralded the arrival of a new Uruguayan cinema. “Recalls the spirit of the Czech New Wave” (Michael Fox). 

  • The Wonders

    • Thursday, August 22 7 PM
    Alice Rohrwacher
    Italy, Switzerland, Germany, 2014

    Cinematography by Hélène Louvart

    The lives of a beekeeping family in rural Italy are disrupted by the arrival of a sullen teenage boy and a cheesy TV production crew in this evocative look at rituals, relationships, and adolescent dreams. “A beautiful, richly imagined ride” (Washington Post). 

  • Cameraperson

    • Wednesday, August 14 7 PM
    Kirsten Johnson
    United States, 2016

    Cinematography by Kirsten Johnson
    BAMPFA Student Committee Pick

    Kristen Johnson’s look back at footage from her long career as a cinematographer becomes a fascinating investigation of the craft and ethics of documentary filmmaking. With Emiko Omori’s work-in-progress Vanishing Chinatown: The World of the May's Photo Studio.

    Emiko Omori in Person

  • Tokyo Sonata

    • Friday, August 9 8:15 PM
    Kiyoshi Kurosawa
    Japan, Netherlands, Hong Kong, 2008

    Imported Print
    Cinematography by Akiko Ashizawa

    A laid-off salaryman pretends to go to work every day in order not to disappoint his family in Kiyoshi Kurosawa’s darkly comic, deeply unsettling drama, which “tells us a great deal about contemporary Japan” (New York Review of Books). 

  • Today

    • Sunday, August 4 5 PM
    Alain Gomis
    Senegal, 2012

    Cinematography by Crystel Fournier

    American musician/slam poet Saul Williams stars in this dreamlike Senegalese fable of one man’s last day on earth, as prescribed by fate. “Spiritual, soulful and captivating” (Hollywood Reporter). 

  • Gang of Four

    • Thursday, August 1 7 PM
    Jacques Rivette
    France, Switzerland, 1989

    Cinematography by Caroline Champetier

    Performance, life, and cinema merge in Rivette’s metaphysical mystery. “One of the director’s most spellbinding explorations of the sometimes terrifyingly thin line between everyday life and the strangeness beneath it” (Film Society of Lincoln Center).

  • The Milk of Sorrow

    • Sunday, July 28 4:30 PM
    Claudia Llosa
    Spain, Peru, 2009

    Cinematography by Natasha Braier

    The niece of novelist Mario Vargas Llosa fashioned this provocative, poetic fable of the survivors of a generation of political violence, as the daughter of an indigenous woman learns more about her mother’s life—and suffering. With Bertrand Bonello’s short Sarah Winchester, Ghost Opera.

  • Eastern Boys

    • Thursday, July 25 7 PM
    Robin Campillo
    France, 2013

    Cinematography by Jeanne Lapoirie

    A “simple” sex-for-hire agreement between a French bourgeois and a Ukrainian immigrant turns into something more dangerous—and more profound. “Explores interlocking themes of sexuality, immigration, and power dynamics with a cleareyed sensitivity” (New York Times). 

  • The Intruder

    • Sunday, July 14 7 PM
    Claire Denis
    France, South Korea, 2004

    Imported Print
    Cinematography by Agnès Godard

    After a heart transplant, a man travels the world, from the Alps to Polynesia, in search of new meaning. “Poetic and primal. . . . This mysterious object may be Denis’s most gorgeous film” (Village Voice).

  • The Strange Case of Angelica

    • Friday, July 12 6:30 PM
    Manoel de Oliveira
    Portugal, Spain, France, Brazil, 2010

    Cinematography by Sabine Lancelin

    A young photographer falls in love with a recently deceased beauty in one of Manoel de Oliveira’s final films. “Somewhere between ghost story and fairy tale . . . a beguiling meditation on the ontological and illusionist powers of cinema” (Film Comment).