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World Film Forum

World Film Forum Fall 2013

This November, come to the Lafayette Theater (600 Main Street, Lafayette, IN 47901) and travel with the World Film Forum to Italy, China, and the romantic Western Isles of Scotland. All three films in the Fall 2013 series imagine different kinds of homeward journey, revealing how the magic of the movies can combine dreamscapes with intensified visions of reality.

The World Film Forum presentations will be held free of charge on Nov 5, 12, and 19 at 7:00-9:30 pm. Doors open to the public for free popcorn and cash bar at 6:30. A brief introduction to each film will be given at 7 pm; presenters will lead audience discussion afterwards.

The Fall 2013 series, "Fantasy & Reality: the Magic of the Movies," is generously sponsored by Purdue's Film & Video Studies Program, the Confucius Institute of Purdue, and the School of Languages & Cultures.

For more information, please email the WFF coordinator, Prof. Antonia Syson (

Tuesday November 5, 2013, 7-9:30 pm. 
“Amarcord” (1974, Italy, comedy/drama, 127 minutes, English subtitles). PLEASE NOTE that the MPAA certificate is "R": Children under 17 should attend only with an accompanying parent or adult guardian. This film is not suitable for children.
Presenter: Ben Lawton, Associate Professor of Italian and Film & Video Studies. Additional Sponsorship: Department of Arabic, Classics, Hebrew and Italian.

Federico Fellini is considered by many to be one of the most important directors of all time because of masterpieces such as La Strada, La Dolce Vita, and 8 ½, films in which he revolutionized the language of cinema. The line between fantasy and reality, always blurred in his films, dissolves completely in AMARCORD (“I Remember” in his native dialect), his dreamlike reinvention of several years of his youth, which he somehow manages to compress into one magical year in a series of both humorous and poignant vignettes about coming of age during Mussolini’s Fascist dictatorship in Italy. Fellini’s personages are never-to-be-forgotten caricatures, types, manifestations of some aspect of the human condition, not characters in any traditional sense. As in all his films, he challenges the myths connected with the traditional vision of the family, church, aristocracy, jet set, and, here more than elsewhere, Fascism. The haunting, evocative music is by Nino Rota.

Tuesday November 12, 2013, 7-9:30 pm.
"I Know Where I'm Going!" (dir. Michael Powell & Emeric Pressburger, 1945, UK, drama/comedy, 88 mins). Presenter: Antonia Syson, Assistant Professor of Classics. Additional sponsorship: Program in Classical Studies.

"I've never seen a picture which smelled of the wind and rain in quite this way nor one which so beautifully exploited the kind of scenery people actually live with," wrote Raymond Chandler in a letter of 1950. Martin Scorsese has described his lifelong passion for the stunningly gorgeous and subversive films that Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger made with their production company "The Archers" (most famously The Red Shoes): "I reached the point of thinking there were no more masterpieces to discover, until I saw I Know Where I'm Going!" The film blends the realities of life in the Western Isles during World War II with dreams, legends, and fables, heightened by the expressionist visions of cinematographer Erwin Hillier and by composer Allan Gray's enchanting score. Two travelers, journeying for different reasons towards the same remote Hebridean island, deal with forces that are both benevolent and obstructive: the magical power of wishes and curses, the practical constraints of life in wartime, the unpredictable Scottish weather – and most of all, their own desires.

Tuesday November 19th, 2013, 7-9:30 pm.
"The Road Home" (dir. Yimou Zhang, 1999, China, drama/romance, 89 mins, English subtitles). Presenters: Wei Hong, Professor of Applied Linguistics, with Yuhan Huang and Meng Wang, PhD students in Comparative Literature. Additional sponsorship: Department of East Asian Languages.

In the award-winning film "The Road Home" (original title: "My Father and My Mother"), the remembrance of a life once shared speaks the sweetest language of love. In a small village in Northern China, a young city businessman returns home to attend his father's funeral. He finds that his mother insists on having the traditional burial custom of carrying his father's body back to the village by men instead of in a modern vehicle. The young man recalls the beautiful love story of his parents, explaining how they met and shared their lives together long ago. Director Yimou Zhang shapes this touching film with simplicity and artistry.