Catching Up: Great Films from Our Year Without the Big Screen
May 12–June 10, 2021
“I’ve seen a lot of folks erroneously refer to our pandemic year as the ‘Year Without Movies.’ I think if anything, the 100+ films we played on the JBFC Virtual Marquee since March 2020 proves that to be a bit of a misnomer. But while we certainly had plenty of new films to screen during lockdown, what we didn’t have was a communal place to watch them together. Indeed, our pandemic year was the ‘Year Without the Big Screen.’
One of the things our time apart has solidified is that there will never, ever, be a proper substitute for the Big Screen. Nothing can take the place of viewing a great film for the first time together with an audience of like-minded cinephiles on a giant screen, in a darkened theater, with a powerful sound system all around you. While virtual cinema was (and still is) a great way for audiences to see new films and restored classics, we know a lot of the titles that have graced our Virtual Marquee in the past year would’ve made for memorable in-theater experiences as well. That’s why we’re so happy to resurrect an old series, Catching Up, and repurpose it here as a way to offer our audience the chance to watch a curated selection of great films we didn’t get an opportunity to show on our screens during this year-long closure.
Some of the films in this lineup are titles we played virtually, but some are films we couldn’t screen on our Virtual Marquee at all when they were released. There are new films, restored repertory titles, and selections that have or would have played in several of our ongoing series, including REMIX, Global Watch, and Retro Revival. There are documentaries and narratives, films from big-name directors like Spike Lee and Wong Kar-wai, breakthrough features from incredible up-and-coming talents like Garrett Bradley and Lemohang Jeremiah Mosese, and even one semi-unclassifiable film about a dive bar that continues to warm my heart almost a year after seeing it for the first time.
My film programming colleagues and I are thrilled to once again curate film selections and series for our community, and we’re so excited to have you join us over the next four weeks as we play a little bit of catch-up.” —Andrew Jupin, Senior Film Programmer