Program Notes

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From the Film Vault Blog

Program Notes: Letter from an Unknown Woman (1948)

Letter from an Unknown Woman movie poster

Possibly the most European film ever made by an American studio, Letter from an Unknown Woman is a simple story that achieves astonishing complexity thanks to two terrific lead performances and the direction of Max Ophüls.

Program Notes: Ride with the Devil (1999)

Ride with the Devil movie poster

Ang Lee’s Ride with the Devil is an astonishingly accurate recreation of the chaos of the Kansas-Missouri border war, a fiercely partisan conflict of ambushes, lynchings, robberies and ruthless extermination.

Program Notes: The Apartment (1960)

The Apartment movie poster

More than a half-century ago, Fred MacMurray was stopped in the street by a woman who berated him for appearing in a “dirty movie.” The movie was The Apartment, which would go on to win Academy Awards for picture, director, screenplay, editing, and art design.

Program Notes: Quantrill’s Raiders (1958)

Quantrill’s Raiders movie poster

Quantrill’s Raiders is filled with howling historical inaccuracies. It's basically an outlaw movie, a standard-issue studio Western. We’re talking a B movie with B movie writing, B movie acting, and B movie action.

Program Notes: Stairway to Heaven (1946)

Stairway to Heaven movie poster

Stairway to Heaven is a romantic fable of such visual, verbal and emotional resourcefulness that one is hard pressed to think of another title that even comes close to its sublime satisfactions.