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Indepth Arts News:

"Kubrick at MoMA: A Gift Revisited"
1999-07-06 until 1999-07-11
Museum of Modern Art
New York, NY, USA United States of America

In 1965, Stanley Kubrick, with the assistance of various Hollywood studios, donated to The Museum of Modern Art 35mm prints of five of his feature films--The Killing (1956), Paths of Glory (1957), Spartacus (1960), Lolita (1962), and Dr. Strangelove: Or, How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb (1964). His gift was remarkable both for its extensiveness and for the fact that, during the 1960s, filmmakers rarely gave their works to archives. These five films constitute the first decade of one of the greatest careers in film, and MoMA remains enormously proud to have received such an important gift for its collection. In tribute to the artist, who died at the age of seventy on March 7, 1999, and in remembrance of his generosity, the Museum will screen these works in the program Kubrick at MoMA: A Gift Revisited from July 6 to 11.

Born in The Bronx in 1928, Stanley Kubrick was hired as a photographer by Look magazine while still a teenager. He turned to filmmaking in the early 1950s, directing three nonfiction shorts, followed by the features Fear and Desire (1953) and Killers Kiss (1955). But it was The Killing, with its startlingly new treatment of the crime caper, that established him as a major talent. Each of his subsequent films was eagerly anticipated, by critics and audiences alike, and Kubrick never disappointed through the nine motion pictures that followed over the next four decades. His final film, Eyes Wide Shut (1999), opens in theaters July 16.

Kubrick proved his virtuosity with the five films that he made from the mid-1950s to the mid-1960s, notes Mary Lea Bandy, Chief Curator, Department of Film and Video, who organized the series. These works represent an incredible variety of genres: The Killing is a film noir, Paths of Glory a war movie, Spartacus is a sweeping historical epic, Lolita adapts a contemporary literary masterpiece, and Dr. Strangelove satirizes the Cold War. In each of them he took on an established form and made it his own.

In addition to screening the original release version of Spartacus that Kubrick and Universal Pictures donated to the Museum in 1965, Kubrick at MoMA: A Gift Revisited will also present the 1991 restoration of the film, which includes additional footage of Laurence Olivier and Tony Curtis that had been cut by the studio.

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