Master Class w/ John Sayles + City of Hope

General Admission Tickets include entry to the Master Class & film, VIP tickets include reserved couch seating and entry to a private reception with John Sayles prior to the program, at 1:15pm

Moderated by Oscar Nominated Screenwriter Josh Olson

John Sayles—the Godfather of Bootstrap Cinema, the original DIY filmmaker—was at the forefront of the modern independent cinema movement, when in 1979 with only $40,000 he made Return of the Secaucus Seven. A screenwriter, director, actor, editor, and producer, Sayles does it all—even a few soundtracks. If he is not making a film, then he is writing novels. If he is not writing novels, then he is writing short stories.

John has stories to tell. In this Master Class presented in partnership with the Writers Guild Foundation, he will share some of those stories and will inspire you to get out there and share your own. After the discussion, we invite you to stay for a screening of John’s digitally remastered classic City of Hope.

The Writers Guild Foundation promotes and preserves the craft, history, and voices of screen storytelling. Join us and your favorite screenwriters at this year’s WGFestival 2016, where you can learn the art, craft, and business of screenwriting. For information about the WGFestival, click here.

City of Hope

City of Hope has been restored by Sony Pictures Entertainment in conjunction with the Sundance Institute Collection at the UCLA Film & Television Archive.

Welcome to John Sayles’ America. In this sprawling, kaleidoscopic view of an American city, City of Hope interweaves multiple narratives to examine political corruption, institutional failure, urban development, police brutality, and the ever-widening racial and economic divide of its inhabitants. Roger Ebert compared the film to Slacker, pointing out the shared affinity for weaving characters and places together, an observant camera straying across different conversations within the same scene, making us the eavesdropper on the urban landscape. The city, then, becomes the connecting tissue; it’s a living, breathing thing; it pulsates and it consumes. It’s about people’s complaisance to the institutions they serve. Yet, this is also a film about the individual. While initially dismissed by some critics as hopeless, Sayles has since noted that “the movie is pessimistic, but it’s not cynical.” This is an angry film that asks hard questions without providing easy answers; a film about compassion, hope and the small possibility of reform that exists within a rigged system.

Dir John Sayles, 1991, DCP, 129 min.

Watch the Cinefamily original trailer!