The Life and Death of Colonel Blimp (restored 35mm print, 3/12, 7:45pm)

“With every passing interval of time — and that’s what the film is about, after all — it seems to have become more profound. You could say that it’s the epic of an ordinary life. And what you retain from this epic is an overpowering sense of warmth and love and friendship, of shared humor and tenderness, and a lasting impression of the most eloquent sadness.” — Martin Scorsese

Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger’s epic satire still feels (in the best way) like the most British film ever made — a sprawling melange of propriety and profundity, packaged with a Technicolor elegance and bone-dry humor not replicated before or since. Dashing Powell/Pressburger mainstay Roger Livesey plays General Clive Wynne-Candy, in an epic feature-length flashback exploring forty years of his life’s most charged chapters: political and personal intrigues both lofty and cartoonish, along with Zhivago-scale loves and longings. The stunning, incandescent Deborah Kerr (The King And I) plays the multiple roles of the three most impactful women in Candy’s decades-long journey — from feisty neophyte to stiff-upper-lipped WWII vet. Witnessing Kerr’s chameleonic shifting is one of the most delightful elements in a film packed to the brim with cinematic virtuosity: depictions of wartime take on the scope of a funhouse-mirror Eisenstein, while intimate emotional interplays between the film’s love triangle take on the gravity of an eloquent chamber piece. In the hands of Powell & Pressburger, the subjects addressed are elevated to a nuanced, grand and comical symphony — and one that’s a true pleasure to witness. Restored 35mm print!
Dirs. Michael Powell & Emeric Pressburger, 1943, 35mm, 163 min.

Watch Cinefamily’s original trailer for “The Life and Death of Colonel Blimp”!