While UB is returning to mostly in-person classes for the fall semester, that’s not happening for the Buffalo Film Seminars, as the popular series will continue with online screenings and Zoom discussions this semester.
Before the pandemic, the series, hosted by UB faculty members Bruce Jackson and Diane Christian, had taken place in the Dipson Amherst Theatre, across Main Street from the UB South Campus. And while the theater is now fully open to the public, the move came too late for the film series. At least for the fall.
The problem, Jackson says, was university logistics. “When we had to pick a location for UB registration several months ago, theaters were not yet fully open and we didn’t know if they would be in the fall,” he recalls. If the series had been scheduled for the theater and capacity remained an issue, there likely only would have been space for students registered for the English department’s “Great Directors” class. And making a late change to the theater if capacity had increased would have caused scheduling conflicts for some students.
And furthermore, “we’d significantly increased the class size for the streaming version because we didn’t have to save seats for everyone else,” Jackson says.
But, he notes encouragingly, “spring is coming!”
The weekly discussions for the 43rd edition of the series will take place via Zoom at 7 p.m. on Tuesdays from Aug. 31 through Nov. 30.
Goldenrod handouts for the coming week’s film will be posted to the series’ website on the Saturday before each Tuesday discussion. Those notices will include links to Vimeo introductions to the film by Jackson and Christian, and to the Tuesday Zoom discussions.
All the films are available on Criterion and/or Amazon Prime — indicated by P and C after the title in the list below. Some of the Amazon Prime films are free with membership; some require a small additional fee.
Seven of the films — the listings are in bold — are available free to anyone with a UB email address via the UB Library’s Kanopy or Swank portals. To access them, go to kreditol.com, enter Kanopy or Swank, then enter the title of the film. They are all available now.
Criterion and Prime both permit one-month trial memberships. Individuals with UB email accounts can watch the films on Sept. 7, 14 and 21 on Criterion; the films on Nov. 9, 16, 23 and 30 on Prime; and the rest through the UB Library.
The fall 2021 schedule, with descriptions culled from the IMDb online movie database and other sources:
Aug. 11: “The Kissing Booth 3,” If you feel like The Kissing Booth 3 was just released, you’re not wrong! The third and final installment of the very cute romantic series finds the characters at Lee and Noah’s family beach home, where they get to live up their final summer together before Elle is forced to decide where she wants to go to school.
Aug. 13: “Free Guy,” Free Guy Eroe per gioco is a 2021 American science fiction action comedy film directed by Shawn Levy from a screenplay by Matt Lieberman and Zak Penn, and a story by Lieberman.
Aug. 18: “Me Contro Te Il Film 2 La Scuola Incantata,” The film, distributed by Warner Bros. Entertainment Italia “Me contro Te Il film 2 Il mistero della scuola incantata” is a 2021 film directed by Gianluca Leuzzi.
Sept. 1: “Shang-Chi e la leggenda dei Dieci Anelli must confront the past he thought he left behind when he is drawn into the web of the mysterious Ten Rings organization.
May. 19: “Fast and Furious 9” With a ninth and tenth film planned since 2014, Lin was confirmed to be directing Fast and Furious 9 in October 2017, returning to the franchise since last directing Fast & Furious 6 (2013). F9 is the first film in the franchise since The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift (2006) not written by Chris Morgan.
Aug. 26: “Candyman (2021) is a 2021 American supernatural slasher film directed by Nia DaCosta and written by Jordan Peele, Win Rosenfeld, and DaCosta. The film is a direct sequel to the 1992 film of the same name and the fourth film in the Candyman film series, based on the short story “The Forbidden” by Clive Barker. The film stars Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, Teyonah Parris, Nathan Stewart-Jarrett, and Colman Domingo. Vanessa Williams, Tony Todd, and Virginia Madsen also briefly reprise their roles from the original film.