Nobody shaped Hollywood
genres to his subversive artistic vision as effectively as Alfred Hitchcock,
(1958) is Hitch at his best. James Stewart plays one of his darkest and most
tormented roles as a San Francisco detective racked by both guilt and the title
malady who compounds his troubles by falling in love with a dead woman - and
The films today at the Museum of Fine Arts range from Pop Art to the
Dutch Masters to Japanese anime. They include Esther Robinson's A Walk Into the
Sea: Danny Williams and the Warhol Factory (2009 | 3:30 pm), a documentary
about the iconoclastic '60s artist's forgotten collaborator; Hans Pool and Koos
de Wilt's documentary Views on Vermeer (2009 |5:30 pm), a profile of artists
inspired by the 17th century genius; and Mamoru Hosoda's animated Summer Wars
(2009 | 7 pm), in which a nerdy high school girl is all that stands between
Tokyo and the nefarious Love Machine.
If he's not the best contemporary Chinese
director, he's at least the most controversial. The Museum of Fine Arts'
retrospective of the films of Lou Ye continues with Purple Butterfly (2003), which is set in Shanghai during World War II. A woman is
dismayed when her Japanese lover joins the Imperial Army and her brother is
murdered by Japanese fanatics, so she joins the resistance group of the title,
only to have fate put her loyalties to the test.
French New Wave director Claude Chabrol died a couple of months ago, but
not before compiling an astounding and prolific body of work that people are still
trying to catch up with. Inspector Bellamy (2009) is his last feature, and his only
collaboration with fellow French film icon Gérard Depardieu, who plays a man
whose vacation is disrupted by the arrival of his malicious brother and a
stranger with a noirish tale about murder and insurance fraud.