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Los tallos amargos

(The Bitter Stems)
Argentina 1956. Dir: Fernando Ayala. 88 min. 35mm

NEW, RESTORED 35mm PRINT! A sensational rediscovery! Argentinian director Fernando Ayala’s 1956 film noir, brilliantly photographed and boldly told, was thought lost until a negative was found in a basement in 2014. Probing into the darkest corners of the human psyche, its tale of guilt, paranoia, and murder has a down-on-his luck Buenos Aires journalist partnering with a canny Hungarian immigrant on a correspondence-school scam. The Expressionist visuals, including a Spellbound-like dream sequence, are by Ricardo Younis, a student of Citizen Kane cameraman Gregg Toland. The movie, winner of Argentina’s Oscars for best film and director, was named one of the “best-shot films of all-time” by American Cinematographer magazine. The notable score is by nuevo tango pioneer Astor Piazzolla. “Simply one of the finest noir-drenched crime films of the 1950s (and maybe ever)” (Museum of Modern Art, New York). Preservation funded by the Film Noir Foundation.