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Keyframe Spotlight: Two Weeks In the City of Cinema Guild

Essays, interviews, videos and other features spotlighting a distributor of stellar films.

"In the City of Sylvia" is just one of several outstanding recent titles from Cinema Guild.

"In the City of Sylvia" is just one of several outstanding recent films from Cinema Guild.

Being a dedicated film-goer in New York City throughout the 2000s, I thought I knew all of the key distributon companies of the specialty arthouse films I faithfully followed. So when I made my year-end top ten list for 2009, I was startled to find that three films on my list – Beeswax, 35 Shots of Rum, and 24 City – were all distributed by a company I had never heard of: The Cinema Guild. In 2010 they followed up by releasing my #1 film for that year, Everyone Else. Again, I wondered, who were these guys, and how did they come from out of nowhere to carry so many of my favorite new films?

I was surprised to learn that the company wasn’t a young upstart but had been established since 1968, founded by Philip and Mary-Ann Hobel, producers of several documentaries and features, including the Oscar-winning Robert Duvall vehicle Tender Mercies. In recent years, under the operational guidance of Ryan Krivoshey, the company has experienced something of a revival, steadily increasing its acquisitions of worthy international and American independent films from some of the most intriguing filmmakers working today. The results speak for themselves; at least they’ve made their impact known on my annual top ten lists.

So I am pleased and honored to dedicate this week and next to a fortnight of coverage on Cinema Guild. Each day Keyframe will post essays, interviews, videos and other features related to films from this stellar label. I hope this content will offer you the same sensations of delight and discovery that I had when I first encountered the films of Cinema Guild. Best of all, you can watch the films here on Fandor – click on any of the titles to the left.

FEATURE INDEX (to be updated throughout the two-week Cinema Guild fortnight):

When You’re Agnes Varda, Life’s a Beach (of Your Own Making)

Essential Images: Finding Beauty “In the City of Sylvia”

German Precision in a World Gone Haywire: The Films of Christian Petzold

Mixing and Manipulating China’s History: Jia Zhangke’s “24 City”

Musings on the Muse: The Actress as Inspiration in “À tout de suite”

A Lifetime of Images at Play on “The Beaches of Agnes”

Bringing New Life to Arthouse Films: Interview with Cinema Guild’s Ryan Krivoshey

Watching The Movies That Watch Us, From “Sherlock Jr.” to “Shirin”

The Social Network: Talking Beeswax

Essential Timecode: The Painterly Beauty of “Eccentricities of a Blonde Haired Girl”

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