Andrew Garfield, Mahershala Ali, Ruth Negga, and five others received their first-ever acting nominations for 2017. While these actors are new to the Academy Awards, you may recognize them from their earlier work.
"Another Sky" is practically a lost film. Hardly shown when completed in 1954 (the producer, who had commissioned the film with a budget of 25,000 British pounds, died immediately after it was completed), it establishes Lambert as a genuine auteur -- who never made another film. I can think of only two other such cases, Charles Laughton, with the amazing "Night of the Hunter," and Leonard Kastle, with the equally stunning "Honeymoon Killers." Clearly none of these three men had the will (or interest, or nerve?) to continue on the arduous road, but all three had a marked sense of the poetic possibilities of cinema. What's striking in all three cases is that this poetic sensibility is not at the expense of strong story-telling. Personally, I think "Night of the Hunter" -- despite its high reputation -- can never really be rated high enough -- its achievement is so uniquely rich. (It seems that most IMDb users look at it as a superior thriller -- hardly, in my opinion, its great strength.) "Honeymoon Killers," too, is a great deal more than a ripping yarn -- but I digress. "Another Sky" deserves to be seen: the strange and magnetic pull of Morocco -- so often and lovingly evoked by Paul Bowles -- is shown here in all its strange destructiveness. Beautiful performances by a mostly unknown cast (though the villain of the piece is played by Catherine Lacey, whose immortality is assured through her playing of the "nun" in Hitchcock's "The Lady Vanishes," here seen 20 years later and much the worse for wear), including many non-professional Moroccans. An interesting and haunting music score, as well, European orchestral music (it reminds me of Peggy Glanville-Hicks's music) as scoring, alternating with a good deal of Moroccan indigenous music. A hidden treasure, brought to light and lovingly restored by Facets Video (who claim to have removed over a million imperfections in the print! it does look very fine). Extras of not much interest.
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