To coincide with the Wonderland exhibition at the Australian Centre for the Moving Image running in Melbourne from 5 April to 7 October, we are thrilled to have collaborated with ACMI on a dossier focusing on the diversity of film adaptations of Lewis Carroll’s children’s literary classics Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland (1865) and Through the Looking-Glass, and What Alice Found There (1871). Beginning from cinema’s earliest days, Pamela Hutchinson explores early film experiments with Alice including Cecil M. Hepworth’s Alice in Wonderland (1903), Thomas Edison’s Alice in Wonderland (1910) and W.W. Young’s Alice in Wonderland (1915). Dan Golding looks at Bud Pollard’s pre-code Alice in Wonderland (1931) and Alice’s shift to sound, while Joanna Di Mattia examines Norman McLeod’s Alice in Wonderland (1933), which features – amongst other notable curios – an early appearance by Cary Grant. Senses of Cinema editor David Heslin explores the extraordinary puppetry of Lou Bunin in Alice au pays des merveilles (Alice in Wonderland, Dallas Bower & Marc Maurette, 1949). Nadia Buick considers the donation of Disney’s 1951 vision of Alice and her influence on fashion in the shape of the ‘little blue dress’, and Michelle J. Smith turns to the United Kingdom to focus on Jonathan Miller’s television movie Alice in Wonderland from 1966, boasting a cast including Peter Cooke and Peter Sellers. Kat Ellinger takes a trip into the world of psychedelic Alice in the anti-drug educational films Alice in Acidland (1969) and Curious Alice (1968), while Samm Deighan reflects on Francesco Barilli’s Alice-inspired Italian giallo Il profumo della signora in nero (The Perfume of the Lady in Black, 1974). Maintaining this interest in more adult Alices, Justine Smith discusses Alice in Wonderland: An X-Rated Musical Comedy (Bud Townsend, 1976), while Darragh O’Donoghue looks at Alice’s influence on two films from 1977, Claude Chabrol’s Alice ou la dernière fugue (Alice or the Last Escapade) and Stephen Dwoskin’s The Silent Cry. Looking towards more contemporary interpretations of Alice, David Surman looks at the influence of Carroll on Takashi Murakami’s Superflat Monogram (Mamoru Hosoda, 2003) while Anton Bitel dives into the Japanese Gothic Lolita fantasy world of Terashima Mari’s Alice in the Underworld: The Dark Märchen Show!! (2009). Senses of Cinema editor Alexandra Heller-Nicholas maintains this interest in the gothic with her reflection on what might have been in Marilyn Manson’s unmade Alice project Phantasmagoria: The Visions of Lewis Carroll, and we revisit Dirk de Bruyn’s 2002 article on Jan Švankmajer’s Něco z Alenky (1988), “Chasing Rabbits out of the Hat and into the SHEDding of Childhood: Alice”.

Our second dossier this issue treats the relationship between cinema and the contemporary art museum. In the last two decades, cinema-related exhibitions and installations have experienced a boom, and this dossier looks into this phenomenon, as some of the world’s most prominent filmmakers have taken to showing their work in gallery settings, with markedly different viewing conditions (and economic realities) from what prevails in the traditional cinema environment. Two of the foremost scholars in film studies, Thomas Elsaesser and Raymond Bellour, offer duelling overviews of the cinema’s entry into the museum, while a further three articles take on specific case studies of moving image art and its relationship with the museum: Catherine Fowler on Albanian artist Anri Sala’s sound work, Kate Warren on the Franco-Lebanese couple Joana Hadjithomas/Khalil Joreige, and Alex Munt on Alexander Sokurov’s Louvre-film Francofonia.

In our features section this issue, we include a range of interviews and articles from around the globe. Jytte Holmqvist catches up with the prolific veteran Catalan filmmaker Ventura Pons, and we have interviews with filmmakers from the Americas: Kristy Matheson interviews Mexican filmmaker Amat Escalante about his filmography (including 2013’s Heli and 2016’s The Untamed),Brigitta Wagner interviews young New York-based directors Ted Fendt and Ricky D’Ambrose and their producer Graham Swindoll at the Berlinale’s Forum, while Thomas Austin interviews filmmaker, academic, and critic John Gianvito. Peter Verstraten investigates the generic and linguistic specificities in the crime dramas of Michaël R. Roskam, Jennifer Ruth tackles representations of poverty and economic bounty in Tom Ford’s Nocturnal Animals and Joanna Di Mattia explores the sensual world of Luca Guadagnino’s Desire Trilogy with Call Me By Your Name, I Am Love and A Bigger Splash. An essential addition to our ever-growing Great Directors database is also included in this issue as Gwendolyn Audrey Foster explores the work of Chantal Akerman, and, in our annotations that coincide with upcoming screenings for Melbourne Cinémathèque, we focus on films by directors including John Cassavetes, José Ramón Larraz, François Truffaut, Jacqueline Audry and Thom Andersen, and others starring acting luminaries such as Montgomery Clift and Kinuyo Tanaka.

Festival coverage includes Bérénice Reynaud on AFI FEST / American Film Market in Los Angeles, Marco Abel on Berlin, Tara Judah on Rotterdam, Charles Fairbanks on Ânûû-rû Âboro in New Caledonia, Leonardo Goi on Tallinn Black Nights and Parichay Patra on the International Film Festival of India in Goa and Experimenta in Bangalore. And our book reviews section offers critical responses to Paul Douglas Grant’s Cinéma militant, Alison Taylor’s Troubled Everyday, Michael Cramer’s Utopian Television, Alain Bergala’s The Cinema Hypothesis, Igor Krstic’s Slums on Screen, and Lost Girls: Jean Rollin, an anthology of woman writers tackling the work of the French schlock maestro.  

And it is with a heavy heart that we say farewell to Alexandra Heller-Nicholas, who has been such an incredible part of the Senses of Cinema editorial team. Her tireless work and enthusiasm has been an instrumental part of the success of this journal. She leaves us to head into a new chapter in her career of writing and research, and we wish her well, and thank her for all of her work for Senses of Cinema. From all of us at Senses, and on the behalf of all of the writers that you’ve worked with, we thank you. But as sad as it is to say farewell to Alex, we do have the absolute pleasure of welcoming César Albarrán Torres to the editorial team. César has a wealth of experience in writing, research and publication, and has already brought a fantastic new energy and an exciting new perspective to the editorial team. So farewell and good luck Alex, and welcome to the Senses of Cinema team César!

Finally, in this issue, we are thrilled to announce the inaugural Senses of Cinema-Monash Essay Prize awarded to the best published work in 2017 by an Australian contributor. Congratulations to our winner Joanna Di Mattia for her fabulous Great Directors profile on filmmaker Terence Davies published in Issue #84. Congratulations also to runner-up Blythe Worthy for her article, ‘Questioning the “Strong Female Character”: Gillian Armstrong’s High Tide (1987)‘ published in Issue #83. Once again, congratulations Blythe for this engaging essay on such an important Australian film and director! You can read more about our Essay Prize here.

– the editors

 

Thank you to our Patreon supporters who have pledged a monthly USD$10 or above to supporting Senses of Cinema:

Laura
Walde
Aditya
Shekhar
Howard
Mandelbaum
Ed
Rhodes
Wordy
Max
Shmorhun
David
Donaldson
Tom
Ross
Michael
Shields
Wheeler
Winston Dixon
Sally
Jackson
James
Hashimoto
Brandi
Cryer
Barbara
Paterson
Norm
Sloan
Laura
Napolitano
Avrom
Robin
Guy
Ratki
Stephen
Olszewski
Afshin
Forghani
Rhian
Hinkley
Kevin
Brianton
Jennifer
Sabine
Anwen
Crawford
Joan
Dwyer
John
Dwyer
Grazyna
Krezlewska
Iona
Goodwin
Peter
Maxwell
Lawrence
Soria
Yvette
Giles
Javier
Cerame
Sascha
Westphal
Joe
Ben
Ferris
Sam
Crisp
James
D George
Michael
Suarez
Rhiannon
Dalglish
Tessa
Dwyer