During his most productive years in American cinema, German director Douglas Sirk was derided by critics. Sirk began his work in America with inconsequential crime romances and comedies, but by the 1950s he finally hit his stride. Sirk, though, was a man ahead of his time. Much of his best work consisted of domestic melodramas centering around the decaying lives of the ultra-rich. He was scoffed at for focusing on women, and his films were reductively considered cinema for women, and thus were unimportant. It wasn’t until nearly a decade after his last film that Sirk’s work was reconsidered (first in France), and was found to substantial, emotional deconstructions of those languishing in excess.
To pay proper tribute to Sirk, Film Society Lincoln Center has put together “Imitations Of Life: The Films Of Douglas Sirk,” a retrospective of 25 of his greatest works to run December 23 – January 6 (most of which will thankfully appear in 35mm or 16mm). And to heat things up they have put together a trailer for the series. Consisting of films from all corners of his long career, the folks at the Film Society are touting it as the most “comprehensive Sirk retrospective in decades.”
So, if it’s been awhile since you got a chance to sit down with some of Sirk’s classics (“Magnificent Obsession,” “Written On The Wind,” “All That Heaven Allows”) be sure to snag some tickets. But first, check out the trailer for the event to get a taste of all those melancholic looks and feelings (and Rock Hudson of course). Got a favorite Sirk film? Weigh in in the comments below.