HOUSEHOLD SAINTS (Restoration) – Review by Maitland McDonagh

Revisiting Nancy Savoca’s Household Saints, based on the novel Francine Prose novel about generations of a family in New York’s Little Italy, leaves me in a bad position. First and foremost, I’m not Italian — but to be fair, the Irish aren’t so far removed culturally, starting with the ethos of family before all; as everyone and his brother says, “Irish and the Italians, cut from the same cloth.” And I’ll go along with that except to say that Irish-Americans cut their straying progeny a bit more slack because… Irish. The larger issue for me is the film’s status, starting with lack of inclusion on The New York Times list of best films of 1993. Yes, there were bigger and better publicized movies, but Household Saints’ quiet exploration of what it meant to be a young woman coming of age in an old-school neighborhood tucked into a city in a constant state of reinvention remains sharp, subtle and thoroughly engaging.

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THE GREEN YEARS – Review by Diane Carson

A bonus of enjoying restorations is discovering previously unfamiliar directors and their work. That’s the case with Portuguese director Paulo Rocha whose 1963 The Green Years didn’t receive a U.S. release. Now available, Rocha’s debut film takes its place among new wave gems shot on location, in beautiful black and white, following its protagonist through coming-of-age romantic experiences.

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THOUSAND PIECES OF GOLD – Review by Diane Carson

Originally released in 1991 and recently restored, Thousand Pieces of Gold presents a refreshing perspective on the story of a Mongolian girl sold as a bride in 1880s Oregon and is admirable in its assertion of female agency, but the story feels sentimental, safe and predictable, especially post HBO’s Deadwood and other revisionist westerns.

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