Cinematalk Podcast #32: Litza Bixler

Wednesday, March 3rd, 2021
Posted by Jim Healy

As a supplement to the Cinematheque's double feature presentation of The World's End and Metropolis, our special guest on this episode of Cinematalk is Litza Bixler: choreographer, filmmaker, movement director, visual artist and screenwriter. She has produced work on stage, screen, and art galleries and has been a working artist and educator since 1995. Her work in feature films includes contributions to three movies directed by Edgar Wright, Shaun of the Dead (2004), Scott Pilgrim vs. the World (2010, and The World’s End (2013). She also served as choreographer for the 2014 jukebox musical Walking on Sunshine and the 2014 salsa dance comedy Cuban Fury starring Nick Frost, Rashida Jones, and Chris O’Dowd.

Litza Bixler talks with the Cinematheque's Jim Healy about her career journey as an artist, her contributions to the movies of Edgar Wright, the influences of Metropolis, and the collaborative process of filmmaking. 

Bixler is currently Interdisciplinary Artist-in-Residence in UW Madison's Division of the Arts' Interdisciplinary Arts Residency Program. The program brings innovative artists to UW Madison’s campus to teach semester-long, interdepartmental courses and to publicly present their work for campus and community audiences. The program is funded through the university’s Office of the Provost. The spring 2021 Interdisciplinary Arts Residency Program is presented by the UW Madison Division of the Arts and hosted by the Dance Department with Professor Li Chiao-Ping as lead faculty. Co-sponsors include the Art Department and Department of Communication Arts.

Listen to Cinematalk below or subscribe through Apple Podcasts.

Cinematalk Podcast #31: FAUNA, with Nicolas Pereda

Thursday, February 25th, 2021
Posted by Jim Healy

As a listening companion to the LACIS and Cinematheque presentation of Fauna, this episode of Cinematalk features our Mike King in discussion with the movie's writer, director, and editor, Nicolas Pereda. Pereda's work has been the subject of more than 30 retrospectives worldwide in venues such as Anthology Film Archive, Pacific Film Archive, Jeonju International Film Festival and TIFF Cinematheque.  Fauna premiered at the 2020 Toronto Film Festival, and has gone on to play the New York, San Sebastian, and Los Cabos Film Festivals. Listen to Cinematalk below or subscribe to Cinematalk through Apple Podcasts or wherever you get your podcasts. Fauna is presented with the support of UW Madison’s Latin American, Caribbean, and Iberian Studies Program (LACIS).

Cinematalk Podcast #30: A GLITCH IN THE MATRIX, with Rodney Ascher

Thursday, February 4th, 2021
Posted by Jim Healy

Our first episode of Cinematalk for 2021 makes a great supplement to the Cinematheque's showcasing of A Glitch in the Matrix. Glitch director Rodney Ascher talks with the Cinematheque's Jim Healy about how he put his new movie together and simulation theory’s relationship to cinema history and sci-fi literature. Rodney joined us in person at the 2013 Wisconsin Film Festival to present a program of his unique short movies and the Madison Premiere of Room 237, his much-acclaimed exploration of fan theories attempting to decode the hidden meanings of Stanley Kubrick’s The Shining. He spoke with us from his home in Los Angeles during a busy time when his movie has its online premiere and is opening in virtual cinemas around the country. Listen below, or subscribe to Cinematalk through Apple Podcasts or anywhere you get your podcasts.

Cinematalk Podcast #29: DETERMINED

Thursday, December 10th, 2020
Posted by Jim Healy

In conjunction with the Cinematheque's presentation of the powerful new documentary Determined, this episode of Cinematalk features our own Ben Reiser moderating a lively panel of five women who together have spent the past seven years determined to tell the story of Determined. Producers Therese Barry-Tanner, and Eileen Littig, Director Melissa Godoy, Sound person Shawndra Jones, and one of the subjects of the film, Karen McElwee, all sat down to talk with Ben via Zoom for an engaging and informative discussion about the making of this remarkable film.

Listen to this episode of Cinematalk below or subscribe through Apple Podcasts or wherever you get your podcasts.

Cinematalk Podcast #28: THE RABBI GOES WEST, with Amy Geller and Gerald Peary

Thursday, December 10th, 2020
Posted by Jim Healy

As a bonus to the Cinematheque's presentation of The Rabbi Goes West, this episode of Cinematalk features the Cinematheque's Ben Reiser in discussion with the husband and wife filmmaking team behind the compelling new documentary. 

Gerald Peary is the director of the documentary features For the Love of Movies: The Story of American Film Criticism (2009) and Archie's Betty (2015). He also appeared in the cast of Andrew Bujalski’s Computer Chess and he has frequently appeared in person at the Wisconsin Film Festival to present his work. Gerry received a Ph.D. in Communications from the UW Madison in 1977 and in addition to being a filmmaker has had a long career in film criticism and journalism with his work appearing in The Boston Globe, the Los Angeles Times, and many other publications.

Amy Geller’s award-winning productions include PBS's The War That Made America (2005), For the Love of Movies: The Story of American Film Criticism (2009), and The Guys Next Door (2016), which she co-directed. Her work has been broadcast on television and screened at prestigious film festivals around the world. She served as the Artistic Director of the Boston Jewish Film Festival and teaches production courses at Boston University.

Listen to Cinematalk below, or subscribe through Apple podcasts or wherever you get your podcasts.

Cinematalk Podcast #27: RAINING IN THE MOUNTAIN, with David Bordwell

Thursday, December 3rd, 2020
Posted by Jim Healy

This episode of Cinematalk is directly tied to the Cinematheque's presentation of the restored Raining in the Mountain from master filmmaker King Hu. Returning as a guest is David Bordwell, Jacques Ledoux Professor of Film Studies at the University of Wisconsin, Madison. Professor Bordwell has written about King Hu in his books Poetics of Cinema and Planet Hong Kong, both of which you can find at his website,, along with numerous blog posts about King Hu, and a wealth of scholarship covering every corner of cinema. In 2007, he received a special award for excellence in Asian film scholarship from the Hong Kong Film Festival. Listen below or subscribe to Cinematalk through Apple Podcasts.

Cinematalk Podcast #26: THE TWENTIETH CENTURY, with Matthew Rankin

Wednesday, November 25th, 2020
Posted by Jim Healy

As a bonus to the Cinematheque's presentation of The Twentieth Century, Mike King leads a lively conversation with the movie's ingenious creator, Matthew Rankin. Their talk touches on Canadian national identity, the real and fake Mackenzie King, "dollar store" production design, and much more.

The Twentieth Century was an official selection of the 2020 Wisconsin Film Festival and Matthew Rankin's The Tesla World Light screened at the 2018 Wisconsin Film Festival. You can view The Tesla World Light for free here.

Listen below or subscribe to Cinematalk through Apple Podcasts.

Cinematalk Podcast #25: Amos Vogel at Oberhausen, with Tobias Hering

Thursday, November 19th, 2020
Posted by Jim Healy

On a new episode of Cinematalk, presented in tandem with the Cinematheque's free view-at-home tribute to Amos Vogel, Jim Healy speaks with Tobias Hering, an independent curator, researcher and writer based in Berlin who currently directs the "re-selected" project at the International Short Film Festival Oberhausen. This is an ongoing series of programs based on the festival's analogue print collection and paper archives. Hering’s ongoing research around Amos Vogel, focuses on Vogel’s relations to the Oberhausen festival and his role in the advent of a new film and cinema culture in Germany in the 1960's. Hering is also the editor of several anthologies of film writing published in Europe.

The presentation of this program is fully supported by the Consul General of the Federal Republic of Germany in ChicagoSpecial thanks to Consul General Wolfgang Mössinger​ and Philipp von Dreusche. 

Listen below or subscribe to Cinematalk through Apple Podcasts.

Cinematalk Podcast #23: FILMFARSI, with Ehsan Khoshbakht

Thursday, November 12th, 2020
Posted by Jim Healy

In conjunction with the Cinematheque's presentation of Filmfarsi and The Deer, this episode of Cinematalk features filmmaker and curator Ehsan Khoshbakht in conversation with our Mike King. Khoshbakht is the co-director of Il Cinema Ritrovato film festival in Italy and has authored and contributed to numerous books on cinema.  His website, Notes on Cinematograph, can be located here. Listen to Cinematalk below or subscribe through Apple Podcasts.

Cinematalk Podcast #22: IDENTIFYING FEATURES, with Fernanda Valadez & Astrid Rondero

Thursday, November 5th, 2020
Posted by Jim Healy

An informative supplement to the Cinematheque's on-line screening of Identifying Features, this episode features that film's director Fernanda Valadez and her co-screenwriter, co-producer, and co-editor Astrid Rondero. The two filmmakers have been collaborators on a number of short and feature film projects, including The Darkest Days of Us (2017), a movie that marked Rondero’s feature directorial debut. Together, they are the founders of the production companies Enaguas Cine and Corpulenta. During the filmmakers' discussion with the Cinematheque's Director of Programming, Jim Healy, they talk about the real life inspirations for Identifying Features and its complicated production history, as well as their cinematic influences and their hopes for the future. 

Listen to this episode of Cinematalk below, or through Soundcloud, or subscribe through Apple Podcasts.