December at the Austrian Film Museum

 By Rebecca Musgrave

Visitors to the Austrian Film Museum this December can expect an extensive and varied film programme. Featuring the films of Robert Mitchum, the works of Santiago Álvarez and the Marx Brothers the schedule is jam-packed with material from the Museum’s archives.

The cinema of the Austrian Film Museum, located at Augustinerstraße 1 in Vienna, continually attempts to preserve its collection of films whilst also relating them to the public and December appears to be no exception.

The programme begins on 1 December with the screening of the films of Robert Charles Durman Mitchum (1917-97). The museum will pay tribute, in a selection of 30 films, to the actor, who came in at number 23 on the American Film Institute’s list of the greatest male American screen legends of all time. Mitchum is best known for his work in film noir in which, according to film critic Michael Althen, he played all the “losers and loners, hunters and wanderers” of the world. Some of his most famous works include “Pursued or Blood on the Moon”, “The Big Steal” and “River of No Return” with Marilyn Monroe.

The series of films from the man who claimed that “The only difference between me and my fellow actors is that I’ve spent more time in jail”, will run until 6 January 2012.

December will also feature the work of Cuban Pop Art maker, Santiago Álvarez. The Austrian Film Museum has described his films as “loud, exciting, thrilling and disturbing but above all: clear” and will screen a number of his more famous documentaries. The films, which he both wrote and directed, focus on Cuban and American culture and often delve into themes of racism and communism.

The retrospective will consist of 15 short and medium length films that will be screened at the cinema from 14 to 19 December.

The Film Museum traditionally screens the films of the Marx Brothers alongside works by other filmmakers between Christmas and New Year’s Eve. This year cinema goers are asked to consider the Marx brothers in conjunction with the work of Spanish-born filmmaker, Luis Buñuel. The films will include “Viridiana” (1961), “The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie” (1972) and “Diary of a Chambermaid” (1964).

For more information on December’s programme and the film museum visit: