Here’s a treat this week: Thelma Schoonmaker, longtime film editor of Martin Scorsese (and an Oscar winner for “The Departed,” “The Aviator,” and “Raging Bull”) will be at Seattle Art Museum Thursday and Friday to present two films by her late husband, Michael Powell. “A Matter of Life and Death” (formerly titled “Stairway to Heaven,” and released in 1946) was Powell’s favorite of his many films (which include “The Red Shoes” and “Black Narcissus”); it stars David Niven as a wartime pilot undergoing a celestial trial. 1950’s “Gone to Earth,” shot in Wales (where Powell’s parents grew up), features Jennifer Jones as a Welsh country girl of Gypsy ancestry who marries a clergyman but is drawn to a fox-hunting squire. Schoonmaker will introduce both films and answer questions afterwards; she’s sure to have some wonderful stories. (I’ve had the pleasure of interviewing her several times, most notably in 2005, when she talked about “The Aviator” and her career with Scorsese, and again in 2010, to discuss the restoration of “The Red Shoes.”)
“A Matter of Life and Death” screens at 7:30 p.m. Thursday; “Gone to Earth” at 7:30 p.m. Friday, both at SAM’s Plestcheeff Auditorium. Tickets are $18 for both films ($14 for SAM, SIFF, NWFF and TheFilmSchool members) and available at the door or through SAM’s website. Single tickets are $10 at the door, day of show only.
Jennifer Jones and Michael Powell, on the Welsh set of “Gone to Earth.” (Photo courtesy of the Estate of Michael Powell.)