Alan Cumming’s Adventures in Moviegoing

Alan Cumming’s Adventures in Moviegoing

16 Episodes

Tony-winning actor, director, activist, and bon vivant Alan Cumming is known for both his chameleonic performances (this is a man, after all, who has played every role in “Macbeth”) and charmingly irreverent wit. In this edition of Adventures in Moviegoing, the stage and screen star sits down with Criterion president Peter Becker to discuss everything from Scottish-cinema rarities to the reasons why he’s decidedly antiauteurist to the films he loves dearly. The selections he’s chosen—including Orson Welles’s trickster metadocumentary F FOR FAKE, Charlie Chaplin’s audacious political satire THE GREAT DICTATOR, and Volker Schlöndorff’s surreal antiwar statement THE TIN DRUM—display the same slyly subversive spirit he brings to his own work.

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Alan Cumming’s Adventures in Moviegoing
  • Alan Cumming in Conversation

    Episode 1

    Scottish Renaissance man Alan Cumming discusses the differences between actors and movie stars, the Scottish films he loves, and more.

  • Alan Cumming on THE GREAT DICTATOR

    Episode 2

  • The Great Dictator

    Episode 3

    Directed by Charles Chaplin • 1940 • United States

    In his controversial masterpiece THE GREAT DICTATOR, Charlie Chaplin offers both a cutting caricature of Adolf Hitler and a sly tweaking of his own comic persona. Chaplin, in his first pure talkie, brings his sublime physicality to two roles: ...

  • Alan Cumming on BRIEF ENCOUNTER

    Episode 4

  • Brief Encounter

    Episode 5

    Directed by David Lean • 1945 • United Kingdom

    After a chance meeting on a train platform, a married doctor (Trevor Howard) and a suburban housewife (Celia Johnson) begin a muted but passionate, and ultimately doomed, love affair. With its evocatively fog-enshrouded setting, swooning Rachmanin...

  • Alan Cumming on I KNOW WHERE I’M GOING!

    Episode 6

  • I Know Where I’m Going!

    Episode 7

    Directed by Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger • 1945 • United Kingdom

    In Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger's stunningly photographed comedy, romance flourishes in an unlikely place, the bleak and moody Scottish Hebrides. Wendy Hiller stars as a headstrong young woman who travels to these...

  • Alan Cumming on HAROLD AND MAUDE

    Episode 8

  • Harold and Maude

    Episode 9

    Directed by Hal Ashby • 1971 • United States
    Starring Ruth Gordon, Bud Cort

    With the idiosyncratic American fable HAROLD AND MAUDE, countercultural director Hal Ashby fashioned what would become the cult classic of its era. Working from a script by Colin Higgins, Ashby tells the story of the ...

  • Alan Cumming on F FOR FAKE

    Episode 10

  • F for Fake

    Episode 11

    Directed by Orson Welles • 1975 • France, Iran, Germany

    Trickery. Deceit. Magic. In F for Fake, a free-form sort-of documentary by Orson Welles, the legendary filmmaker (and self-described charlatan) gleefully reengages with the central preoccupation of his career: the tenuous lines between il...

  • Alan Cumming on THE TIN DRUM

    Episode 12

  • The Tin Drum

    Episode 13

    Directed by Volker Schlöndorff • 1979 • Germany

    Oskar is born in Germany in 1924 with an advanced intellect. Repulsed by the hypocrisy of adults and the irresponsibility of society, he refuses to grow older after his third birthday. While the chaotic world around him careens toward the madness...

  • Alan Cumming on THE LONELY PASSION OF JUDITH HEARNE

    Episode 14

  • The Lonely Passion of Judith Hearne

    Episode 15

    Directed by Jack Clayton • 1987 • United Kingdom

    Maggie Smith plays an older woman who begins to lose her faith in the church as the loneliness of her existence comes to bear.

  • Alan Cumming’s Adventures in Moviegoing Teaser

    Episode 16