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October 30, 2020 - 12:00 am to November 5, 2020 - 11:59 pm

UCLA Film & Television Archive is pleased to partner with Arbelos Films to present its new restoration of Béla Tarr’s mid-career masterwork as part of its Virtual Screening Room. Damnation (1988) will be available for streaming through our exclusive link from Friday, October 30 through Thursday, November 5 for $10. A portion supports the Archive’s public programs. Members receive a $2 discount—if you’re not a Member, you can join online today!

Please note: this screening may only be viewed in the U.S.

Damnation (Hungary, 1988)

Co-written by Hungarian director Béla Tarr and novelist László Krasznahorkai, Damnation marked the beginning of an artistic collaboration that would produce some of the most important films of the century’s turn, including Sátántangó (1994), Werckmeister Harmonies (2000) and The Turin Horse (2011). Damnation, unlike those epic works, clocks in at a mere two hours but is no less astonishing for its ambient and aesthetic richness in the service of a pervasive doom. Under the interminable circuit of the industrial cable car that cuts through a stagnating Hungarian company town, a desperate grifter (Miklós Székely B.) hatches a plan to ensnare the husband of his romantic obsession, a cabaret singer (Vali Kerekes), in a smuggling scheme. Spellbinding black and white cinematography, hypnotic tracking shots and minimalist plotting give this allegory of dissolution and disintegration the feel of an exploded film noir.

Damnation has been restored in 4K from the original 35mm camera negative by the Hungarian National Film Institute – Film Archive under the supervision of Béla Tarr.

Black & white, in Hungarian with English subtitles, 120 min. Director: Béla Tarr. Screenwriter: Béla Tarr, László Krasznahorkai. Cast: Vali Kerekes, Miklós Székely B., Gyula Pauer.

Watch a trailer: