Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs

The Silver Screen: Approaches to Cinematic Color film series
Friday, February 21, 2014 - 7:00pm

Based on the famous children’s book by Ron and Judi Bartlett, Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs animates the delectable world of Swallow Falls. The film follows the young scientist Flint Lockwood, whose invents a powerful machine that accidentally turns rain into Jell-O and hail into gummy bears.

Featuring the voices of Bill Hader, Anna Faris, and James Caan, Cloudy delivers an edible apocalypse in the hyper-saturated spectrum of three-dimensional digital color. The film’s landscape exploits the synaesthetic power of color to tap into taste and leaves audiences salivating at the prospect of ice cream sundae slopes or hamburger hills and holding their guts as tomato tornadoes wreak repulsive havoc.

(Chris Miller and Phil Lord, 2009, 3-D DCP, 90 min.)

Preceded by short films including Rubber Cement (Robert Breer, 1975, 16mm, 10 min.).

This 2-part series is presented in conjunction with the Department of Cinema and Media Studies 2014 Graduate Student Conference, The Silver Screen: Theories and Histories of Cinematic Color (April 4-5). “Imagine a world alive with incomprehensible objects and shimmering with an endless variety of movement,” Stan Brakhage wrote, “and innumerable gradations of color.” This conference seeks to re-imagine the innumerable gradations of color in the history and theory of cinema. Colors can be “preserved,” “restored,” and “corrected,” but can their cultural meanings? Can we fix color as readily as we can calibrate our television set’s brightness and contrast? After all, color is permanently enmeshed in questions of realism, of spectacle, of film as art and film as industry—questions that this conference regards as catalysts for conversation.

The conference is organized by Hannah Frank (Ph.D. candidate, CMS), Mikki Kressbach (Ph.D. student, CMS), and Zdenko Mandusic (Ph.D. candidate, CMS/Slavic Languages and Literatures), and is co-sponsored by the Department of Cinema and Media Studies, the Franke Institute for the Humanities, the Center for East European and Russian/Eurasian Studies, the Council on Advanced Studies, and the Humanities Division Graduate Student Council.