MoMA Presents

Peter Bogdanovich’s Squirrels to the Nuts

Mar 28–Apr 5, 2022

MoMA

Squirrels to the Nuts. USA. 2014. Directed by Peter Bogdanovich
  • MoMA, Floor T2/T1 The Debra and Leon Black Family Film Center

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Heavily cut, substantially reshot, and burdened with a painfully explicit voice-over narration, Peter Bogdanovich’s final theatrical feature was released in 2014 under the title She’s Funny That Way and quickly disappeared from view. Miraculously, Bogdanovich’s full original cut, running 123 minutes and titled Squirrels to the Nuts in homage to Ernst Lubitsch’s Cluny Brown, was saved from oblivion by James Kenney, a CUNY English instructor, who discovered a high-definition video master of the Bogdanovich edit on eBay. In its full, free-floating form, Squirrels recovers Bogdanovich’s elegance, airiness, and ability to smoothly manage a large cast of characters, connected here by the divergent needs and fantasies they project on Imogen Poots' Isabella, a Brooklyn sex worker with stage ambitions. At heart the film is a McCareyesque comedy of remarriage, with stage director Owen Wilson fighting through serial infidelities to make it back to his patient wife Kathryn Hahn, who herself is being pursued by scruffy Brit film star Rhys Ifans. But the peripheral characters—including Austin Pendleton as a lovesick judge and Jennifer Aniston as the world’s most indiscreet therapist—leave some darker notes behind.

Organized by Dave Kehr, Curator, and Olivia Priedite, Senior Program Assistant, Department of Film. Special thanks to Peter Tonguette, Louise Stratten, Kelsy Haden, and Oren Segal.

Film at MoMA is made possible by CHANEL.

Additional support is provided by the Annual Film Fund. Leadership support for the Annual Film Fund is provided by Debra and Leon D. Black and by Steven Tisch, with major contributions from The Contemporary Arts Council of The Museum of Modern Art, Jo Carole and Ronald S. Lauder, MoMA’s Wallis Annenberg Fund for Innovation in Contemporary Art through the Annenberg Foundation, the Association of Independent Commercial Producers (AICP), The Junior Associates of The Museum of Modern Art, the Samuel I. Newhouse Foundation, Karen and Gary Winnick, and The Brown Foundation, Inc., of Houston.

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