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Deception Documentary Film Series


  • Film

  • Spring Documentary Series
  • Club B10

“With four entirely different films, our documentary series explores the positives of deception as well as the moral darkness of subterfuge. Nuns wrestle with the ambiguity of deceit fearing that they are headed to Hell as they lie lie lie to save the Jews that they are hiding from the Nazis. Master magicians entertain with their deceitful sleight of hand arms dealers claim to be florists and an art forger acts as a philanthropist — all of these scenarios lead us to question our moral tolerance as we cross the border from beguilement to cardinal sin.” — Rachel Chanoff, series curator

Art and Craft: Thursday, January 22, 7:30pm
My Italian Secret: Thursday, February 12, 7:30pm
The Notorious Mr. Bout: Thursday, March 12, 7:30pm
Deceptive Practice: Thursday, April 9, 7:30pm

An arms-smuggling international super-criminal posing as a florist, a champion cyclist as clandestine Nazi resister, a master art forger who anonymously donates his handiwork to world-class museums, a magician who reveals his tricks (or does he?) Trust no one, good or bad, to be what they seem in our documentary series Deception!

Stay for a Q+A with the filmmaker after each screening.

Thursday, January 22, 7:30pm
Art and Craft follows Mark Landis, one of the most prolific art forgers in US history, as he is exposed and must confront the legacy of his 30-year career.

Thursday, February 12, 7:30pm
Would you risk your life to save a stranger? And never talk about it? My Italian Secret tells the story of sports idol Gino Bartali and other Italians who saved Jews and refugees fleeing the Nazis in World War II.

Thursday, March 12, 7:30pm
Viktor Bout was a Russian entrepreneur a war profiteer an aviation magnate an arms smuggler and strangest of all an amateur filmmaker. Until three days prior to his arrest on charges of conspiring to kill Americans Bout kept the camera running documenting a life spent in the gray areas of international law. With unprecedented access to Bouts home movies and DEA surveillance material gathered during the string operation to bring him down The Notorious Mr. Bout is a portrait of a life much mythologized but little understood.

Thursday, April 9, 7:30pm
What happens when documentary film makers whose mission is to probe, explore, and reveal take as their subject one of the world’s greatest living magicians whose life and art are basically off limits to probing exploration and revelation? More than a decade in the making, Deceptive Practice: The Mysteries and Mentors of Ricky Jay is the captivating result of this curious conundrum: a mesmerizing journey into the world of modern magic and the small circle of eccentrics who were its perpetual devotees.