Join us every Wednesday night in June, as we continue our weekly film series, curated by award-winning filmmaker Steve Elkins. This months films span diverse thematic territory, from a punk cat in space to microorganisms to fishing trips with Tom Waits to Samoan gangs in Long Beach. Each screening starts at 7:30 and is FREE of charge. See you at the gallery!
Wednesday, June 4th: Tamala 2010: A Punk Cat in Space (Japan, 2002).
Imagine a film that's equal parts Hello Kitty, Philip K. Dick, and David Lynch--add a healthy dose of punk 'rude, intergalactic futurism, and out-for-blood cultural satire--stir in a plot inspired in part by Thomas Pynchon's "The Crying of Lot 49," and whatever you've got in your head isn't 1/4th as crazy as Tamala 2010. Cigarette smoking', kickass kitty Tamala extends the proverbial feline finger to her corporation-commanded hometown and its nomadic robot Colonel Sanders. Despite the wishes of her human foster mother (who perpetually plays video games in the nude with a giant snake wrapped around her), Tamala takes off in a personal spaceship bound for her birth planet, only to unravel ties between herself, an ancient cult, and the postal service megaconglomerate Catty & Co. -- Except it's a whole lot weirder than that. Crafted by a mysterious duo known as T.O.L. (Trees of Life), Tamala still stands today as a beacon of how far the boundaries for features animation can be pushed (and a reminder of how little they have been).
Wednesday, June 11th: "The Avant-Garde Science Films Of Jean Painlevé,” Scored By Yo La Tengo (France, 1920s - 1970s)
Building his own custom technology to expand human vision, Jean Painlevé forged a pioneering body of over two hundred visually revelatory experimental films (on subjects ranging from liquid crystals to sea urchins) that made significant scientific discoveries, falsifying previous research and accepted knowledge about the world. Situated squarely in the middle of debates over whether cinema is science or art, Painlevé turned from an assured career in formal academic research to film, racecar driving, and Surrealism, working with Man Ray, Dali, Bunuel, Jacques Cousteau, and countless other luminaries of French art. We will screen a number of Painlevé's films with new scores by Yo La Tengo, which blur the boundaries between poetry and science, and philosophically challenge the role and place of humans in the world.
Wednesday, June 18th: “Fishing With John (USA, 1991)
With the possible exception of Twin Peaks, "Fishing With John" is arguably the greatest (and most hilarious!) TV show of all time. In each episode, John Lurie takes a different celebrity fishing abroad (Tom Waits in Jamaica, squid-hunting with Dennis Hopper in Thailand, ice-fishing with Willem Defoe in Maine, etc), though the show is really about extreme boredom and people who don't know a damn thing about fishing. Join us for our marathon resurrection of a show so good that the network had to pull the plug before it even got through its first season.
Wednesday, June 25th: "My Crasy Life" (Long Beach and Samoa, 1992)
After making anarchic and radical political films with Jean-Luc Godard throughout the 1970s, French filmmaker Jean-Pierre Gorin made this stunning documentary about Samoan gangs in Long Beach. We will also discuss the work of punk filmmaker Allison Anders who released a film with the same title two years later, about Chicano girl gangs in Echo Park, Los Angeles.