Anthology Film Archives

MAY 27-JUNE 2

Please scroll all the way down to see all of the offerings we have this week!

• Live screening!: On Thursday, May 28, Anthology collaborates with Screen Slate to present a live online screening of a brand-new work by Ken Jacobs, MOVIE THAT INVITES PAUSING (2020, 24 min, digital), in its online premiere (taking place just three days after Ken’s 87th birthday)! This screening is part of Screen Slate’s new online streaming series Stream Slate, organized in partnership with different artists, venues, and archives. For the event on May 28, Ken Jacobs will participate live, for a Q&A following the screening of the new work, moderated by Anthology’s Archivist, John Klacsmann. Watch at 8:00PM EST at twitch.tv/screenslate.

Ken Jacobs
MOVIE THAT INVITES PAUSING (2020, 24 min, digital)
“Influenced by avantgarde artist-refugees from Europe, non-representational art dominated the art market after WW2 and pictorial comment on social conditions, popular before the war and still vital in some of Picasso’s work, went out of fashion. For the owners threatened by the appeal of socialism, it had become time to change the subject to pure aesthetics: “Rockefeller’s Paintings” one MoMA show advertised. In a society that allows both non-religious and multi-religious thinking and where opposing beliefs can neutralize each other, an openness to new thinking is possible and a great development in the art did take place. I came in after the ascendancy of so-called non-objective painting and joined those exploring imaginary developments in imaginary depth by pigments undisguised as anything other than flat color areas. Viewers offered open minds, picking up on pointed suggestion and discovering the heady adventure of engagement with ambiguity. MOVIE THAT INVITES PAUSING is just such a work in the realm of cinema. It offers no particular path to follow and running time is tentative; for repeat viewings it has none. It becomes a non-objective painting-of-sorts hung in space and I am absolved – you getting this, Hans Hofmann? – for all these years of neglecting canvas for the screen.” –Ken Jacobs, April 2020

The new film will be preceded by a sequence of Jacobs’s recent looping GIF “Eternalisms”.

Extended for one more weekend!: One of the programs that has fallen victim to the pandemic-mandated closure was our spotlight on the work of filmmaker Jessica Sarah Rinland. We intended to host Rinland in person in May, for two programs of her short films, as well as a week-long run of her extraordinary new feature film, THOSE THAT, AT A DISTANCE, RESEMBLE ANOTHER. We’re hopeful that we can host Jessica at Anthology when the time is right, but in the meantime we’re making her work available online. The feature film is no longer available, but we’ve extended the presentation of a single-program selection of the short films through May 31. And as an added bonus, we’ve posted a recording of the live Q&A that Rinland took part in this past Sunday, May 24.

Rinland has made more than a dozen films and installations over the past decade or so, most of which have gravitated around themes relating to the natural sciences, and the intersections between natural, social, and economic histories. Her work has also demonstrated a striking preoccupation with, and sensitivity to, the tactility of surfaces and textures, whether human, animal, organic, or mineral. The single program we’ve created for this online presentation includes five films, including the medium-length BLACK POND, which explores the activity within a common land in the south of England that was previously occupied by the 17th-century agrarian socialists, the Diggers, and is currently inhabited by the Elmbridge Natural History Society.

To watch the short film program, click here. The streaming fee is $8, and $6 for AFA Members (Members, please email hannah@anthologyfilmarchives.org for your promo code). To watch the Q&A, free of charge, click here.

Final week!: Anthology’s ongoing film series, “The Cinema of Gender Transgression,” which explores the ways in which cinema has intersected with the experiences, struggles, and ideas of transgender, non-binary, and gender-nonconforming lives and communities, was supposed to have had its spring installment in mid-May. Given the circumstances, we’ve reconceived the chapter as an online program, via Vimeo-on-Demand. Through Tuesday, June 2, four of the five films will be available to stream, with 50% of the proceeds supporting Anthology.

Curated by Joey Carducci and Angelo Madsen Minax, “The Cinema of Gender Transgression” showcases contemporary films and videos that explore concepts related to gender transgression as well as films that have had historical resonance within and beyond these communities. Throughout the series, guest curators contribute programs as well; for the May installment, filmmaker Devin Utah has selected Brunna Laboissière’s first feature documentary, FABIANA (2018), a portrait of a trans woman truck driver, while filmmaker Frankie Symonds has selected STOP, Jeff Preiss’s epic compilation of 16mm diary footage shot between 1995-2011 and emotionally anchored by his child’s heroically decisive transformation of gender expression. The May chapter also includes Stephen Winter’s deliriously entertaining underground masterpiece, CHOCOLATE BABIES (1997), as well as radical filmmaker Želimir Žilnik’s pioneering work of Serbian queer cinema, MARBLE ASS (1995). The series was also intended to include a 35mm screening of the Michael J. Fox-starring teen classic, TEEN WOLF (1985), which is nothing if not a portrait of identity expression in transformation; that film is available online via several different streaming services.

The streaming fee for each film is $8, and $6 for AFA Members (Members, please email hannah@anthologyfilmarchives.org for your promo code).

• Anthology had planned to host the week-long theatrical premiere run of Cristóbal León and Joaquín Cociña’s THE WOLF HOUSE in April. We do still intend to host a handful of theatrical screenings once Anthology is able to reopen. But meanwhile, thanks to the U.S. distributor, KimStim, and in collaboration with Cinema Tropical, we are presenting a virtual theatrical release of the film. Click here to watch!

Loosely based on the grim case of Colonia Dignidad, a German émigré-run colony in post-WWII Chile that was revealed to have been used to imprison, torture, and murder dissidents during the Pinochet regime, THE WOLF HOUSE is an animated feature film with a much darker foundation than most. As deeply disturbing as its inspiration would suggest, it is also a truly inspired feat of animation, its extraordinary craft and artistic vision fusing with its profoundly sinister themes to create an experience of exceptional power. Using stop-motion animation to unfurl a never-ending series of transformations that play out as a single sequence shot, THE WOLF HOUSE is easily one of the most accomplished, transporting, and conceptually rich animated features to appear in recent memory.

“Astounding…Comparisons with visionary animators like Jan Svankmajer and the Quay Brothers might not be inapt, but they also won’t do the trick – these filmmakers have a perspective and a voice that feels entirely new. The film surprises, with incredible force, in every one of its 75 minutes.” –Glenn Kenny, NEW YORK TIMES

“One of the best films you are likely to see all year.” –Steve Kopian, UNSEEN FILMS

“A stunning, haunting, unforgettable accomplishment.” –Michael O’Sullivan, WASHINGTON POST

As a special bonus, León & Cociña took part in a live online Q&A on May 21, moderated by film critic/writer Carlos Aguilar. A recording of that Q&A is available free of charge here.

• On our Vimeo page you can find the following Jonas Mekas films (for viewing free of charge!): SELF-PORTRAIT (1980, 20 min), RE: MACIUNAS AND FLUXUS (2011, 93 min), KEEP SINGING (2011, 82 min), and HAPPY EASTER RIDE (2012). And Jonas’s classic works WALDEN and LOST LOST LOST are available for online rental via Kino Lorber’s “Kino Marquee” service. The films can be streamed for $9 each, with 50% of the rental income going to Anthology, to help us weather our closure. To access both films, click here.

• One May program that we will most likely not be able to reschedule later in 2020 (both because it was intended to coincide with a particular holiday and for logistical reasons) is our Mother’s Day series, Mother5. Happily, however, three of the five films are available online: Mikio Naruse’s MOTHER (OKAASAN) is on the Criterion Channel; Albert Brooks’s MOTHER is on multiple platforms (Amazon, Google, Tubi, Vudu, and YouTube); and thanks to Magnolia Pictures, we’re able to offer an online streaming engagement of Bong Joon-ho’s MOTHER (MADEO), with 50% of the rental sales benefiting Anthology. To watch the Bong Joon-ho film, click here. (Meanwhile, Vsevolod Pudovkin’s MOTHER / MAT is part of Anthology’s Essential Cinema collection, so it will screen again in the future as part of that cycle.)

• In cooperation with the German film distribution and production company Filmgalerie 451, the Goethe-Institut has launched an online streaming program called Goethe on Demand. As part of this initiative, Anthology will be showcasing several films for our audiences over the coming weeks (free of charge!).

So far we’ve highlighted the films of Roland Klick, in particular SUPERMARKET (1973), as well as Heinz Emigholz’s 2012 film, PARABETON – PIER LUIGI NERVI AND ROMAN CONCRETE. Now we turn the spotlight on the notorious and transgressive German filmmaker, theater director, writer, performance artist, and sometime political candidate, Christoph Schlingensief. Schlingensief was a profoundly uncategorizable artist whose entire body of work constituted in some sense a vast and constantly shape-shifting performance. He fearlessly and tirelessly provoked controversy by transgressing the boundaries of polite society in his explorations of sex, violence, religion, culture, politics, and media. His artistic and performative output took many forms, including theater, opera, television, books, the founding of a political party, and a series of unapologetically over-the-top and confrontational film and video works.

Thanks to Filmgalerie 451 and Goethe on Demand viewers can access one feature film by Schlingensief – THE 120 DAYS OF BOTTROP (1997, 60 min), a typically unrestrained work in which a group of New German Cinema luminaries including Udo Kier, Margit Carstensen, Irm Hermann, and Volker Spengler embark on a remake of Pasolini’s THE 120 DAYS OF SODOM – as well as three documentaries about Schlingensief: FOREIGNERS OUT! SCHLINGENSIEF’S CONTAINER (Paul Poet, 2002, 90 min) and CHANCE 2000 – FAREWELL TO GERMANY (Kathrin Krottenthaler & Frieder Schlaich, 2017, 131 min) chronicle two of Schlingensief’s politically-charged performance projects, while CHRISTOPH SCHLINGENSIEF AND HIS FILMS (Frieder Schlaich, 1968-2004, 76 min) comprises an extended, career-spanning interview with the artist.

To access Schlingensief’s films, click here for instructions and to request a promo code.

Anthology Recommends:
In addition to Anthology’s own online programming initiatives, we heartily recommend the following streaming options that are available throughout the digital realm:

The annual Orphan Film Symposium is taking place through Friday, May 29. This year’s edition has moved online, and is free and open to all! More information is available at https://wp.nyu.edu/orphanfilm, while programs are live-streaming here. Among the many events is a live performance entitled Deliquescence, by Anthology’s own A Clockface Orange (Genevieve HK & Rachael Guma, liquid projection) and Bradley Eros (light), with Lea Bertucci (sound). That program takes place on Thursday, May 28 at 8:30pm EST; click here to watch.

Broadcast: Alternate Meanings in Film and Video, an online exhibition of artists’ films and videos viewable exclusively on gagosian.com, employs the innate immediacy of time-based art to spark reflection on the here and now. Looking to the late 1960s – a historical moment marked by deep uncertainty, social unrest, and radical transformation – Broadcast loosely adopts famed psychologist and countercultural icon Timothy Leary’s mantra “turn on, tune in, drop out” as a guide for negotiating our present moment.

• One of Anthology’s favorite filmmakers, Danny Lyon – the subject of AFA retrospectives in 2008 and 2019, and whose film DEAR MARK we preserved in 2012 – has made the majority of his films available on his website for free! One of the finest and most enterprising of American photographers, and the author of such iconic photo-books as THE BIKERIDERS and THE DESTRUCTION OF LOWER MANHATTAN, Lyon has long devoted himself to chronicling some of the most marginalized and little-understood of American subcultures, from bikers in the Midwest and prison inmates in Texas, to Native-American communities throughout the U.S. His still under-recognized body of film work includes the extraordinary “New Mexico trilogy,” the powerful immigration-themed films EL MOJADO (1974) and EL OTRO LADO (1978), and his trilogy of family films (BORN TO FILM, TWO FATHERS, and the recent CHILDHOOD).

• Dietrich de Velsa’s avant-garde masterpiece of hardcore gay erotic cinema, EQUATION TO AN UNKNOWN (1980) – whose theatrical re-release Anthology hosted last November – is now available for streaming, or for purchase on Blu-ray or DVD (with a wealth of special features), courtesy of film distributor Altered Innocence. Directed by the mysterious Dietrich de Velsa (aka Francis Savel/Frantz Salieri), a painter, owner of one of the first drag cabarets of Paris, and a collaborator of Joseph Losey, EQUATION TO AN UNKNOWN stands as one of the most extraordinary erotic films of all time. Click here for more info.

• Our friends at Spectacle Theater have been presenting a number of live digital streaming events each week. Get your communal microcinema fix on the Spectacle Twitch Stream.

• Our longtime partner and supporter Cinema Tropical has launched the streaming initiatives Tropical on Demand (featuring a selection of films for streaming rental or purchase) and Daily Recommendations (gathering numerous films that are available for free!).

• “Henri” is a new initiative launched by the Cinémathèque française. “Henri” features several rare films from the Cinémathèque’s collection, including works by Anthology favorites such as Jean Epstein and Pierre Clémenti, all available for free streaming!