SPRING 2009 → AUTUMN 2010 Season (Part.3)

ABC Gallery : 127 Campbell Street Collingwood

4th March : AmeriKKKa

“The Intruder” – Roger Corman 1961

Cormans’ only “serious” film and William Shatners’ screen debut gives a rare glimpse into the artistic heights that both could have continued on if this film hadn’t been a box office flop. Shatner is electrifying as a White Supremacist provocateur stirring a Pro-Segregationist Southern township into violence against a state enforced, integrated education system. A tense and ugly vision of mob psychology, as well as the demagogues who put it to effect.. What makes this film completely unique is the usage of an actual small town community in minor roles and as Extras. Whilst keeping the actual storyline secret its’ clandestine intentions were eventually discovered, which nearly got the film crew lynched as well.

………..Preceded by

“Coal Black and the Sebben Dwarves” – Bob Clampett 1941

One of 11 forbidden cartoons produced by the “A-List” animation studios in America, all banned for racist stereotyping. “Coal Black” is the most hotly debated animation of the lot because of the conflicting forces at work upon it, and its perceived artistic merit. A parody of Disneys’ “Snow White”, Clampett intended the film to affectionately showcase the vitality of the black Jazz scene, even employing band members to write the lyrical content. Ultimately on the drawing board he resorted to typically mocking portrayals of Black men and saucy portrayals of Black women. Its a guilty laugh for black and white people at best, offensive at worst. What the film does do is give a clear picture of what were typical White perceptions of Black people during the 40’s. Enough said.

11th March: Weird Science

Inhaling the Spore – Leonard Feinstein (2004)

A journey into the “Museum of Jurassic Technology” in Los Angeles which specialises in the shaky edges of natural history and poetically plays with the belief mechanisms of the Museum goers…

The Way Things Go – Fischli and Weiss (1987)

50% Art / 50% High School Chemistry lab, 30 minutes of perpetual chain reaction. Improvised and cobbled together with household materials and formulated during a year of painful trial and error.

Experiments in the Revival of Organisms (1940)

Shocking experiments in the resuscitation of a dogs head as performed by the Soviet inventor of the iron lung. Its a testimony to scientific perversity as well as a bizarre example of technological success being employed as propaganda. Ineptly whitewashing its morbidity with a fictitious happy ending simply doesn’t wash. (Warning this film may be extremely disturbing)

Le Vampire & Secret Love Life of the Octopus – Jean Painleve 1945 / 1967

Two films by the first great (and little known) Oceanographic artist / film-maker. The strength of these two films is in the highly excited and poetic manner in which he treats the subject of these two subjects; Octopus sex and Vampire Bats.

18th March :  Heart of a Dog

Vladimir Bortko 1988

To follow on from last weeks portrayal of resuscitating dogs heads. The film is a great adaptation of Mikhail Bulgakov’s novella (of the same title) but less confined to the Dog’s perspective. Set in Moscow shortly after the revolution, our story follows Sharik, a stray dog adopted by surgeon laureate Filip Filippovich Preobrazhensky for no other reason than to be the unwitting recipient of a dead man’s pituitary and testes. Things go terribly wrong when Sharik becomes not only human but is extolled by the Bolshevik’s as an example of the “New Soviet Man”. A biting satire on the Proletariat and his dictatorship, the novella was a true underground hit, existing only in xerox editions until 1986. The film has become just as much a cult in its home country.

25th March : Mondo Great Britain

Primitive London – Arnold Louis Miller 1965

The sensational follow-up to “London in the Raw” sets out to reflect society’s decay through a sideshow spectacle of 1960s London depravity – and manages to outdo its predecessor. Here, we confront mods, rockers and beatniks at the Ace Cafe, cut some rug with obscure beat band The Zephyrs, witness a seedy Jack the Ripper re-enactment, smirk at flabby men in the sauna and goggle at sordid wife-swapping parties as we discover a pre-permissive Britain still trying to move on from the post-war depression of the 1950s.

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One Response to “SPRING 2009 → AUTUMN 2010 Season (Part.3)”

  1. Heart of a Dog (18th March) would fit very comfortably in any top five of page to screen adaptations. Nice score, Dean, I’ll be recommending it as far and wide as I can.
    PJ

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