Ah what’s more enjoyable than watching a movie with friends? Then afterwords discussing it over coffee… or drinks at a nearby restaurant. The idea of showing greater variation of films in the Williamsport area is starting to take root. Kudos to the gang at the Valley Mosaic in the Pajama Factory for hosting the weekly event.
Here’s the schedule:
November 3rd ”The Devil and Daniel Johnston” -
The Devil and Daniel Johnston (2005) Daniel Johnston, manic-depressive genius singer/songwriter/artist is revealed in this portrait of madness, creativity and love. Director: Jeff Feuerzeig
November 10th “Synth Brittania” -
Synth Britannia (2009) A BBC documentary following a generation of post-punk musicians who went to form successful electronic bands in the 70s and 80s and had a profound impact on present day music. Director: Benjamin Whalley Starring: Gary Numan, Depeche Mode, Yazz, OMD, The Human League, Throbbing Gristle, Kraftwerk.
November 17th “The Enigma of Kaspar Hause”
The Enigma of Kaspar Hause (1974) Director Werner Herzog. Herzog’s film is based upon the true and mysterious story of Kaspar Hauser, a young man who suddenly appeared in Nuremberg in 1828, barely able to speak or walk, and bearing a strange note; he later explained that he had been held captive in a dungeon of some sort for his entire life that he could remember, and only recently was he released, for reasons unknown. His benefactor attempts to integrate him into society, with intriguing results.
November 24th “Little Otek”
Little Otek (Otesanek) (2000) Director: Jan Svankmajer When a childless couple learn that they cannot have children, it causes great distress. To ease his wife’s pain, the man finds a stump in the backyard and chops it and varnishes it into the shape of a child. However the woman takes the root as her baby and starts to pretend that it is real. When the root takes life they seem to have gained a child; but its appetite is much greater than that of a normal child.
December 1st “The Decline of the Western Civilization” (1981)
The Decline of the Western Civilization(1981)
One of the major successes to The Decline of Western Civilization, filmmaker Penelope Spheeris’ indie breakthrough, is that it can perhaps appeal to non-punk fans as to the hardcore ones. More importantly, it captures a moment in history before the movement became completely “market-worthy”, when bands would play (or, at the least, try to play in some cases) in dank, dirty clubs to an audience that had as much self-respect as they had respect for the bands. For the fan, such as myself, there are precious interviews with some of the quasi-legends of LA’s punk-scum, some dead, some still living and still hard-working in the scene.
Performances and interviews include the likes of The Circle Jerks, X, Black Flag (in the pre-Henry Rollins days), Catholic Discipline, Fear, the Alice Bag Band, and most memorable (in my opinion) being the Germs.
Like a kind of anthropologist that’s sneaked into the party, Spheeris gets the behavior of these people down pat, their motives, their likes and hatreds, and the power that was their on and off-screen personas. A few of them almost come off as normal, some don’t, but they’re only offensive to those who aren’t too open to things. On top of that, the film is a must-see to the kinds of kids that think they’re punk fans just because they listen to Good Charlotte and Blink-182: if you want to get the real scoop on the movement and genre of rock you profess to love, give the pioneers a chance. –DoctorLightning.
December 8th “Taqwacore”
Taqwacore: The Birth of Punk Islam (2009) The word Taqwacore is a combination of hardcore, a genre of punk music, and taqwa, an Arabic word that translates as “piety” or “god-fearing.” The first to use the term was writer, journalist, and Muslim convert Michael Muhammad Knight. His novel The Taqwacores, about a group of young Islamic punk rockers, received a storm of recognition among young American Muslims and prompted the formation of various Muslim punk bands.
December 15th “Modulations”
Modulations: Cinema for the Ear (1998) directed by Lara Lee, traces the evolution of electronic music from musique concrete, house, hip hop, techno to the myriad of styles in between. It includes interviews with many notable artists and innovators in electronic music such as Carl Cox, Robert Moog, Coldcut, Squarepusher, Mixmaster Morris, Pierre Henry, Giorgio Moroder, Derrick May, Genesis P-Orridge and Karlheinz Stockhausen.
December 22nd “Basquiat”
Basquiat (1996) Director: Julian Schnabel, Starring: Jeffrey Wright, David Bowie, Gary Oldman, Benicio Del Torro, Dennis Hopper, Christopher Walken, Willem Dafoe and Parker Posey. Basquiat tells the story of the meteoric rise of youthful artist Jean-Michel Basquiat. Starting out as a street artist, living in Thompkins Square Park in a cardboard box, Jean-Michel is “discovered” by Andy Warhol’s art world and becomes a star. But success has a high price, and Basquiat pays with friendship, love, and eventually, his life.
December 29th (To Be Announced)
Sometime in January “Urgh A Music War”
Urgh! A Music War is a British film released in 1982 featuring performances by punk rock, New Wave, and post-punk acts, filmed in 1980. Among the artists featured in the movie are Magazine, The Go-Go’s, The Fleshtones, Joan Jett and the Blackhearts, XTC, Devo, The Cramps, Oingo Boingo, Dead Kennedys, Gary Numan, Klaus Nomi, Wall of Voodoo, Pere Ubu, Steel Pulse, Surf Punks, 999, UB40, Echo & the Bunnymen and The Police. These were many of the most popular groups on the New Wave scene; in keeping with the spirit of the scene, the film also features several less famous acts, and one completely obscure group, Invisible Sex, in what appears to be their single public outing.
Also: Is anyone out there interested in a possible Jim Jarmusch Film Festival ??? including: Stranger than Paradise (1984) Down By Law (1986) Mystery Train (1989) Night On Earth (1991) Dead Man (1995) Ghost Dog: The Way of the Samurai (1999)
“I always start with characters rather than with a plot, which many critics would say is very obvious from the lack of plot in my films – although I think they do have plots – but the plot is not of primary importance to me, the characters are.” –Jim Jarmusch