Church of Film

June 11th, 2018


PRIDE 2018: Two aging actresses share an apartment in Paris, and a life. Retreating into champagne and fantasies, using the trade of theatre to dress a slowly unraveling existence of poverty and loneliness, they try on feminine roles, and revisit the ones that have failed them. Paul Vecchiali's FEMMES FEMMES is a masterpiece of 70s queer whimsy and despair, a madcap and at times delirious spinout to the bottom and back, and to the bottom again. It's also a musical, when it wants to be!

June 6th, 2018


A refugee washes up on the shore of a strange and barren island. At the far end lies an enigmatic "museum," or rather a beautiful Art Deco mansion, the purpose of which remains unknown. But the island isn't as deserted as the visitor had assumed—an enigmatic group of vacationers clad in 1920s getup occasionally appear. Are they real, the hallucinations of a delirious and starving man, or is there some other answer to their mysterious presence? THE INVENTION OF MOREL is a stylish adaptation of Adolfo Bioy Casares's celebrated novel, starring Anna Karina!

June 4th, 2018


PRIDE 2018: Young naif Daniel arrives in Berlin to explore the city, and himself, as a gay man. He finds a city alive with sexual and counter-cultural promise, as he moves from clique to clique—at last arriving at a group of revolutionary queers demanding discourse and action. A garish, provocative, sometimes hilarious docudrama by LGBTQIA activist and filmmaker Rosa Von Praunheim, IT IS NOT THE HOMOSEXUAL WHO IS PERVERSE BUT THE SOCIETY IN WHICH HE LIVES incited massive controversy in Germany and elsewhere upon its release in 1971. A monumental queer classic of the German New Cinema!

May 30th, 2018

CINEMA OF MAY 68 at Clinton Street Theater

Celebrating the 50th anniversary of the failed uprising in France that nevertheless shook the world! CINEMA OF MAY '68 is a program of experimental shorts by greats like rebel actor Pierre Clementi, whose kaleidopscopic Kenneth Angeresque montage, LE REVOLUTION N'EST QU'UN DEBUT. CONTINUONS LE COMBAT, was made as the protestors battled in the streets. And the radical Zanzibar collective's greatest alum, Philippe Garrel, with his celebrated street essay ACTUA 1. Both of these films were considered lost. Other shorts will explore the Bohemian counterculture of the soixante-huitards, Surrealism, Situationism, and Philosophy in the Streets! Shorts will be accompanied by high quality documentary footage of the barricades and protests, edited by Church of Film. The struggle continues!

May 28th, 2018


Platon Andreyevich, an ingenious artist and designer who at one time had led the avant-garde with a treatise on how the artist might perfect the imperfect creations of the gods, seems to be slipping into madness. He is obsessed with using models to create lifelike dolls, and haunted by strange memories. One day he is approached by a wealthy client to design a house for his wife. But the man’s wife seems strangely familiar—is she one of Platon’s former models, or one of his dolls? Oleg Teptsov’s MISTER DESIGNER is a lavish gothic tale based on a story by Alexander Grin (Morgiana) that builds towards a spiraling, hallucinatory climax of horror and psychedelic lunacy. Also, the soundtrack is a killer!

May 21st, 2018


Two American killers, separated not just by decades and hundreds of miles, but by age and just about everything else. LANDSCAPE SUICIDE revisits the scenes of the crimes of Ed Gein and Bernadette Protti as the actors portraying them perform dialogue from trial transcripts. In his moody and haunted retread of the places stained by murders, by the grounds familiar to those who killed, experimental director James Benning touches deep on the American psyche.

May 16th, 2018


Awash in the dreamy eroticism of the sea, under the spell of Rene Magritte and the artists drinking at La Fleur en Papier Doré, Belgian and Dutch artists captured their land and their sublimated desires on film throughout the ages! This program of avant-garde shorts includes legendary Surrealist prankster and Magritte collaborator Marcel Mariën's only film, IMITATION OF CINEMA (1960), Count Henri D'Ursel's notorious THE PEARL (1929), Ernst Moerman's playful dream-riff on masked-man crime serials, MR. FANTOMAS (1937), and many more rare and delightful treasures! Enjoy a few wet dreams, so to speak.

May 14th, 2018


Perrot, an elderly millionaire, patronizes the arts and toys with the lives of artists as a deadly game. He's met his match, however, when he takes an interest in Françoise, a poor Bohemian novelist. For Françoise is also a genius, a psychic, and a Surrealist witch! Director Juan Luis Bunuel (son of Luis Bunuel) proved every bit his father's equal in THE WOMAN WlTH THE RED B0OTS, starring Catherine Deneuve and Fernando Rey in a playful, eccentric, and dark surrealist masterpiece!

May 7th, 2018

ZEDER at Century

Stefano, a writer, receives a secondhand typewriter from his girlfriend Alessandra, and discovers that he can still read the text imprinted on the ribbon. It leads him down a dark trail, uncovering the story of the scientist Paulo Zeder, and the search for mysterious K-Zones, where the dead can be brought back to life… Italian genre master Pupi Avati's ZEDER was an atypical twist on the zombie film, replacing shock horror with moody atmosphere, science fiction, Occult fascination and tragic romance, elevating genre schlock to a higher plane, and creating a new kind of horror picture.

April 30th, 2018


Two explosive pieces from the LA Rebellion! In Larry Clark’s AS ABOVE SO BELOW (1973), 52m, a Marine returns to the US to find it under a post-Watts rebellion state of siege, with underground black revolutionaries plotting an uprising, and the state determined to put down any resistance. In Haile Gerima’s CHILD OF RESISTANCE (1972), 36m, director Haile Gerima translates his own dream of a militant behind bars for activism, inspired by Angela Davis.

April 25th, 2018

AMERICA PLAYS ITSELF at Clinton Street Theater

A program of experimental shorts exploring the United States—the lights, the cars, the music! And also, yes, the consumerism, colonization, and conformity. Actually, mostly those last things. Includes BEAUTY KNOWS NO PAIN, a brilliant and biting satirical documentary of Texas’s Kilgore College Rangerettes squad and their Spartan, quasi-fascist regime. HOUSTON TEXAS, THE SIXTH SIDE OF THE PENTAGON, and BROADWAY BY LIGHT all explore different angles of American culture from the outsider’s perspective (all with the collaboration of the great docu-essayist Chris Marker). SUPER UP, SAN FRANCISCO and SQUARE TIMES explore the dizzying effects of proliferated marketing signs and symbols on the psyche. And there’s more!

April 23rd, 2018


Youth delinquent and violent hustler Stevan terrorizes Belgrade, rising from petty criminal to mafia boss and political demagogue, demolishing hope for the youth in Tito’s Yugoslavia in a tornado of drugs, sex, and crime! Jovan Jovanovic’s shocking Black Wave classic YOUNG & HEALHTY AS A ROSE drew heavily on the pop art visuals and rebel élan of early Jean-Luc Godard, crafting a film that horrified censors and was immediately banned. Back then it seemed deliberately provocative and scandalous, but decades later Stevan’s promise that he was Yugoslavia’s future rang eerily prophetic…

April 16th, 2018

IO ISLAND at Century

Sun Wu-hyun entices investors with a promising ad campaign—a hotel near the mysterious island of Io, where local legends maintain the secret to immortality is locked away. But death is also promised for any man who sees it. He is forced to clear his own name, however, when a journalist opposing his plans goes missing. In pursuit of justice, Sun discovers the strange nearby island of Parang, populated almost entirely of women divers, and learns of their rituals and history. A peculiar riff on The Wicker Man by South Korean cult film director Kim Ki-young, IO ISLAND is a slow-burning, weirdo thriller that builds to a perverse finale of witchcraft that you must see to believe!

April 9th, 2018


Master thief DiaboIik's schemes grow more and more daring, and threaten the global economy and organized crime. To stop him and his partner Eva, it may take the combined efforts of the police and the mafia! In DANGER DIAB0LlK!, cult film maestro Mario Bava tackled Italy's most celebrated comic strip with panache -- a wild array of dizzying set pieces, costumes, and psychedelic madness, paying homage to the silent serials of the past with the tale of an anti-capitalist hero and the woman he loves. Featuring one of Ennio Morricone's greatest soundtracks!

April 2nd, 2018


A shorts and featurettes program of love, death, and the sea! Our headline film, DAINAH LA METISSE, is an early masterpiece by French master Jean Gremillon. A strange, stylized and alluring film, DAINAH is a jazzy, nightmarish poem about racial tension and sublimated colonial guilt, set amidst the strange parties and magic-laced maskarades on an ocean liner. Also included will be Dmitri Kirsanoff's haunting experimental narrative, MENILMONTANT, and Jean Epstein's beautiful LE TEMPESTAIRE.

March 29th, 2018

Mini-Festival #3: LA REBELLI0N

In the wake of the Watts rebeIlion, black students and professors at UCLA turned their eyes on film to explore black identity, representation, and political consciousness in a spellbinding cinematic insurrection now known as the LA RebeIlion. Influenced by the New York avant-garde and the Third World Cinemas coming out of Latin America, these directors sought to reconstruct film language in inventive ways to counter Hollywood’s anti-blackness and seize images for themselves. Together they paved the way for a new black cinema. Includes stunning short work by HaiIe Gerima, JuIie Dash, CharIes Burnett, and many more!

March 28th, 2018

Mini-Festival #2: PEAU DE PÊCHE

Peau de Pêche is an orphaned street urchin who one day is taken under the wing of a beautiful woman. Alas, the world separates them and takes him to the country during the war. But as a young man trying to navigate the torments of love, he may need the nurturing guidance of his dream mother… can he find her again? A lost silent film by one of cinema’s greatest forgotten women pioneers, Marie Epstein, PEAU DE PÊCHE is alight with beautiful subjective montage and stunningly evocative images that illustrate Epstein preoccupations—surrogate motherhood, suicidal ideation of childhood, and abandonment among them. Church of Film has made subtitles for this lost treasure, and selected a film score, recovering a beautiful work of art!

March 27th, 2018

Mini-Festival #1: Adventures in Color

A treasure trove of short film work from the beginning of cinema to the mid-20th Century, revealing filmmakers trying to break free from the silver screen into glorious color! This set will feature beautiful hand stenciled coloration, two-tone Technicolor processing, and other means and methods of bringing images into living color! Films will include Pathecolor fairy tale films, scandalous pre-code dance skits like THE DEVIL’S CABARET, and other candy-colored adventures! Get your eyes drunk!

March 26th, 2018


A mosaic of stories and episodes set in a small village flutter about, merge and collide until a stranger comes to town and touches everything with a bit of anarchy and magic. And then it's party time! A banquet of folk art, colors, comedy and magic, it's a visually saturated ode to the enchanting spell of cinema and, well, just a fun piece of Summer Saturnalia! Filmed in the Summer of '68, Slovakian director Elo Havetta's CELEBRATION IN THE BOTANICAL GARDEN is an unrestrained, uncomplicated expression of joy, freedom and the need for miracles.

March 20th, 2018


The awakening and growth a child’s consciousness as he experiences the psychological traumas of youth within the haunted enclosure of the nuclear family. Shot in stark black and white and evoking the visual primacy of silent film, LE REVELATEUR is one of French cinema’s most beautiful experimental pieces. Directed by Philippe Garrel for the radical Zanzibar group amidst the political turmoil of May ’68, the film is a strange, sad, and mysterious commentary on generational strife and psychic pain. Complemented with an original live score performed by HASTE, the already eerie, complex sadness of the film is intensified. Haste's score is an ethereal piece of psychedelic ambiance and intricate minimalism evoked with the use of guitar pedals. It explores darkness and bright light simultaneously, a theme that is visually mastered in the film itself.

March 19th, 2018


The world of Gandahar is a peaceful matriarchal society where everyone lives in harmony with nature, until a mysterious invasion of metal men begin petrifying and capturing its people. The warrior Sylvain is dispatched to find the source of the metal men, and locates Metamorphis, a giant pink brain floating in the Circumventing Ocean. But Metamorphis is unaware of why or how the metal men are manifesting… GANDAHAR is the final masterpiece of genius animator René Laloux (Fantastic Planet)—a stunning sci-fi epic of time paradox and thought genesis filled to the brim with detailed, imaginative imagery and a spacey soundtrack.

March 12th, 2018


The mysterious Man Without a Face plots to steal the hidden treasure of a secretly existing sect of the Order of the Knights Templar in an over-the-top adventure involving lost treasure, murder, underground ceremonies, mad scientists, robots, and a mind-controlled zombie army. NUITS ROUGES was Surrealist Georges Franju’s final tribute to the silent serials of Louis Feuillade—aggressively and joyfully escalating the absurdity of the bygone fantastique-crime genre, propelling it into a raucous, garish, at times eerie and atmospheric film that somehow blends high camp, anti-fascism, moody dream reality, and winking postmodern détournement! Weird…

March 1st, 2018


Cats! Poison! Jewels! MORGIANA is a gothic tale based on a story by Alexander Grin, the Russian Poe. The story of jealousy of one evil sister toward her twin, and the stately kitty cat caught in the fray, just trying to get to his water dish! Directed by Czechoslovak New Wave alum Juraj Herz (The Cremator, Beauty & the Beast), shot by the brilliant Jaroslav Kucera (Daisies, Cassandra Cat, everything cool ever), and scored by Lubos Fiser (Valerie & Her Week of Wonders). And starring a cat! Our Church of Film LA Premiere screening will be followed by a dance party w/ DJ sets Dawn Sharp, Kenna & Surplus.

February 21st, 2018


Mind-warping shorts from the North, exploring the counter-culture and, err, influence of the times! Pockets heavy with public funding via the National Film Board of Canada, a whole generation of radicals cut their teeth on wild expressions of Canadian weirdness, under the vague promise to make “films designed to interpret Canada.” Including the groundbreaking, brain-meltingly mad montage of Arthur Lipsett’s FREEFALL and 21-87, Quebecois youth delinquency celebrations Claude Jutra’s THE DEVIL’S TOY and Jean Beaudin ode to psychedelic “happenings,” VERTIGE, as well as animated works by Ishu Patel and Jacques Drouin!, and more

February 19th, 2018


Based on the fable by Goethe, in which the animal kingdom, ruled by King Lion and his lascivious Queen, struggles to contain the mischievous Renard the Fox, whose malicious pranks are taking their toll. THE STORY OF THE FOX (La Roman de Renard) is a stop-motion masterpiece by genius Russian émigré Ladislas Starevich, who worked ten years with his daughter to create one of the first ever animated sound features! The screening will also feature his beautiful short, THE MASCOT!

February 12th, 2018


A famous dance choreographer, Lu-ling, attempts suicide after a break-up, while elsewhere a young woman is mudered by her boyfriend and his shady business partners in a mysterious Occult ritual gone wrong. When their spirits meet, Lu-ling becomes the vehicle of murderous revenge. Culminating in an epic allegorical dance and Orphic journey to the other side, Fred Tam's SPLIT OF THE SPIRIT is a unique piece of the Taiwanese New Wave—a stylish, macabre and spiritual horror thriller!

February 11th, 2018

Church of Film 2018 Party & Fundraiser at Killingsworth Dynasty

Visuals by Church of Film will explore the depths of silent occult, cult, and curio film. Live performances by HASTE, and music by PRINCESS DIMEBAG and ESPECIALLY HEINOUS! Plus, merchandise! Get your own Church of Film T-Shirt with an original design by Dreem Street!

February 5th, 2018

Carnival of Sinners aka La Main du Diable at Century

Roland, an impoverished Parisian painter who has more luck with women than skill with a brush, unwittingly enters into a Faustian bargain when he purchases a mysterious box containing a human hand for the price of a nickel. Soon everything he dared dream of comes easily his way: fame for his painting, the woman he loves, incredible wealth. But like any deal with the Devil, he has gotten more than he bargained for… in a desperate bid to save his soul, he finds himself in Monte Carlo during Carnival, confronting the phantoms of every soul who has possessed his magical hand throughout the ages, until he finds the original owner. Together they must confront the Devil. Made in Occupied France, CARNIVAL OF SINNERS, or La Main du Diable, was a late masterstroke of expressionist horror by legendary maestro of the supernatural and fantastique, Maurice Tourneur!

January 31st, 2018


A century of women in experimental animation, from the silent era to the present! It’s a tour of radical animation experiments, including the paper cut-outs of Lotte Reniger’s fairy tales, the jazz-inspired visual music of Mary Ellen Bute, the pinscreen inventions of co-creator Claire Parker, and beyond into the surreal work of more modern animators! SHADOWPLAY is curated survey of the contributions women have made to the field of experimental animation and visuals from the inception of the cinematic arts.

January 29th, 2018


A North Korean Martial Arts film! When Hong is outcast from his family as an illegitimate child, his stepmother hires bandits to make sure his departure is final. Fortunately he is rescued by an aging master, who trains the young child in martial arts, divination, and magic. Based on the 16th century folk tales, HONG KIL-DONG is a Korean Robin Hood tale, brimming with swordplay and magic, and of course some good ol' class warfare. It remains one of the DPRK's most popular films!

January 22nd, 2018


A predatory concert pianist, Grigori, sets his sights on young Lisa as his next target. But Lisa has an unlikely guardian angel in Vera, a mysterious and murderous cabaret singer. But what is Vera's motive, and what is it in her painful past that compels her to intervene? Legendary Polish femme fatale Pola Negri returned to Germany to star in Austrian actor, songman and auteur Willi Forst's dramatic masterwork, MAZURKA—so good, Hollywood immediately made a rare order for a shot-for-shot American remake. But who can replace Pola Negri?!

January 17th, 2018


A carefully curated collection of short films that will leave you asking, “What on earth did I just watch?” UNCANNY TALES charts a course through the narrative experimental work of Surrealists Raul Ruiz and Jean-Claude Carrière, Mexican horror anthologies, English video pieces, and beyond, searching for those corners of storytelling where logic seems to have dropped the ball, or in which characters are trapped in an insidious new logic, with weird and terrifying results.

January 15th, 2018


Yuka, a shy schoolgirl at the top of her class, discovers she has powerful psychic abilities. She puts them to use helping her friend, class loser Koji. But when a new student, Keiko, shows up to school demonstrating similar abilities, using them to seize control of the student council and usher in a Fascist regime, Yuka and Keiko must find a way to end her reign of terror! SCHOOL IN THE CROSSHAIRS is another mischievous, whacked-out genre fireball from weirdo-genius Nobuhiko Obayashi, the director of the notorious Hausu!

January 8th, 2018


A destroyed earth, a desolate city in ruins. TVs still operate, cinemas still function, there is electricity, but no people. The Morning Patrol guards the empty metropolis, electronic voices warn the non-existent citizens to evacuate… but for what purpose? A lone woman sneaks in, seeking to pass through the so-called Forbidden Zone and make her way to the sea, ducking the Patrol and dodging their traps. She has no memory. THE MORNING PATROL is Greek director Nikos Nikolaidis’s somber and foreboding look at a future in ruination, and a past half remembered.

January 3rd, 2018


At the CLINTON STREET THEATER! Celebrating the postwar generations, surrounding the Nihon Student Movement of the 60s, the radical Art Theatre Guild production house, and the avant-garde throughout the second half of the 20th century! A curated collection of surreal journeys, including Shuji Terayama's explorations of childhood trauma and memory, LABYRITNTH IN THE GRASS and BUTTERFLY, Tengai Amano's poem about a child who cannot accept death, TWILIGHT, and other short work by Mari Terashima, Toshio Matsumoto and more!

January 1st, 2018


Armed only with the slogan “Quit Everything,” the people of France walk out of their jobs—and never return. Labor and money are abolished. Production stops. Consumption stops. Markets stop. Governments stop. Now people work only to fulfill their needs, and use only what they need. Consumer goods are museum pieces, the earth is a common land and garden, and wage labor is a barbaric, faintly remembered past. Somewhere, counter-revolutionaries gather stacks of money, now useless paper, hoping one day it will again be charged with significance and elevate them to the status of lords. This is a report from the first year of a liberated world! Jacques Doillon’s YEAR 01 (with contributing pieces by Left Bank luminaries Alain Resnais and Jean Rouch) is a serio-comic Utopia, a series of imaginative sketches based on the philosophies behind the tumult of May ’68 and the Situationist International. Imagine a future!

December 20th, 2017


Bursting forth from an egg in Flower Fruit Mountain, the powerful and magical Monkey King is crowned by the animals below. But the Jade Emperor in Heaven is afraid of the mighty new king and invites him to be his stable master so that he can keep a watchful eye. He soon learns that the rebellious spirit of the handsome Monkey King may be too much for him to control, especially when the king declares himself Great Sage Equal to the Heavens! Wan Laiming’s UPROAR IN HEAVEN, adapted from the 16th century classic Journey to the West, was the first animated feature made in Mao's China—a beloved rebel tale told with swirling colors and a towering imagination, restored to its pristine glory. [Note, this is a restoration of the 1965 original, *NOT* the 2012 3D reconstruction].

December 18th, 2017

Christmas Ghost Stories AT CENTURY

In the grave tradition of English ghost tale masters like M.R. James, four short films explore the uncanny and unclear boundaries between the living and the dead. In THE SlGNALMAN, a lonely train station functionary is haunted by visions of a phantom and the trauma of a crash that occurred years before. THE ASH TREE is a chilling tale of atavism and a witch’s revenge on a witchfinder general’s descendant. An elderly man with a taste for the Occult has a habit of adopting young orphans in LOST HEARTS, but for what nefarious purpose? And a buried treasure brings misfortune and terror on the archaeologist who finds it, for the treasure has an undead guardian in A WARNlNG TO THE CURlOUS… Lawrence Gordon Clark’s stark and frankly terrifying adaptations of classic English ghost stories were a beloved Christmas tradition in the UK, and still bring a chill to the holidays!

December 11th, 2017


Marcell Jankovic's animated feature, SON OF THE WHITE MARE, is psychedelic bath, a swirling trip of Hungarian folklore, Sigmund Freud, and anxieties, dreams and fears about industry and technology. When the lid on Pandora's Box has been opened under the dragon tree at the gates of Hell, the three sons of the white mare must come together and journey into the underworld to slay dragons and set things right! A kaleidoscopic monument to Hungarian animation that may short-circuit brains, so be sure to check them at the door!

December 6th, 2017


Based on the Hans Christian Andersen fairy tale, THE SNOW QUEEN is a surreal and sinister film focusing on the young girl Kerttu’s journey to rescue her brother Kai from the evil Snow Queen. Kerttu travels through beautiful and hostile lands, meeting various strange and threatening characters on the way – befriended and helped by some, waylaid and trapped by others. A rarely seen landmark of Finnish cinema, and a wintry fantasy epic!

December 4th, 2017


A master sculptor and his apprentice, Yosaku, seek out a mystical tree for carving a statue commissioned by a local temple—but this angers the ghostly witch of the woods, who takes her revenge on the master but spares the student. Not long after, the beautiful Yuki appears in the village and falls in love with Yosaku. But through marriage and children, poverty and hardship, both Yuki and Yosaku both must keep a dreadful secret… THE SNOW WOMAN is a somber and elegant kaidan, a traditional Japanese ghost story, about love, sacrifice, and compassion, shot with painterly compositions by Kurasawa and Mizoguchi understudy Tokuzo Tanaka, and featuring a haunting score by Akira Ifukube.

November 29th, 2017


A pilot crashes his plane in the Sahara and, stranded, meets a strange young boy whom he calls the little Prince. While he works to repair his plane, the Prince recounts his adventures journeying from his home planet, a tiny asteroid with three volcanoes and a rose, toward Earth, and all the planets inbetween. A highly-stylized adaptation of Antoine de Saint-Exupéry’s beloved children’s book by Lithuanian painter-turned-director, Arunas Zebriunas, THE LITTLE PRINCE wonderfully captures the melancholy ethos of the cherished classic, with stunning set pieces and desert photography.

November 27th, 2017


When a luxury yacht finds itself shipwrecked on a mysterious island, its motley crew of survivors head out to find food and shelter. They stumble upon another ship whose crew seems to have met with a bad end. And what’s with the strange mushrooms native to the island? Can you eat them? An eerie atmospheric sci-fi horror seasoned with psychedelics, ATTACK OF THE MUSHROOM PEOPLE snuck in commentary and controversy with production design alluding to the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki—it was banned in many parts of Japan and elsewhere.

November 22nd, 2017


Beautiful young Rupa’s face is partially disfigured as a child, and she grows up castigated by her community and family as an abomination. Enter suave bachelor Rajiv, an engineer designing an important dam for the village. He abhors imperfection, but is drawn to mysterious Rupa’s enchanting voice. Can he reconcile the voice and the woman he loves with a face that terrifies him? Rich with bold costumes and colors, towering set pieces and wonderful songs, Bollywood auteur Raj Kapoor’s late film LOVE SUBLIME championed character over physical beauty. Ironically it was dismissed as too flashy, racy and vulgar at the time… today, all its extravagant entertainment and knotted contradictions make it all the more appealing!

November 20th, 2017


Belgrade, 1985: A city with 2 million people but missing one thing to make it a real metropolis—a serial killer! It’s about to graduate, however, when Pera Mitic, a flower salesman with serious Oedipal issues, starts squeezing necks over carnations. Meanwhile an ambitious punk singer named Spiridon (Srdjan Saper, real life frontman for Yugoslavia’s most celebrated band, Idoli), develops a mysterious psychic connection with the killer, and whips up a controversial hit single—an ode to the Belgrade Strangler. Set around Belgrade’s underground radio and club scene, STRANGLER VS. STRANGLER is a brilliantly macabre, hilarious, and creepy pastiche of Hitchcockian horror, black comedy, and Yugoslavian punk!

November 13th, 2017


A showcase of rare late Soviet Sci-fi and Futurist animation! From monsters and Mayakovsky, Utopian Socialism and space exploration, to ecological disaster and weaponization, and capitalism and colonialization, this set is an odyssey of hopes, fears, and aspirations, in vibrant, swirling, psychedelic glory! This collection focuses on the work of brilliant animator Vladimir Tarasov, including his Futurist tribute to Mayakovsky, FORWARD MARCH TIME, and his miniature astral epic THE PASSAGE, among many others!

November 6th, 2017


Farouk, a young man with a poetic temperament, is orphaned in his hostile and unhappy village. He leaves with a friend to live as a beggar in the mountains, where he finds himself again surrounded by violence and inhumanity—but also great beauty. THE MAN WHO CHASES BIRDS is a rare and tender coming-of-age story set in the mountains of Uzbekistan. Inspired by Sergei Paradjanov and his long-distance friend Michelangelo Antonioni, Uzbek auteur Ali Khamraev turned this simple story into a sumptuous visual feast and mood piece worthy of the best art films of his time.

November 1st, 2017

CITY OF PIRATES at the Clinton Street Theater

Graceful, damned Isidore wanders through life as though it were a dream fractured or decomposing. A homicidal boy named Malo, her husband and other self, purifies her world with blood, fire and violence. She is heading for a castle on an island where her brother, lover, and captor Toby, a man with multiple personalities, dwells. Chilean director Raul Ruiz's widely hailed Surrealist masterpiece CITY OF PIRATES was written entirely from dreams and autowriting, and moves in gloomy, mystical dream logic. One of cinema's most enchanted poems!

October 30th, 2017

POE! A Night of Edgar Allen Poe at Century

As in Edgar Allen Poe, the master of gothic horror, and a favorite for all arthouse directors of every generation for the striking imagery in his magnificent short stories and poems. Our ode to Poe will feature first and foremost French pioneer Jean Epstein's masterpiece, THE FALL OF THE HOUSE OF USHER, a bewildering piece of film poetry co-scripted by his young associate director and student, Luis Bunuel. Also included will be Austrian director Kurt Steinwedner's THE RAVEN, a grim expressionist adaptation of the famous poem, and French New Wave critic-director Alexandre Astruc's horrifying THE PIT AND THE PENDULUM, the only true adaptation of Poe's mind-bending story described in different pitches of the darkness.

October 23rd, 2017


Mr. Craig arrives at a country resort for a job, but finds things strangely familiar... everything that happens corresponds to a half-remembered recurring nightmare. Intrigued by his déjà vu, others begin to recount their own tales of the supernatural. But will they learn to trust their own dreams before Mr. Craig’s nightmare becomes real? Engaging the talents of three classic English directors with Brazilian avant-garde designer Cavalcanti, DEAD 0F NIGHT is itself a half-remembered legend of a horror film, one that inspired cosmologist Fred Hoyle to formulate his Steady-State Theory of the Universe in his theater seat. "It's completely circular!” He marveled of the plot. “You can come in at any place and see it until the place you came in!"

October 18th, 2017


A hundred years in the past, a demonic priest visits a sleepy Californian town and brings with him contagion. He vows to return... and as a strange zombie contagion grips Point Dune, CA, it seems like that prophecy may be coming true! A remarkably strange blend of zombie film and arthouse, MESSIAH OF EVIL gathered cult cache over the years for its heady take on the genre, it's over-the-top set pieces, and its mysterious occult plot (around which conspiracy still swirl!)

October 16th, 2017


Two young lovers, Françoise and Anna, become lost while on vacation. When Anna disappears, Françoise follows a mysterious dwarf and arrives at a strange castle. There the mistress of the castle, Morgana La Fey, offers her immortality, but at a cost... MORGANA & HER NYMPHS is one of the great gems of 70s French fantastique, blending a dreamy surrealism with horror, sensuality, and stunning design. A strange and mesmerizing nightmare...!

October 9th, 2017


To the public, Dr. Bernard Hichcock is a beloved surgeon celebrated for his advances in anesthetic research. But he is leading a double life… at home, he plays a kinky game with his wife—until something goes horribly wrong… A taboo-smashing gothic horror, Riccardo Fredo’s THE HORRIBLE DR. HICHCOCK shocked audiences and has been widely hailed not only as an elegant precursor to the horror of Mario Bava and Dario Argento, but as one of the most subversive horror films of all time.

October 4th, 2017

CUADECUC VAMPIR at the Clinton Street Theater

Catalan rebel filmmaker Pere Portabella tagged along for the production of Jesus Franco’s Count Dracula, shot in (Francisco) Franco’s Spain and starring Christopher Lee. Franco’s film was forgettable, but Portabella’s film, a blistering high contrast reconstruction of the vampire myth, accompanied by an ambient noise score and film stock that seemed to decompose while projected, has become one of the world’s most celebrated experimental films. CUADECUC VAMPIR was more than just an atmospheric deconstruction of the genre, it was a sly wink at the creation of a monster, and the pathetic folly of militarist personality cults and Fascism.

October 2nd, 2017


A young thief falls in love with a comedienne in a traveling carnival, but runs afoul of the law. To win his freedom, he must use his cloak of invisibility to save the ruling Lord’s daughter from a nefarious court alchemist, who steals the hearts of others to fuel his magical machines. Juraj Herz’s (Morgiana) THE NINTH HEART was a spectacular gothic fantasy filmed in tandem with his dark adaptation of Beauty & the Beast, with set design by his longtime friend Jan Švankmajer!

September 27th, 2017

FREAK ORLAND0 at the Clinton Street Theater

Gender-morphing time traveler Orlando enters Freak City, a consumerist utopia/dystopia run by the deranged inmates of modernity’s mutant extremities. Their journey, unfolding in chapters which cycle through her shifting identity, brings them through strange landscapes, even stranger people, and unbelievable worlds of madness. Designed and directed by radical provocateur Ulrike Ottinger, FREAK 0RLAND0 is a brilliant work of absolute surrealist madness, with eye-pummeling visuals, towering set pieces and high fashion costuming on steroids. With new English subtitles.

September 25th, 2017

THE DOLL at Century

A pathologically shy night watchman falls deeply in love with a mannequin and plots her theft. In his lonely, spare apartment he tends obsessively to her needs and comfort, until at last she comes alive and returns his love! But his new manifested lover has demands, and the world around him has serious questions… can a fragile and introverted creature cope with and explain his incomprehensible relationship? THE DOLL is a striking, frightening psychological thriller that recalls Hitchcock’s Psycho and presages Polanski’s Repulsion.

September 18th, 2017


Mary's sister, Jacqueline, has gone missing. As she searches for clues to her disappearance, she finds herself closer and closer to a shadowy group, the Palladists—followers of an ancient Satanic cult. Producer Val Lewton's chilling film is one of the most enigmatic riddles of 1940s Hollywood -- a film that broke so many taboos that studio heads didn't know what to think: Satanism, Lesbianism, suicide... and yet it is not shock cinema, but rather a somber and majestic cinematic poem about a woman's descent into self-destruction, and the solace that some may find in death.

September 6th, 2017

MY TWENTIETH CENTURY at the Clinton Street Theater

Identical twin orphans Dora and Lily are separated as children in late 19th century Budapest, and come to age in a rapidly changing world alight with the electric light bulb and the birth of cinema. Dora grows to be a coquettish high class con artist, and Lili a bomb-toting anarchist. Their paths meet when Hungarian gentleman Z inadvertently courts both. Ildikó Enyedi's MY TWENTIETH CENTURY is a madcap magic-realist romp through Europe at the birth of a new era, spinning often wildly out of control into surreal flights of fancy.

September 4th, 2017


A magical circus troupe arrives into a sleepy Czech town, disrupting the mundane affairs and routines of the townspeople. With them is Mokol, a cat wearing sunglasses which, when removed, exposes everyone Mokol looks at in their true colors. While the adults find the cat dangerous for revealing their hypocrisies, the children love him. Vojtech Jasný's WHEN THE CAT COMES... (aka CASSANDRA CAT) was one of the first films of the nascent Czech New Wave to become an enormous international success, with brilliant color photography and effects by the great Jaroslav Kucera (Daisies, Morgiana, the Little Mermaid).

August 30th, 2017


The first feature by Japanese New Wave hero and renaissance man, Shûji Terayama (Pastoral: to Die in the Country), THROW AWAY YOUR BOOKS, RALLY IN THE STREETS is an explosive and manic psychedelic exploration of the director and poet's own troubled upbringing, and also of a nation wrestling with a haunting past and the promise of a revolutionary future. Told in feverish metaphorical vignettes, and accompanied by an raucous soundtrack by the Tokyo Kid Brothers, it's a film the tests the boundaries of film's poetic possibilities.

August 23rd, 2017

ALICE IN WONDERLAND at the Clinton Street Theater

Alice jumps down the rabbit hole in Lewis Carrol's familiar children's tale, but this time with a twist! Surrealist maestro Jean-Christophe Averty (Ubu Roi, Histoire de Melodie Nelson) outdid himself with a frenzy of electronic tricks, mixed inlays, collages of images and cartoons to make the most visually overwhelming and absurd adaptation of ALICE IN WONDERLAND ever! Aired only on French television in the 70s, this insane piece of experimental video art is bound to blow some fuses! With subtitles for the first time in English!

August 21st, 2017


A bankrupt merchant travels through a haunted forest to make his fortune, but must stop at a mysterious castle. There, in exchange for his life and fortune, he must sacrifice his daughter to the Castle's gruesome lord. A gloomy, baroque rendition of the familiar tale by Czechoslovakian New Wave master Juraj Herz (The Cremator, Morgiana), this BEAUTY AND THE BEAST hews closer to the traditional folk tales in presenting the beast, while also making deep ventures into Cocteauish surrealism.

August 16th, 2017

SOVIET SCI-FI ANIMATION at the Clinton Street Theater

A showcase of rare late Soviet Sci-fi and Futurist animation! From monsters and Mayakovsky, Utopian Socialism and space exploration, to ecological disaster and weaponization, and capitalism and colonialization, this set is an odyssey of hopes, fears, and aspirations, in vibrant, swirling, psychedelic glory! This collection focuses on the work of brilliant animator Vladimir Tarasov, including his Futurist tribute to Mayakovsky, FORWARD MARCH TIME, and his miniature astral epic THE PASSAGE, among many others!

August 14th, 2017


A groovy drifter named David accidentally kills a strange, philosophically inclined old gentleman on a distant highway. Turning onto backroads, he finds himself lost at a far out cottage inhabited by three very fashionable witchy women, Samantha, Liv & Bibiana. There’s also a weird castle in the woods nearby. Probably nothing… right? Psychedelic, campy, moody, sensual… QUEENS OF EVIL is a piece par excellence of cult retro-pop that mixes Easy Rider cliché with Euro-horror and Hansel & Gretel motiffs.

July 26th, 2017

POISON FOR THE FAIRIES at the Clinton Street Theater

Graciela, a young and troubled young girl, becomes obsessed with witchcraft. She befriends Fabiola, a wealthy schoolmate, and impresses her with her knowledge of the black arts. But what begins first as childish playfulness increasingly becomes more destructive and sinister, until utter mayhem erupts. One of Mexican auteur Carlos Enrique Taboada's most accaimed works, POSION FOR THE FAIRIES is an elegant, witty, and unsettling psychological horror film!

July 19th, 2017

MORGANA AND HER NYMPHS at the Clinton Street Theater

Two young lovers, Françoise and Anna, become lost while on vacation. When Anna disappears, Françoise follows a mysterious dwarf and arrives at a strange castle. There the mistress of the castle, Morgana La Fey, offers her immortality, but at a cost... MORGANA & HER NYMPHS is one of the great gems of 70s French fantastique, blending a dreamy surrealism with horror, sensuality, and stunning design. A strange and mesmerizing nightmare...!

July 17th, 2017

BLACKJACK at Century

A tennis coach accidentally knocks out the eye of one his students. Restoring her vision requires a visit to the mysterious unlicensed surgeon, Blackjack, who lives in a secluded house, and the theft of an eyeball from a ganster-run eye lab. But where does this eyeball come from? Why does it provide visions of a strange man, and evoke a tortured gothic romance? BLACKJACK is Nobuhiko Obayashi’s crazy follow-up to his notorious cult hit, Hausu!

July 10th, 2017


A pilot crashes his plane in the Sahara and, stranded, meets a strange young boy whom he calls the little Prince. While he works to repair his plane, the Prince recounts his adventures journeying from his home planet, a tiny asteroid with three volcanoes and a rose, toward Earth, and all the planets inbetween. A highly-stylized adaptation of Antoine de Saint-Exupéry’s beloved children’s book by Lithuanian painter-turned-director, Arunas Zebriunas, THE LITTLE PRINCE wonderfully captures the melancholy ethos of the cherished classic, with stunning set pieces and desert photography.

July 5th, 2017

MORNING PATROL at the Clinton Street Theater

A destroyed earth, a desolate city in ruins. TVs still operate, cinemas still function, there is electricity, but no people. The Morning Patrol guards the empty metropolis, electronic voices warn the non-existent citizens to evacuate… but for what purpose? A lone woman sneaks in, seeking to pass through the so-called Forbidden Zone and make her way to the sea, ducking the Patrol and dodging their traps. She has no memory. THE MORNING PATROL is Greek director Nikos Nikolaidis’s somber and foreboding look at a future in ruination, and a past half remembered.

June 28th, 2017

PRIVATE VICES PUBLIC VIRTUES at the Clinton Street Theater

A wild, orgiastic and conspiratorial retelling of the Mayerling Affair, in which the young heirs to the Austro-Hungarian Empire conspire against their parents, plotting political revolution amidst a mad party in which all taboos are confronted. Miklos Jansco's PRIVATE VICES PUBLIC VIRTUES was roundly booed when it scandalously opened the 1976 Cannes Film Festival. Today we can judge anew the merits of its liberating commentary on the hazy mixture of free love, drugs, and revolutionary politics that had engulfed Jancso's generation. Probably not safe for younger audiences... and maybe not safe for anyone!

June 21st, 2017

LA RUPTURE at the Clinton Street Theater

In one of Claude Chabrol’s strangest thrillers, a young mother flees from her husband, whose violent mental breakdown has led to the injury of her child. Unfortunately, she is a poor working woman and a former dancer, and her husband is the scion of a vast industrial enterprise. To win her freedom and secure her child’s future, she must confront a vast patriarchal conspiracy that seeks to discredit and destroy her, through illicit drugs and nefarious sexual plots. THE BREACH (La Rupture) is a paranoid psychedelic thriller unlike anything else produced by the Hitchcockian French master.

June 19th, 2017

ANNA at Century

A night of Serge Gainsbourg! A successful ad man in swinging Paris falls in love with a girl in a photograph—of course, who else but Anna Karina? Part winking Godard pop and part candy-colored Jacques Demy musical, the swirling parade of pre-’68 Paris is emceed by the one and only Serge Gainsbourg, who also provides the soundtrack. It probably doesn’t hold up to scrutiny, but who cares? It’s good campy fun. Also featuring Marianne Faithfull!

June 14th, 2017


Three friends return from a three month sojourn to find that an economic downturn has robbed them all of their fortunes. Undaunted, the three of them decide to open a gas station and try their hand at manual labor. When a beautiful woman appears at the station, the three of them eagerly vie for her attentions, but only one of them can win her heart. THREE GOOD FRIENDS was one of the last great comedic masterpieces of Weimar Germany, and one of the best films produced by the legendary film duo of Willy Fritsch and Lilian Harvey. Brimming with charm, humor, and those familiar Weimar tropes of gender play and role reversal, it stands as wondrous monument to an irreverent culture in the midst of catastrophic change.

June 7th, 2017


Letty moves from Virginia to West Texas to stay with her cousin's family, but soon finds herself unwelcome. Forced into a marriage to a man she does not love, she is tormented by the incessant winds— the constant violent howling, her isolation and sadness, and the hostility of those around her threatens to consume her. One of cinema's great masterpieces, Victor Sjostrom's rarely seen THE WIND was both a crowning achievement for Sweden's pioneering filmmaker and for actress Lillian Gish, who delivers one of the screen's most transcendent performances.

June 5th, 2017


Starring Grande Otelo as Macunaima, "a hero with no character," Joaquim Pedro de Andrade's surreal farce is one of the monumental classics of the Brazilian Cinema Novo. Macunaima is born a feckless, whiny, and guileful child in the jungle. A magical transformation turns him into a handsome white man, but does nothing to change his disposition. It does, however, change the way people see him and that makes more than enough difference. An extraordinarily colorful, madcap and surreal social satire that follows Macunaima and his cohorts as they make their way through modern day Brazil, with it's revolutionary violence, its sexual liberty, and its mad cannibal (literally…) industrialists! Based on Mario de Andrade's modernist classic novel from 1928.