Sheldon Rochlin – Signals Through the Flames: The Story of the Living Theatre (1984)


Julian Beck and Judith Malina picked up the torch from Artaud and carried it into the theaters and streets of the world for more than 40 years. Their Living Theatre inspired the off-Broadway movement in the 40’s and 50’s and the radical theatre in the 60’s and 70’s. This tale of social and esthetic breakthrough weaves excerpts from their most controversial productions with on-the-road interviews with Beck and Malina, who define their lifelong commitment to a revolutionary art in which politics and theatre are inseparable. Read More »

Pascal Hofmann & Benny Jaberg – Daniel Schmid – Le chat qui pense (2010)

Jaberg and Hofmann’s film takes us on a cinematic journey through the life and work of Daniel Schmid, one of the most unusual artists within Swiss film. Born into a hotelier family of the 1940s in the village of Flims, surrounded by snow covered mountains, visited by exotic guests from around the world, Daniel Schmid always was a dreamer. The young filmmakers offer a mysterious kaleidoscope of people and places related to the director. Even as a child, Daniel Schmid knew that there was a hidden world, caught between reality and imagination. Read More »

Barbara Hammer – Nitrate Kisses (1992)

Nitrate Kisses explores images of lesbian and gay culture in this first feature-length film by Hammer, a pioneer of lesbian cinema. Archival footage from the first gay film in the U.S., Lot in Sodom (1993), by James Sibley Watson and Melville Webber, as well as footage from German narrative and documentary films of the ’30s are interwoven in this multi-faceted construction. Questions of a forbidden and invisible history of a marginalized people are put in context by the contemporary sexual activities – photographed by Hammer – of four gay and lesbian couples. Read More »

Hans Günther Pflaum et al. – R.W. Fassbinder – Criterion Bonus Disk (1993)

This is an excellent hour-and-a-half documentary overview of Fassbinder’s career. For those new to the director, this is the perfect starting place (perhaps even before watching the films). Read More »

Leilah Weinraub – Shakedown (2018)

SHAKEDOWN chronicles explicit performances in an underground lesbian club in Los Angeles. The story functions as a legend where money is both myth and material. Cumulatively, questions arise about how to diagram the before and after of a utopic moment. Directed by Leilah Weinraub. Read More »

Pierre Barougier & Jean-Pierre Pozzi – Ce n’est qu’un début AKA Just a Beginning (2010)

“Just A Beginning” follows a nursery school class for a period of two years. But this is a very unusual class as the children, aged three to five study… philosophy! Seated in a circle around a ritually lit candle, the children, in a fresh, funny and sometimes merciless manner, approach the universal subjects of love, power, difference, growing up, death etc. Little by little the philosophy workshop becomes a privileged moment where each child reflects on the words of the other, learns how to listen and to build a discourse. From now on they will be able to think for themselves! With their emotions, their unusual expressions and their contradictions, the children of this nursery school deliver a single testimony on an innovative experiment. “Just A Beginning” is the fabulous true story of a school with an eye on the future. Read More »

Raoul Peck – I Am Not Your Negro (2016)

In 1979, James Baldwin wrote a letter to his literary agent describing his next project, “Remember This House.” The book was to be a revolutionary, personal account of the lives and assassinations of three of his close friends: Medgar Evers, Malcolm X and Martin Luther King, Jr. At the time of Baldwin’s death in 1987, he left behind only 30 completed pages of this manuscript. Filmmaker Raoul Peck envisions the book James Baldwin never finished. Read More »