Yesterday, Anthology Film Archives announced that, for the first time in their 46-year history, big changes are coming to the institution in the form of an expansion to their East Village operations that will include a library and café.
Let’s be real, it’s been a sticky week. And since the frozen negroni machine has been broken at the Narrows for going on forever, you’re probably thinking, what’s the point of even leaving my fire-escape kiddie pool this weekend? There never is one, truth be told. But there’s something going down this weekend at Alphaville that could turn out to be the next best thing to soakin’ in a plastic tub filled with the champagne of public water and dribbles of your own pee.
Probably the best known film to come out of the I Am Eye scene opens with a view from the cameraman’s car as John Heyn and Jeff Krulik pull into a a sweaty asphalt parking lot full of Wayne’s World clones. “I’m ready to rock!” the spandex-clad kids with big hair exclaim un-ironically, throwing up devil horns and alternating between sloshing around beer bottles and back-bent air guitar. The next 15 minutes or so of Heavy Metal Parking Lot (1986) is nothing short of sheer brilliance and even though the film– which has won praise as “the original viral video” and “the Citizen Kane of wasted teenage metalness”– is approaching its 30th anniversary, it feels supremely right-now. In a lot of ways, this “sleeper” bootleg hit anticipated the kind of cheeky, ironic tone that today we see everywhere in art-making.
Likewise, I Am Eye, the DC-based “independent film forum” that ran from 1982 to 1991 out of a DIY venue called dc space, was a hotbed for underground filmmakers whose influence is still felt today, even if what they screened back then is seriously hard to find now. But for the first time in 25 years, the founders are gathering up their old reels and holding a screening/reunion at Microscope Gallery in Bushwick that opens this weekend.
Selfies have become so ubiquitous that if your Instagram feed can’t claim at least one, it’s safe to assume you’re the hideous victim of a Korean rubber face mask gone horribly wrong, or you’re so vain that turning a lens on yourself for an arms-length shot is totally out of the question. In art, that lens has been swapped out for an electron microscope, aimed squarely at the self, but penetrating far beyond the puckering duck face.
Sup guys? Stuff got a little out of hand last week with all those space films and so this time around we’re bringing you back down to earth. Though as always we’re keeping it weird. This week we’ve got surreal takes on film strips that have been sliced, diced, and “inappropriated.” Also in our lineup (which doesn’t include this week’s standout Tribeca Film Festival screenings; click here for those) is an account of the cray stuff that can happen when IRL begins to reflect art. So welcome back to hell, we’re glad you could join us once again.
The sun will come out tomorrow y’all, but that doesn’t mean our black-as-black hearts have grown any less cynical. We’ll never be wary of shutting ourselves inside and “catching” what I’ve heard people call “flicks,” as opposed to having face-to-face human interactions. Those are never as good as movies anyway, and the only thing you can “catch” from people are diseases. Am I right or am I right? That’s why we’re gracing you yet again with at least a handful of excuses to avoid that horrible social anxiety otherwise known as talking to people, particularly like a date or something. Imagine the horror! Hell is other people and movies are really the only thing that, once in a while, might trick us into thinking that’s a bunch of bull.