This week, cash in your change jar because you’re gonna need it for the screening of this lost Riot Grrrl film starring Kathleen Hanna. Also, pick from a bazillion or so documentaries this year at Doc NYC 2015, and more. Read on, friends.
In Search of Margo-Go
Wednesday, Nov. 4 at DCTV, 87 Lafayette Street, Lower East Side: after-party, $25; screening, $100; +VIP reception, $250
If you’re a super fan and if you can afford it, which is a lot of ifs we know, you should definitely check out this screening of In Search of Margo-Go, Jill Reiter’s “lost” Riot Grrrl short starring Kathleen Hanna. It’s named for Margo-Go of The Go-Go’s, who (according to this Vice interview) was living a few blocks away from Jill at an East Village squat in the early ’90s. The New York City-based filmmaker– whose other films (Frenzy among them) also starred people involved in the Riot Grrrl movement– cast herself and Hanna in this vividly colorful, 16 mm mini-film (Kim Gordon also makes a cameo appearance) set in the ’80s New York City new wave scene, what Jill described to Vice as “the golden era of nightlife.” At the time, Hanna was crashing at Jill’s apartment and the two found they were very much creatively compatible. But Jill never finished the project, which is why Margo-Go was trapped in the vault, and never screened in front of an audience until last year’s Fringe Festival.
Proceeds from the screening will benefit Dirty Looks, organizer of the queer cinema festival now in its fifth year of existence. Tonight’s event includes a reading of the original screenplay by the likes of Seth Bogart and K8 Hardy. VIP ticket holders will have access to a fancy reception which will be DJ’d by JD Samson of Le Tigre, and everyone can attend the after party where Macy Rodman— the Bushwick drag queen who totally blew up after we interviewed her in 2013, just sayin– will perform something no doubt spectacular.
Doc NYC 2015
Thusday, Nov. 12 through Thursday Nov. 19 at IFC Center + other venues: $10 – $17 per screening
New York City’s annual documentary film festival is pretty straightforward: the latest in documentary filmmaking from all over the country and all over the world, but the programming itself has become anything but just-screenings. In its fifth year, Doc NYC offers lectures as well as an entire day devoted to programming for first-time filmmakers if that’s your bag. But the breadth of docs the fest includes in its lineup is what we’re most excited about. If you missed Amy, the Amy Winehouse documentary while it was in theaters, definitely catch that one (Thursday Nov. 12th, 8:30 pm at IFC and Tuesday Nov. 17th, 11:45 am at Bow Tie Chelsea) — it’s a heart-wrenching account of the R&B singer’s talent and fast rise to fame, but also her problems with addiction and the people in her life who exacerbated the problem, ultimately leading to her death at 27.
Black Panthers: Vanguard of the Revolution (Sunday, Nov. 15, 11:45 am at Chelsea Bow Tie and Monday, Nov. 16, 4:15 pm at Chelsea Bow Tie) is another must-see doc if you missed it while it was in theaters. This in-depth look at the Black Panther Party discusses it all: the good, the bad, and the incredibly stylish.
For a New York City-centric story, catch the delicately named Class Divide, a documentary about gentrification in New York City. Rather than tackle the unreasonably large issue, the filmmaker focused on a tiny portion of the city: the area surrounding one intersection in Chelsea, 10th avenue and 26th Street, home to low-income public housing and some of the city’s most expensive real estate.
Sunday, Nov. 1st (7:30 pm) through Thursday, Nov. 12 (10 pm) at Spectacle Theater: $5 at the door
OK, it’s hard to imagine how much more uncomfortable this movie can be in person. I’m sitting here from the relative safety of my desk and I’m already feeling deeply creeped out. After witnessing the Kennedy assassination on TV, a “totally normal” suburban family decides to hole up in their bomb shelter– I mean, who else could have been responsible for the President’s murder than a bunch of commies readying their tanks at the Canadian border? Well, this family wasn’t about to wait around to find out, that’s for sure.
Thirty years later, Mom and Dad are long dead from canned food-induced botulism and the kids have had ample time to, well, not grow up at all. Needless to say, they’re a pair of totally horrifying freaks, and having little or no memory of the outside world they’ve remained in the shelter this whole time. The film follows the oddball pair at what you’d might imagine to be a breaking point, zeroing in on their bizarre ways of communicating and freakish games.
Peggy Guggenheim: Art Addict
Friday, Nov. 6 through Thursday Nov. 12 at IFC Center: $14
Speaking of docs, here’s an awesome looking one about Peggy Guggenheim, a legendary and formative figure in the modern art movement in America and niece of Solomon Guggenheim (as in the New York City museum we all know and love). Her great grandson opened a gallery in Williamsburg recently, proving the family’s apparently unbreakable art lineage. Guggenheim was an heiress who spent her money not on luxury rides to Dubai on jets crewed by a team of teacup chihuahuas, but on hoards of fascinating modern art work that came to define the canon of the 20th century. Her massive art collection, known as the Peggy Guggenheim collection (duh), is now one of the biggest attractions in Venice and includes work by modernists and futurists of the Italian variety.
The documentary is based on an interview with Jacqueline B. Weld, Guggenheim’s biographer, which was actually the last interview she ever gave. For many years, the tapes were thought to be lost. (Yeesh, can you imagine?) Well, Weld found those tapes and escaped a permanent sense of inadequacy and self-hate in the process. The documentary foregrounds Guggenheim’s incredible eye for talent at its early stages, but also her private life and family history.