Monday, May 21, 2007

I'm begging you

Favorite Actor Monday can take a hike this week and possibly every week hereafter. I still have plenty of favorites, but I've run out of things to say. Instead, I want to implore, beg, cajole, coerce, persuade, convince, and plead with anyone who reads this blog and lives in Austin to see Charles Burnett's "Killer of Sheep" at the Alamo Drafthouse Downtown Wednesday night at 7 p.m. (if you didn't see it tonight, although feel free to see it again if you did). Burnett shot this film on weekends in 1973 with a cast of mostly nonprofessionals as his master's thesis for UCLA film school. He finally completed it in 1977. (It is worth noting that film schools once encouraged filmmakers to make art about, with, and for their communities as a means in itself and now churn out a supply of inconsequential douchebags whose goals are to get on "Entertainment Tonight" and become famous and wealthy alumni making bullshit for morons.) It was one of the first 50 films chosen for the Library of Congress Film Registry, and has never been officially released until this year due to a failure to clear music rights. It will be released on DVD later this year for the first time, along with his second feature, "My Brother's Wedding," and two shorts, "The Horse" and "When It Rains." When even our best new filmmakers seem to be obsessed with monosyllabic infantile indie rock breakups with their girlfriends, it's absolutely energizing and life-affirming to see a film with such modesty and ambition, an expansive and empathetic vision encompassing many lives and a community, an intelligent and organic feel for film language, and an artistic perspective not stuck up its own asshole. This film is poetry. It's beautiful and deserves to be seen by as many people as possible. Please go see it.


Spacebeer said...

Yes! Do go see this movie. And if you aren't in Austin or can't see it, make sure to rent it when it is released on DVD. You also won't go wrong renting Burnett's feature film To Sleep with Anger (1990).

Do it!

Krouchdog said...

I nearly shit a brick when I found out that the Ross here in Lincoln, Nebraska was going to show it. I was not disappointed in the least. It's really great.

steiger said...

i tried to post a comment about this the other night, but for some reason it didn't show up. upon reading your post, i immediately bought a ticket online and went to see it on wednesday night. i agree: it's remarkably beautiful.

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