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The final weekly program (in our current form, anyway)


November 22 – December 20

Five films of agony, ecstasy, sensation and spectacle. For what is most likely our final weekly program we’re abandoning all restrictions of narrative and dialogue to focus on beauty, horror and the violent catharsis of transcendent cinema. Weekly on Wednesdays, all tix $10, 7:30 for 8PM start

Wednesday November 22
(1987, dir. Sam Raimi, 84min, English Language)

A perfect concoction of tonal extremes. A ridiculously sadistic and destructive piece. A glorious moment in the history of horror cinema. EVIL DEAD 2 is all of this and more. Arguably the finest outing in the storied history of ‘80s horror, Sam Raimi took a modest budget, some special effects up and comers, and many of the same group of friends that worked with him on the first film into the backwoods and emerged with a work that encapsulates all of Raimi’s mad genius. From slapstick comedy influences to classic German expressionism to Vaudeville timing to B movie earnestness, almost every facet of cinema is on display here in the finest of the medium’s forms, all packaged tightly into a bursting runtime that does not waste a single second in delivering this filmic extravaganza into the wide eyes and gaped mouths of the audience.
Wednesday November 29
(1928, dir. Carl Theodor Dreyer, 82min, Silent, French intertitles w/ English subtitles)

One of the true immortal works from the silent age of cinema, featuring an indelible performance from Maria Falconetti as Joan in one of her only surviving screen appearances. The juxtaposition of beauty and cruelty that director Carl Theodor Dreyer draws out with the haunting photography of the film have rarely if ever been replicated and almost certainly never bested, and for a silent film it’s impossible to deny that it speaks volumes. The pain and burden of Joan’s trial is rendered not in lascivious gore or overt violence but in the dread and disgust of the faces of her and her captors, and everything that one needs to know about Joan is trapped in the mesmerising eyes of Falconetti as she spells her suffering out on the screen.
Wednesday December 6
(1988, dir. Newt Arnold, 92min, English language)

The “true” story of Frank Dux, an elite soldier and martial artist who travelled to Hong Kong to compete in the illegal underground no-holds-barred tournament known as the Kumite, but that’s not really important. Plot, dialogue, narrative, none of these matter— what matters in this fevered white-guy-wanting-to-be-Bruce-Lee fantasy is sweat, muscle, bone and blood, bodies thudding into each other endlessly, five (5) montage sequences and screaming, screaming, screaming. Jean-Claude Van Damme does the splits, Bolo Yeung’s chest is as wide as an SUV and there’s something about friendship and honour in here but really the thesis of Bloodsport is that violence is sometimes not only necessary but very very cool.
Wednesday December 13
(1997, dir. Kirby Dick, 90min, English language)

How do you make the most out of a life with a deeply unfair measure of suffering? Bob Flanagan was an artist, author, and BDSM practitioner who lived with cystic fibrosis, and whose provocative explorations of pleasure, agony and performance were hugely influential on contemporary radical Queer and Crip sexual expression in art. He was also a really funny pervert who liked to nail his dick to a board, and this film highlights Bob’s humour (and love for his life partner in love and pain, Sheree Rose) and unstoppable drive to create in the face of death. Shot over several years with Flanagan’s full cooperation, this is a confronting, moving and intimate portrait of a very singular human being.

Audience note: This film contains graphic nudity and BDSM practices
Wednesday December 20
(1989, dir. Shinya Tsukamoto, 67min, Japanese language w/English subs)

Strap-on drills, synth delirium, abrasive percussion. A salaryman runs down a maniac on an isolated road and hides the body, his nightmares are only beginning. Shards of metal into flesh, writhing maggots, man becomes machine. Metamorphosis dreams, living metal, an unseen Tokyo industrial wasteland. An extraordinary visceral video & audio sensory overload, a landmark work of cyberpunk body horror, a bare-wire jolt directly into the brain, and quite simply one of my favourite movies of all time.