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Film Series

Indie 80s

 
 
Jul 17—Aug 27, 2015
 
 
 
 
 
 
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BAMcinématek and Cinema Conservancy present this six week, 60+ film series spotlighting the independent films of the neglected decade between the golden age of 70s New Hollywood and the indie boom of the 90s. Exploring the textures of regional America and uncovering alternative histories to the supposed monoculture of the Reagan years, independent filmmakers of the 1980s offered up an edgy alternative to overblown Hollywood blockbusters and the straight-laced conservatism of the era.


 
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Indie 80s trailer

Get a taste of the vast scope of independent cinema showcased in BAMcinématek’s Indie 80s series, including breakthrough works by Spike Lee, David Lynch, Jim Jarmusch, and more.



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PAST EVENTS
Film
Hollywood Shuffle
 

This Hollywood satire takes aim at the industry’s depictions of African Americans.

Fri, Jul 17, 2015
 
 
Film
Stranger Than Paradise
 

Jim Jarmusch’s deader-than-deadpan comedy is arguably the quintessential 80s indie film.

Sat, Jul 18, 2015
 
 
Film
The Decline of Western Civilization Part II: The Metal Years
 

This outrageous documentary chronicles the heavy metal scene of the late 80s.

Sat, Jul 18, 2015
 
 
Film
Sidewalk Stories
 

This brilliantly inventive silent comedy is a modern day homage to Chaplin’s The Kid.

Sun, Jul 19, 2015
 
 
Film
Sherman's March
 

A filmmaker roams the South looking for love in this delightfully offbeat documentary.

Sun, Jul 19, 2015
 
 
Film
Heat and Sunlight
 

A photographer cracks up in this edgy psychodrama.

Mon, Jul 20, 2015
 
 
Film
Poto and Cabengo
 

This fascinating documentary follows two twin girls who developed their own language.

Tue, Jul 21, 2015
 
 
Film
Wildrose
 

A female miner contends with workplace sexism in this rarely seen, naturalistic drama.

Tue, Jul 21, 2015
 
 
Film
Les Blank Program
 

Blank pays tribute to the spirit and creativity of women with wide-set incisors and polka.

Wed, Jul 22, 2015
 
 
Film
Trouble in Mind
 

This subtly surreal neo-noir is part enigmatic thriller, part dark comic fantasia.

Wed, Jul 22, 2015
 
 
Film
Smooth Talk
 

A teenager has a life-altering encounter with a disturbing stranger in this dark drama.

Thu, Jul 23, 2015
 
 
Film
River's Edge
 

John Hughes meets David Lynch in this disturbing portrait of teenage alienation.

Fri, Jul 24, 2015
 
 
Film
A Nightmare on Elm Street
 

Freddy Krueger clawed his way into our collective nightmares with this horror milestone.

Fri, Jul 24, 2015
 
 
Film
Losing Ground
 

A married couple experience a reawakening on a summer idyll in upstate New York.

Sat, Jul 25, 2015
 
 
Film
Mala Noche
 

Gus Van Sant’s ravishing, dreamlike feature debut is a touchstone of New Queer Cinema.

Sat, Jul 25, 2015
 
 
Film
Los Sures
 

This invaluable time capsule captures the vibrant community of 1980s South Williamsburg.

Sun, Jul 26, 2015
 
 
Film
The Thin Blue Line
 

Errol Morris’ landmark documentary examines the case of a man wrongly convicted of murder.

Sun, Jul 26, 2015
 
 
Film
Matewan
 

This stirring historical saga dramatizes a 1920 coal miners’ strike in West Virginia.

Mon, Jul 27, 2015
 
 
Film
Lightning Over Braddock
 

This offbeat quasi-documentary is a portrait of a dying Pennsylvania steel town.

Tue, Jul 28, 2015
 
 
Film
The Ballad of Gregorio Cortez
 

Edward James Olmos stars as an outlaw in this complex revisionist Western.

Wed, Jul 29, 2015
 
 
Film
Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer
 

This skin-crawlingly disturbing shocker is one of the most controversial films of the 80s.

Wed, Jul 29, 2015
 
 
Film
Vigilante
 

Grindhouse auteur William Lustig serves up a crazily violent, pure-pulp thriller.

Thu, Jul 30, 2015
 
 
Film
Blank Generation
 

Punk icon Richard Hell stars in this grimy glimpse of New York’s punk underground.

Thu, Jul 30, 2015
 
 
Film
Will
 

A Harlem basketball coach struggles with heroin addiction in this gritty urban drama.

Mon, Aug 3, 2015
Member Monthly Screening
 
 
Film
Bell Diamond
 

Neglected auteur Jon Jost helmed this quietly intense work of social realism.

Mon, Aug 3, 2015
 
 
Film
Parting Glances
 

Steve Buscemi co-stars in this witty snapshot of New York’s 1980s gay community.

Tue, Aug 4, 2015
 
 
Film
True Love
 

This raucous anti-romance won the Grand Jury Prize at the 1989 Sundance Film Festival.

Wed, Aug 5, 2015
 
 
Film
Paydirt
 

Penny Allen’s (Property) 1981 thriller about Oregon winemakers who start growing pot.

Wed, Aug 5, 2015
 
 
Film
Bless Their Little Hearts
 

Charles Burnett wrote and shot this heartrending portrait of an African-American family.

Thu, Aug 6, 2015
 
 
Film
Day of the Dead
 

George Romero’s provocative finale to his groundbreaking Living Dead trilogy.

Fri, Aug 7, 2015
 
 
Film
Seventeen
 

This vérité 1983 documentary is a sobering depiction of a group of high school seniors.

Fri, Aug 7, 2015
 
 
Film
Blood Simple
 

The Coen brothers’ stylish Texas-set pulp thriller starring Frances McDormand and Dan Hedaya.

Sat, Aug 8, 2015
 
 
Film
Blue Velvet
 

Kyle MacLachlan, Isabella Rossellini, and Dennis Hopper star in David Lynch’s masterpiece.

Sat, Aug 8, 2015
 
 
Film
Swimming to Cambodia
 

Spalding Gray weaves a spellbinding tale in this one-man show directed by Jonathan Demme.

Sun, Aug 9, 2015
 
 
Film
Let's Get Lost
 

Bruce Weber’s Oscar-nominated documentary of jazz trumpeter Chet Baker.

Sun, Aug 9, 2015
 
 
Film
Landlord Blues
 

Tenant faces off against landlord in this ultra-rare throwback to the 1980s East Village.

Mon, Aug 10, 2015
 
 
Film
Vortex
 

Noir meets No Wave in this paranoid thriller starring cult icon Lydia Lunch.

Mon, Aug 10, 2015
 
 
Film
El Norte
 

A heartrending, humanistic look at the immigrant experience.

Tue, Aug 11, 2015
 
 
Film
Willie
 

Photographer Danny Lyon helmed this startlingly candid portrait of a New Mexico convict.

Wed, Aug 12, 2015
 
 
Film
A Flash of Green
 

This taut ecological thriller is a lost gem of regional independent filmmaking.

Wed, Aug 12, 2015
 
 
Film
My Brother's Wedding
 

Charles Burnett’s long-unseen follow-up to Killer of Sheep was this poignant neorealist drama.

Thu, Aug 13, 2015
 
 
Film
sex, lies, and videotape
 

Steven Soderbergh’s breakout hit paved the way for the indie boom of the 1990s.

Fri, Aug 14, 2015
 
 
Film
This Is Spinal Tap
 

This cult classic mockumentary chronicles the implosion of “one of England's loudest bands.”

Fri, Aug 14, 2015
 
 
Film
The Unbelievable Truth
 

Hal Hartley’s deadpan debut feature about an apocalypse-obsessed Long Island teen.

Sat, Aug 15, 2015
 
 
Film
Ms. 45
 

A mute rape victim wages war on Manhattan’s male population in Abel Ferrara’s classic.

Sat, Aug 15, 2015
 
 
Film
The Cosmic Eye
 

Animation visionary Faith Hubley explores the history of mankind.

Sun, Aug 16, 2015
 
 
Film
Route One/USA
 

Expat leftist filmmaker Robert Kramer’s epic road trip mosaic of 1980s America.

Sun, Aug 16, 2015
 
 
Film
Chan Is Missing
 

Wayne Wang’s arthouse sleeper hit study of Chinese-American identity.

Mon, Aug 17, 2015
 
 
Film
The Ties That Bind
 

Su Friedrich’s experimental meditation on memory, history, and the mother-daughter bond.

Tue, Aug 18, 2015
 
 
Film
Ashes and Embers
 

Ethiopian-American filmmaker Haile Gerima examines the black Vietnam vet experience.

Tue, Aug 18, 2015
 
 
Film
My Degeneration
 

Sleaze-punk auteur Jon Moritsugu serves up a no-budget blast of rock ‘n roll and raw meat.

Wed, Aug 19, 2015
 
 
Film
Who Killed Vincent Chin?
 

This riveting Oscar-nominated doc deconstructs the murder of a Chinese-American engineer.

Wed, Aug 19, 2015
 
 
Film
The Evil Dead
 

Bruce Campbell stars in Sam Raimi’s legendary low-budget occult splatterfest.

Fri, Aug 21, 2015
 
 
Film
Wild Style
 

This seminal hip-hop film captures the scene’s music and street art during its inception.

Fri, Aug 21, 2015
 
 
Film
Roger & Me
 

Michael Moore’s first film is a satirical and impassioned look at the decline of Flint.

Sat, Aug 22, 2015
 
 
Film
My Dinner with Andre
 

Wallace Shawn and Andre Gregory go head to head in Louis Malle’s cinematic experiment.

Sat, Aug 22, 2015
 
 
Film
She's Gotta Have It
 

Spike Lee’s watershed 1986 debut feature addressing black female sexuality.

Sun, Aug 23, 2015
 
 
Film
St. Clair Bourne Program
 

Two films by African-American film pioneer St. Claire Bourne.

Sun, Aug 23, 2015
 
 
Film
Personal Problems
 

Director Bill Gunn and writer Ishmael Reed teamed up for this satirical soap opera.

Mon, Aug 24, 2015
 
 
Film
Say Amen, Somebody
 

This uplifting documentary is a joyous look at American gospel music.

Tue, Aug 25, 2015
 
 
Film
Patti Rocks
 

This razor-sharp buddy comedy delivers a swift takedown of macho posturing.

Tue, Aug 25, 2015
 
 
Film
Sleepwalk
 

Sara Driver’s trancelike puzzle film is a surrealist’s delight.

Wed, Aug 26, 2015
 
 
Film
Alphabet City
 

Punk filmmaker Amos Poe directs this neon-lit, expressionistic gangster saga.

Wed, Aug 26, 2015
 
 
Film
Chameleon Street
 

This Sundance Grand Jury Prize winner chronicles the exploits of con man Douglas Street.

Thu, Aug 27, 2015