Welcome to the Northwest Film Center's 20th Edition of Reel Music. We've kept out eyes peeled over the last year for new works, plus a few reprises, for our annual celebration of music and film. Whatever your musical tastes, we hope that there is something in this years eclectic lineup to warm your soul and get your new year off on the right note. As always, our special thanks go to the Oregonian and Music Millennium for helping make it all happen. Enjoy.

JAN 3
FRI 7 P.M.
GUILD THEATRE
AMANDALA! A REVOLUTION
IN FOUR PART HARMONY

SOUTH AFRICA 2001
DIRECTOR: LEE HIRSCH Winner of the Audience Award and Freedom of Expression Award at the Sundance Film Festival, AMANDALA! ("Power to the people!") documents the history of freedom songs during the near half-century that South Africa suffered under apartheid. Notes one activist, "Because you can't beat these people physically, you've got to scare the shit out of them with songs." Most songs featured in the film became so popular that the government banned them along with the artists who sang them. Still, the freedom songs created an effective underground form of communication within prison boundaries and united a nation of oppressed citizens. Director Lee Hirsch combines an engaging mix of interviews with previously exiled activists and musicians along with archival footage of organized protests and performances featuring Abdullah Ibrahim, Sibingile Khumalo, Vusi Mahlasela, Miriam Makeba, Hugh Masekela, and Dolly Rathebe. (108 mins.)

JAN 4
SAT 7 P.M.
GUILD THEATRE
TRIBUTE
US 2001
DIRECTORS: KRIS CURRY, RICH FOX Watching a film about tribute bands may sound like a horrifying prospect, but in the hands of Curry and Fox, the expectation of camp and sub culture gawking gives way to a heartfelt, insightful and yes, often hilarious, look at the inexhaustible dream of fame, fortune and the simple joy of performing. Focusing on five LA bands: Larger Than Life (a tribute to KISS), Bloodstone (Judas Priest), Sheer Heart Attack (Queen), The Missing Links (The Monkees), and Escape (Journey), the directors capture two years of on and off-stage antics and trials in the music business, from bitter rivalries and creative differences, to psychopathic fans and equally bizarre performance venues. While the laughs sometimes come at the expense of the bands, for the most part the humor and humanity is shared by the subjects, who emerge with their passion and energy held high. Winner of the Golden Gate Award at the San Francisco Film Festival for Best Documentary. (89 mins.)

JAN 5
SUN 7 P.M.
GUILD THEATRE
MUDDY WATERS:
CAN'T BE SATISFIED

US 2002
DIRECTORS: MORGAN NEVILLE, ROBERT GORDON Morgan Neville, who has treated past Reel Music audiences to such fabulous films as SAM PHILLIPS: THE MAN WHO INVENTED ROCK AND ROLL and WORDS AND MUSIC BY LEIBER & STOLLER, and Robert Gordon, whose biography shares the same title, new film is on the inventor of electric blues, the great Muddy Waters. Fabulous performance footage, rare interviews and the commentary of many of the greats Waters worked with and influenced combine to tell the rich story of this towering Chicago blues legend. (75 mins.)
WITH
CHAMPION BLUES
US 2001
DIRECTOR: ALTHEA RODGERS CHAMPION BLUES follows a Los Angeles blues singing legend, Mickey Champion, from her roots in Lake Charles, La., to Los Angeles Central Avenue where she performed with Billie Holiday, Dinah Washington and doubled for Esther Phillips, to the California venues of the present day. The late Charles Brown saw Mickey Champion as one of the greatest powerhouse blues singers of all time. Ain t no one left that can sing like that when Mickey s gone, he said. CHAMPION BLUES tells the story of a woman who has been of service to the community she loves through her singing and her cooking. Ms. Champion was a cook for the Los Angeles Unified School District for 17-years.The documentary is intertwined with interviews with Mickey Champion, and some of her peers such as singers, Barbara Morrison, and Linda Hopkins, trumpet player, Clora Bryant, and singer Ray Brewster, as well as live performances by Ms. Champion. (48 mins.)

JAN 6
MON 7 P.M.
GUILD THEATRE
TOSCA
FRANCE 2001
DIRECTOR: BENOIT JACQUOT "This beautifully sung, exceptional film adaptation of one of Giacomo Puccini s greatest operas (whose most famous arias and duets are instantly recognizable to aficionado and amateur alike) features two of the hottest opera stars working today. Real-life couple Angela Gheorghiu and Roberto Alagna, whose love for one another adds a rare emotional depth to Puccini s gloriously romantic tale , portrays the star-crossed lovers. Ruggero Raimondi plays the evil Scarpia, and the trio excels under Antonio Pappano s superb musical direction. In this dazzling marriage of opera and cinema, Jacquot burnishes Puccini s luster."-LE MONDE (120 mins.)

JAN 7 - Visiting Artist
TUE 7 P.M.
GUILD THEATRE
LAST OF THE MISSISSIPPI JUKE JOINTS
US 2002
DIRECTOR: ROBERT MUGGE The newest addition to Mugge s diverse body of music films (SAXOPHONE COLOSSUS, COOL RUNNINGS, THE GOSPEL ACCORDING TO AL GREEN, DEEP BLUES, The KINGDOM OF ZYDECO) is a lively homage to one of the birth places of the blues Southern, mostly rural clubs that provided the showcase for black artists and the social center for many communities. Focusing on the Subway Lounge in Jackson, Mississippi, one of the last juke joints still operating, Mugge explores the history of these regional musical incubators and their decline while capturing performances of local house bands The King Edwards Blues Band and The House Rockers, and such blues legends as Chris Thomas, Alvin Youngblood Hart and Bobby Rush. Actor Morgan Freeman, himself a passionate devotee of the blues and owner of a blues club in Clarksdale, Mississippi, provides the narration. (88 mins.) Robert Mugge will introduce the film.


6JAN 8
WED 7 P.M.
GUILD THEATRE
THE MILES DAVIS STORY
BRITAIN 2001
DIRECTOR: MIKE DIBB Eleven years after his death in 1991, legendary trumpeter Miles Davis remains the best known and most influential jazz musician of the last 50 years. To mark what would have been his 75th anniversary, British television s Channel 4 commissioned this engrossing portrait that explores the evolution of the man and his music from his East St. Louis roots to rock-like international stardom. Interweaving rare interviews and brilliant performances from over forty years with the memories of friends, family, ex-girlfriends and stellar musical associates, Dibb reveals a singular creative odyssey fractured by racism, illness, drug addiction and brushes with the law. (124 mins.)

JAN 10
FRI 7 P.M.
GUILD THEATRE
SOUND OF BRAZIL
GERMANY/FINLAND 2002
DIRECTOR: MIKA KAURISMAKI Take Buena Vista Social Club, pump the volume up to 11 (Spinal Tap style), and crank the color beyond garish. This musical road movie is a 2,500 mile journey of discovery into the musicians, singers and dancers in Rio de Janeiro, Pernambuco and Bahia three Brazilian states that symbolize Brazils musical diversity and history. From live concert footage to spontaneous recordings on gritty back streets, Sound of Brazil offers much more than the familiar rhythms of bossa nova and samba. Starting in infancy, the daily staple of music is built on a rich history that embraces indigenous Indo populations as well as influences from Africa, Portugal and Arab nations. Kaurismäkis (TIGRERO, LA WITHOUT A MAP) spirited road trip is as free and spontaneous as the music itself. (85 mins.)

JAN 11 - Visiting Artist
SAT 7 P.M.
GUILD THEATRE
BREATH CONTROL:
THE HISTORY OF THE HUMAN BEAT BOX

US 2002
DIRECTOR: JOEY GARFIELD "Beatboxing is the art of making sounds with the mouth that are normally made by machines. The human beat box is one of the key elements in the development of Hip Hop culture, along with Dj-ing, Graffiti, Breakdancing, and MC-ing. Its contribution has been largely overlooked, as has the fun, expressive, human, and spontaneous dimension of Hip-Hop that it represents. Garfield uses interviews, live performances, archival footage, and animation to bring to light this important ingredient of Hip Hop's identity. With the help of Beat Box pioneers Doug E. Fresh, Biz Markie and The Fat Boys, the documentary traces the art form from its basic beat beginnings in the 1980s to its present day multi-layered, polyrhythmic figureheads such as Rahzel, Scratch of the Hip Hop group The Roots, and Zap Mama. Breath Control is a half-historical, half-tutorial look at humans as actual instruments. This is the real Hip-Hop: no turntables, no band, and no type of mechanical devices. Just the mic in my hand" - Rahzel, the Godfather of Noize.(80 mins.) Co-filmmaker Jacob Craycroft will introduce the film.

JAN 11
SAT 9 P.M.
GUILD THEATRE
LOS ZAFIROS:
MUSIC FROM THE EDGE OF TIME

US 2002
DIRECTOR: LORENZO DESTEFANO "In the wake of the Cuban Missile Crisis, while missiles and wrath were trained on Havana, a group of musicians from the Cayo Hueso district came together as Los Zafiros (The Sapphires) with a singing style that took Cuba and much of non-US western world by storm. Stars trapped in a parallel universe of pop, they hit the big time in Moscow, Minsk, Paris and Warsaw, but not America, inspiration to their unique musical formula. A combination of doo-wop, r&b, Calypso, rumba, bossa nova and other Latin American dance music, the Zafiros developed a sound and style much like The Platters and other vocal quintets of the 50 s and 60's. Returning to Cuba for the first time in 13 years, founder Miguel Cancio reunites with the only other surviving member of the group, Manuel Galbån. The ensuing trip reveals the still legendary status the have in their home neighborhood of Cayo Hueso, and the tragic lives and early deaths of the groups other 3 members, and through rich film clips and recording, their brilliant harmonies"-NORTH BY NORTHWEST. (87 mins.)

JAN 12 - Visiting Artist
SUN 7 P.M.
GUILD THEATRE
JIMMY SCOTT: IF YOU ONLY KNEW
US 2002
DIRECTOR: MATTHEW BUZZELL 77-year-old jazz vocal legend Jimmy Scott's distinctive voice is able to effortlessly caress high notes in a range that no normal adult male singer should ever expect to reach. But Scott's vocal range is the result of a hereditary condition that kept his body and voice from developing beyond boyhood. Scott is no mere freak of nature however; it's his masterful command of his vocal instrument, his worldly wise sense of phrasing a lyric and breathtakingly dramatic sense of time that has left critics and fans alike grasping at superlatives for over five decades. JIMMY SCOTT: IF ONLY YOU KNEW is a profoundly moving portrait of Scott through a look at his personal and professional hardships and eventual triumphs. Concert footage, interviews with Scott, family, friends, bandmates, and scholars offer a detailed view of the artist. (77 mins.) Matthew Buzzell will introduce the film.

JAN 15
WED 7 P.M
GUILD THEATRE
I AM TRYING TO BREAK YOUR HEART
US 2002
DIRECTOR: SAM JONES What started out as a humble 16mm black-and-white documentary look at the making of alt-country rock band Wilcos' fourth album, Yankee Hotel Foxtrot, felicitously became an absorbing chronicle of Reprise Records rejection of Foxtrots "uncommercial" sound, as well as the albums subsequent critical success at a new label, and the bands ultimate dissolution. Award-winning photographer Jones brings compelling immediacy to one of the most discussed music industry stories of recent years. The films style recalls the direct cinema techniques and energy of rockumentaries like DON'T LOOK BACK. (90 mins.)

JAN 16
THU 7 P.M.
GUILD THEATRE
HONEYBOY
US 2002
DIRECTOR: SCOTT L. TARADASH "'Blues ain't nothing but a lowdown aching chill. You ain't never had them? People pray to God you never will...' How appropriate that a film telling the truth of the blues should be about a great talent who never had the breaks. Scott Taradashs atmospheric and music-laden biography of 87-year-old Mississippi Delta blues legend David "Honeyboy" Edwards (writer of "Sweet Home Chicago") tells the fascinating story of Edwards' life in the pre-civil rights era Deep South. One of the few remaining original practitioners of the acoustic Delta blues style, Edwards not only sings of hard times, he's lived them. Born in 1915, Edwards lived on the road from an early age, playing music in juke joints and hustling in the streets of Memphis and the rural South to escape the labors of sharecropping. Through his travels he played and toured with the greatest Delta bluesmen, many of who remained his friends and greatest musical influences, including Big Joe Williams, Charley Patton, Robert Johnson, and Little Walter Jacobs. Interwoven among his colorful storytelling and raw guitar and vocal performances are appearances by B.B. King, Willie Foster and Waymon Meeks, who lend their own insights into the significance of the blues."-Vancouver Film Festival. (82 mins.)

JAN 17
FRI 7 P.M.
GIGANTIC:
A TALE OF TWO JOHNS

US 2002
DIRECTOR: A.J. SCHNACK "Welcome to the strange and poetic planet of They Might Be Giants, the Brooklyn-based alt-pop duo that uses answering machines, dark lyrics and bouncing melodies to make a little birdhouse in your soul. The twenty-year story begins with John Flansburgh and John Linnell meeting as junior high school students in Lincoln, Massachusetts the rest, as they say, is history. In addition to a concert given for the film, Schnack weaves appearances by Frank Black (Pixies), Mark Hoppus (Blink 182), author Dave Eggers, Conan O Brien, Jon Stewart, Ira Glass (This American Life) and Janeane Garofalo to fashion a compelling case for their important influence on the alternative movement. Dry wit rules, sharp left turns are encouraged, absurd running jokes abound, and a goofy, vaguely avant-garde aesthetic colors the whole thing while remaining utterly accessible to anyone interested in the idea of a couple of whip-smart wise-guys playing whimsical pop songs."-THE BOSTON GLOBE (102 mins.)

JAN 18
SAT 7 P.M.
GUILD THEATRE
SUPER 8 STORIES
BY EMIR KUSTURIC
A
GERMANY 2001
DIRECTOR: EMIR KUSTURICA Emir Kusturica is best know for his fiction films (UNDERGROUND, BLACK CAT, WHITE CAT, TIME OF THE GYPSIES) and as an actor (THE WIDOW OF ST. PIERRE). For the past fifteen years, he has played bass with The No Smoking Orchestra, a gypsy techno-rock band that uses violins, saxophones and accordions, as well as electric guitars and drums. The melange is uniquely Slavic and intensely contemporary, prompting the prestigious Italian journal La Republica to observe, "A furious, merry carousel of notes is the key to the wild success of Emir Kusturica and his band: these are people who know how to make great music and great cinema." Kusturica documents the group via concert footage but, more to the point, he gives a real insider's view into the workings of a wild amalgamation of individuals who have come together to play in a kinetic, intensely popular band. Using Super-8 footage as a texture that matches the rough and ready sound of the group, this is a rollicking, hot concert film. (90 mins.)

JAN 18
SAT 9 P.M.
GUILD THEATRE
PLEASURE AND PAIN
US 2001
DIRECTORS: DANNY CLINCH, SAM LEE Combining shuddering, groove-laden funky soul and folky, handcrafted acoustics, singer songwriter Ben Harper has cultivated a cult following in the past decade. Pleasure & Pain is an intriguing and intimate portrait of the charismatic roots/rock musician, singer/songwriter Ben Harper. Harper, whose music is a vibrant fusion of rock, reggae, funk, blues and jazz, is a truly unique counterpoint to our modern-day, pre-fabricated pop bands. He and his band, The Innocent Criminals, have built an enormous following, not from videos or radio play, but through the word of mouth generated from their powerful concerts. Directed by popular rock photographer Danny Clinch, who has worked with such icons as Bruce Springsteen, Bob Dylan, and bands like Radiohead, Metallica, and the Beastie Boys, this remarkable first film follows Harper as he tours across the US and Europe. (92 mins.)

JAN 19
SUN 4 P.M.
GUILD THEATRE
RICHARD RODGERS:
THE SWEETEST SOUND

US 2001
DIRECTOR: ROGERSHERMAN A celebration of Rodgers's music and an investigation into the genius of a composer, whose melodies emerged from a "fundamental River of Sadness." With, among others, Julie Andrews, Diahann Carroll, Celeste Holm, John Macueri, Maureen McGovern, Trevor Nunn, Billy Taylor, Andrew Lloyd Webber, and Rodgers's daughters, Linda and Mary. (115 mins.)

JAN 22
WED 7 P.M.
GUILD THEATRE
CHICO HAMILTON: DANCING TO A DIFFERENT DRUMMER
GERMANY/HUNGARY 2002
DIRECTOR: JULIAN BENEDIKT Julian Benedikt s (BLUE NOTE: A STORY OF MODERN JAZZ, JAZZ SCENE) is a lovingly researched exploration of the jazz life of Chico Hamilton from his early years performing with his school buddies Dexter Gordon and Charles Mingus, through the orchestras of Count Basie and Duke Ellington, his time with the legendary Gerry Mulligan Quartet, which he helped put together with Chet Baker in the late 50s. In addition to a treasury of live footage, the film features interviews with a gallery of Chico Hamilton s peers and fans including the Rolling Stones Charlie Watts who originally played under the name Chico Watts to express his admiration for his hero. Throughout the film the key interviews with Hamilton are conducted by Roman Polanski (Hamilton scored Polanski s 1966 film, REPULSION). Benedikt salutes Hamilton s current group, Euphoria, documenting a complete performance of the epic composition, Sculpture. (82 mins.)

JAN 24
FRI 7 P.M.
GUILD THEATRE
RAVI SHANKAR: BETWEEN TWO WORLDS
US/FRANCE 2001
DIRECTOR: MARK KIDEL The raga and you become one, says eloquent 82-year-old Indian sitar player, composer and international ambassador Ravi Shankar. Following Shankar from California to India aound the time of his 80th birthday, British director Mark Kidel s serene, informative and uplifting portrait traces this legend s life from the days of his Brahmin upbringing and introduction to the arts as a child in Paris to musical education under Ustad Baba Allaudin Khan and collaborations with filmmaker Satyajit Ray and fellow musician Yehudi Menuhin. An incalculable influence on such key musicians as John Coltrane and George Harrison and an international star, Shankar explains that his creativity an ecstasy that cannot be explained. Kidel s quiet, joyful profile, leavened with rare and fascinating newsreel and film clips, comes inspiringly close. (89 mins.)

Thank you to Timbuktunes World Music for sponsoring this film.


JAN 24
FRI 9 P.M.
GUILD THEATRE
JOHN CALE: BEAUTIFUL MISTAKE
US 2000
DIRECTOR: MARC EVANS John Cale has been a driving force in New York's avant-garde music world since he left his native Wales in the 1960s. Cale was co-founder of The Velvet Underground and has produced works by such artists as Nico, Patti Smith, The Stooges, and Brian Eno. BEAUTIFUL MISTAKE documents Cale's return, at age 58, to his homeland to collaborate with a variety of emerging Welsh artists, including Catatonia, Super Furry Animals, and James Dean Bradfield (of Manic Street Preachers). Shot in Cardiff, the film mixes performance footage with montages showcasing the daily poetry of this great city. (75 mins.)

JAN 25
SAT 7 P.M.
WHITSELL AUDITORIUM
FREEDOM HIGHWAY
IRELAND 2001
DIRECTOR: PHILIP KING, NUALA O CONNOR Music is as much a means of inspiration as it is one of expression, and there is much to be inspired by in the "songs of resistance and liberation" discussed and performed in Philip King s s eloquent tribute. Tibetan singer Yungchen Lhamo's heartrending a cappella siren song; June Tabor's rendition and explanation of "Lili Marlene"; Ani DiFranco, Emmylou Harris, and Irish singer Karan Casey singing Woody Guthrie even the Soweto String Quartet playing classical music becomes a political act, simply because black people were told they couldn't play these instruments. Others affirming song as a powerful motivating force in the last century s fight against social injustice include Elvis Costello, Billy Bragg, The Blind Boys of Alabama, Pete Seeger, Tom Waits, Los Lobos. The archival images of soldiers, migrant workers, and civil rights marchers, and the tributes to Guthrie, Paul Robeson, and slain Chilean songwriter Victor Jara are stirring reminders that you can take away the singer, but you can't silence the song. (90 mins.)

JAN 29
WED 7 P.M.
GUILD THEATRE
DEVIL GOT MY WOMAN (BLUES AT NEWPORT 1966)
US 1966
DIRECTOR: ALAN LOMAX On the occasion of the 1966 Newport Film Festival, legendary folk and blues musicologist Alan Lomax built (off site) a make-shift juke-joint a special environment in which to spontaneously film many of the blues greats assembled for the Festival. His calculation resulted in a remarkable time-capsul of fine performances and conversation by seminal bluesman in an unusually relaxed moment. In the house: Howlin Wolf, Son House, Bukka White, Skip James and a host of others. (60 mins.)
WITH
SWEET OLD SONG
US 2002
DIRECTOR: LEAH MAHAN Howard Armstrong, first immortalized in Terry (CRUMB) Zwigoff's LOUIE BLUIE (1983) has been performing for most of his 91 years, ever since his father carved his first fiddle from a wooden crate. At the film's center are the two great loves of Howard's life: his music and artist Barbara Ward, age 60. Their two-decade romance has been a creative partnership yielding new work and an outpouring of memories. As they take on life's challenges, Howard and Barbara defy our most basic assumptions about what it means to grow older. (60 mins.)

JAN 30 31
THU 7 P.M. FRI 7 P.M.
GUILD THEATRE
PLASTIC PEOPLE OF THE UNIVERSE
CZECH republic 2001
DIRECTOR: JANA CHYTILOVA As Lou Reed points out at the beginning of Czech filmmaker Jana Chytilova's intriguing film, it's hard to conceive of a situation in which song lyrics could get you thrown in prison and harder to imagine one in which the fate of a country is stirred by a rock-and-roll band. But for all the lip service paid to rock-and-roll revolutionaries, few groups can match the sheer courage of The Plastic People of the Universe, quite possibly the most politically significant, virtually unheard-of rock band in history. Named after a Frank Zappa lyric, the original line-up assembled in the fall of 1968, not in response to the Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia, bassist and founding member Milan Hlavsa insists, but to the release of the Velvet Underground's groundbreaking first album. The Velvets remained a seminal influence on the P.P.U., who combined their poetic rock minimalism with the more free-form jazz and blues of Captain Beefheart, Zappa and the Fugs. A true celebration to rock and revolution. (90 mins.)

JAN 31
FRI 7 P.M.
GUILD THEATRE
TOM DOWD AND THE LANGUAGE OF MUSIC
US 2002
DIRECTOR: MARK MOORMAN Mormans new film profiles the work of legendary music producer/recording engineer Tom Dowd. A charismatic man who has seemingly fit many lives into one lifetime, the recently deceased Dowd entered the recording industry in the late 1940s and quickly became the brilliant, best-kept secret in the business. His half-century of extraordinary music included everything from classic rock n roll (Coasters, Drifters, Bobby Darin, Big Joe Turner), to jazz recordings (John Coltrane, Thelonius Monk, Dizzy Gillespie, Charles Mingus), 60s era hits (Sonny & Cher, Young Rascals, Buffalo Springfield), the soul sounds of Stax Records in Memphis (Otis Redding, Sam & Dave, Booker T. & the M.G.s), live recordings at Winterland (Cream) and the Fillmore East, as well as over thirty years worth of hits at Criteria Studios in Miami (Rod Stewart). In addition to performance footage and in-studio insight into what goes on in the recording process, interviews with legends Ray Charles, Eric Clapton, the Allman Brothers Band, Aretha Franklin, Les Paul, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Barry Gibb, Phil Ramone, and Ahmet Ertegun fashion the portrait of a man who eloquently speaks a universal language. (90 mins.)

FEB 1
SAT 7 P.M.
GUILD THEATRE
LA TROPICAL
US 2002
DIRECTOR: DAVID TURNLEY Aficionados call it the best dance hall in the world. But you won t find it in any travel brochure. The Salon Rosado at La Tropical is the club where generations of working class Cubans of color have gathered for dance and romance. Stunningly photographed, Turnley s film is a sensual and visually elaborate depiction of this exceptional locale, which according to New York Times music critic Peter Watrous, "seems as if it's going to levitate with the joy of the Cuban soul." The film captures the pulsating rhythms of the bands that inspire the dancers. Among them are the Grammy Award-winning Los Van Van, the tough, young group Son Candela, the astonishing vocal "girl singing group" La Caro Band and Charanga Habanera. A vibrant celebration of music, dance and community, famed music documentarian Albert Maysles has called LA TROPICAL "the most human, dynamic, and liberated documentary ever shot in Cuba." (91 mins.)

FEB 1
SAT 9 P.M.
GUILD THEATRE
KINKY FRIEDMAN: PROUD TO BE AN ASSHOLE FROM EL PASO
NETHERLANDS 2002
DIRECTOR: SIMONE DE VRIES With commentary by Lyle Lovett, Bill Clinton and others, this documentary follows Texas troubadour and wisecracking author Friedman's outrageous trajectory from his first stage show at the age of 13 to the L.A. years (with pals Tom Waits and Iggy Pop) to his current station as mystery writer and pure-bred Texas bon vivant. "Van Gogh, Oscar Wilde, Jesus Christ, Lenny Bruce those are the people I identify with," says Friedman, and by the end of de Vries' doc, you realize this crazy Jew fits right in among those other iconoclastic luminaries. (54 mins.)
WITH
ALMOST ELVIS
US 2001
DIRECTOR: JOHN PAGET Images of Elvis , the pinnacle of the Elvis impersonator s art, is an annual cutthroat competition in Memphis to determine the world s finest Elvis (almost). Paget s cheeky documentary plumbs the dedication, desire and devotion of Elvis fandom, specifically a half dozen impersonators hungry for the spotlight. Irv Cass has been runner-up twice. He s determined to make it third-time-lucky or hang-up his jumpsuit. The competition is fierce. . . and peculiar: Quentin Flagg, child Elvis, a paperboy by day, The King by night; Doug Church, playboy Elvis who owes his charm to a pair of stick-on sideburns he keeps in a special case; Robert Washington, the competition s only black Elvis; Ginger, lady Elvis; and of course, a few Japanese Elvises. Working through cosmetic surgery, outrageously expensive costumes, blue suede shoes and bad Karate moves, the contestants circle for the final showdown and the title of America s No. 1 hunk-a hunk-a burnin love. (66 mins.)

FEB 2
SUN 7 P.M.
GUILD THEATRE
DENIS A. CHARLES: AN INTERRUPTED CONVERSATION
US 2002
DIRECTOR: VERONIQUE N. DOUMBE If it's true that jazz music represents being triumphant in the face of adversity, then Denis Charles is the perfect jazz musician. Born in the Caribbean, sent to his mother in New York at a young age, by a well meaning father, who snuck off the plane once Denis was secured, Denis Charles sustained a diverse and nomadic career. In his early days he anchored legends like Cecil Taylor, Steve Lacy, Don Cherry, and Jimmy Giuffre (who stopped using a drummer when Denis left). His later years, like some other brilliant New York musicians (Charles Gayle for one) were spent homeless, surrounding himself with young creative musicians (such as Susie Ibarra, seen performing a marvelous duet with Charles) who admired his gentle spirit, and fierce devotion to his craft. "DENIS A. CHARLES: AN INTERUPTED CONVERSATION perfectly captures the humor and sweetness of this fearless musician, who, it can be said, literally played for his life." - SOUND UNSEEN. (75 mins)

FEB 6
THU 7 P.M.
GUILD THEATRE
HILLBILLIES IN HOLLYWOOD
US 1927 1963
DIRECTORS: VARIOUS Tonight we welcome film archivist Dennis Nyback for a program of rare musical moments drawn from personal collection of music on film. Included in the program are vintage performances by Bob Wills, Johnny Cash, Carl Perkins, Jimmie Rodgers, Hank Williams Jr. (at 14!), and a dozen other country, rockabilly, and even Hawaiian musicians. (90 mins.)

FEB 6
THU 7 P.M.
WHITSELL AUDITORIUM
KARMEN GEI
SENEGAL 2001
DIRECTOR: JOSEPH GAI RAMAKA "Carmen is a myth, but what does Carmen represent today? Where do Carmens love and freedom stand at the outset of the 21st century? Therein lies my films intent, a black Carmen, plunged in the magical and chaotic urbanity of an African city." Adapting Bizet’s famous opera about love and freedom to Dakar, Senegal with an enchanting explosion of color, pulsing Senegalese music and dance, and smoldering sexual passion, Ramaka sets the story in the underworld of smugglers. After seducing Angelique, the warden, Karmen escapes the all-women penitentiary and returns to her world of crime, possessed with the power to command all with her magnetic spirit. Dancer Djeinaba Diop Gai is riveting as the sensual outlaw queen willing to break the rules and risk her life to preserve her freedom. The first African Carmen and, arguably, the first African filmed "musical," Gaï Ramaka employees the music and choreography of Doudou N'Diaye Rose's sabar drummers, Julien Jouga's choir, El Hadj Ndiaye's songs and Yandé Coudou Sène's prophetic voices, woven together with a contemporary jazz score by saxophonist Davis Murray. (86 mins.)

FEB 7
FRI 7 P.M.
GUILD THEATRE
CHARLIE “BIRD” PARKER 1920-1955
NORWAY 1989
DIRECTOR: JAN HORNE Produced by the Norwegian Broadcasting Corporation, Jan Horne’s documentary series on the life of jazz saxophonist Charlie Parker is the definitive chronicle of his remarkable life. Divided into four chronological chapters, each features film clips and interviews that bring to life his brilliant career. Part 1, Now s the Time, examines Parker’s early years in Kansas City and his impact on fellow musicians (Dizzy Gillespie, John Lewis, Flip Phillips) after he came to New York in the 1940s. Part 2, "Just Friends," centers on the New York years and his collaborations with Red Rodney, Max Roach, Roy Haynes and others. Part 3, What Is This Thing Called Love, follows Parker to the West Coast and his collaborations with Chet Baker, Bud Powell and Thelonius Monk. Part 4, Autumn in New York, explores his broader artistic search with the help of composer Edgar Varése and painter Harvey Cropper and the overview of his life through the eyes of Chan Parker and others. (3 hrs.)

FEB 8
SAT 7 P.M.
GUILD THEATRE
BLUEGRASS JOURNEY
US 2002
DIRECTOR: RUTH OXENBERG In the tradition of WOODSTOCK and JAZZ ON A SUMMERS DAY, BLUEGRASS JOURNEY weaves together extended performances, behind the scenes interviews and laid back event ambiance to celebrate one of America’s great musical genres. Set largely at the Grey Fox Blugrass Festival in upstate New York, Oxenberg’s affectionate portrait celebrates musical virtuosity, audience dedication and a fine time being had by all. Among the performers caught in concert and workshop settings are The Del McCoury Band, Tim O’Brien, Jerry Douglas, Peter Rowan, Tony Rice, Rhonda Vincent, Nickel Creek and a host of others. (90 mins.)

FEB 8
SAT 9 P.M.
GUILD THEATRE
VELVET GOLDMINE
US 1998
DIRECTOR: TODD HAYNES “This witty, evocative re-creation of the heady days of glam rock is loosely structured on the lines of a CITIZEN KANE-style flashback narrative, with a journalist (Christian Bale) sent back from New York to Britain to investigate, ten years after, the disappear ance of Bowie-like star Brian Slade (Jonathan Rhys Meyers) after an onstage assassination is revealed to be a hoax. Partly a film a clef which translates real-life events and personalities into a dazzling fiction, partly an unsentimental celebration of an era of potentially pan-sexual liberation (complete with unexpected but fitting tribute to Oscar Wilde), and partly a Haynesian study of transgression, identity and the gulf between public and private image, it s superbly shot, edited and performed, and exhilaratingly inventive throughout.” —TIME OUT. (120 mins.) TODD HAYNES INVITED TO ATTEND.

FEB 9
SUN 7 P.M.
GUILD THEATRE
THE BALLAD OF THE BERING STRAIT
US/JAPAN 2002
DIRECTOR: NINA GILDEN SEAVEY To the casual listener, the music of Bering Strait is an exciting, satisfying blend of traditional country and bluegrass sounds with the sleek production and propulsive, rock-tinged arrangements found in contemporary pop. It's a distinct surprise to learn that most of the seven members of the band, who have been together for well over a decade, first met and played together when they were young music students in Obninsk, Russia. How Bering Strait got from Obninsk to Nashville (and then garnered their first major studio release) is the subject of Nina Gilden Seavey’s beguiling The Ballad of Bering Strait. The determined Russian teenagers never lose sight of their goal to make their music in America. (98 mins.)