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Monday May 31st, 9pm MT

(8pm PT / 10pm CT / 11pm ET)

Memorial Day 2000

(Produced by Carly Ptak, Caleb Johnston & Twig Harper, 22 mins)

"Rarely ever does an object of found footage amass as notorious a reputation as MEMORIAL DAY 2000 has. What harmlessly began as one nameless camerawoman’s home video from within the respectable walls of an RV soon comes fully unhinged, plunging dimensions into a merciless spectacle of iconic American moral decay. Captured ambivalently over the course of a lost Memorial Day weekend at the turn of the millennium, we bear cringing witness to a frenzy of fiercely misguided Gen Xers as they swarm an ill-fated North Michigan meadow in triumphant barbarism surrounding a federal holiday for the most part neglected to be mentioned in the video itself.

 

Unfortunately enough for the cast members of their own depraved opera, what happens on a Midwest field doesn’t always stay on a Midwest field… Only to be ditched two years later at a nearby yard sale, the ever-incriminating document was discovered and salvaged by those of a breed poles apart. Incidentally falling into the dutiful hands of noise musicians, Twig Harper and Carly Ptak (of Nautical Almanac) guilefully took it upon themselves to publish VHS copies via their label, which they then regularly carried on merch tables at dingy basement shows, allowing the anthropological artifact to effectively circulate through VCRs across the nation. Eventually hobbling its way back to haunt the dismayed sinners on display, the undead tape was pulled from print upon desperate request — however not before earning conflicted cult status and a burning lawn chair in the found footage hall of fame." -Spectacle

Saturday May 22nd, 9pm MT

(8pm PT / 10pm CT / 11pm ET)

SUN RA birthday special!

A celebration of the 20th Century's most innovative and prolific artist, a being that traveled the spaceways, the longest running big band leader, a pioneer of Afrofuturism, a visionary intellectual and a poet: SUN RA aka Le Sony'r Ra!!! No Name Cinema will be broadcasting a nearly 3 hour program featuring local news appearances, late night tv performances, Robert Mugge's 1980 documentary 'A Joyful Noise' and finally the 1974 sci-fi film classic 'Space Is The Place' (Directed by John Coney, written by Sun Ra & Joshua Smith).

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Friday May 14th, 9pm MT

(8pm PT / 10pm CT / 11pm ET)
 

Wanda (Directed by Barbara Loden, 1970, 102 mins)

+ opening short film The Boy Who Liked Deer (1975, 18 mins)

Set amid a soot-choked Pennsylvania landscape, and shot in an intensely intimate vérité style, the film Wanda takes up with distant and soft-spoken Wanda Goransky (Barbara Loden), who has left her husband, lost custody of her children, and now finds herself alone, drifting between dingy bars and motels, where she falls prey to a series of callous men—including a bank robber who ropes her into his next criminal scheme (Michael Higgins). An until now difficult-to-see masterpiece that has nonetheless exerted an outsize influence on generations of artists and filmmakers, WANDA is a compassionate and wrenching portrait of a woman stranded on society’s margins. “I would not call it a love story,” Loden herself said, “It’s more a story of the lumpen, the poor drifters of the world who simply exist, leading totally pointless lives.” Shot on 16mm Kodak Ektachrome film stock with a crew of only 4 people, WANDA was written by, directed by and stars Barbara Loden (and post-production work was carried out at her home). Although it won 'Best Foreign Film’ at the 1970 Venice Film Festival, it wasn't well received in the United States upon initial release and didn't receive distribution or theatrical release. Unfortunately Loden was unable to find adequate funding to produce future films and WANDA is the only fully-realized example we have of her distinct and unique vision. Tragically, she died of cancer in 1980 at the age of 48 and her work fell into relative obscurity for many decades. The fate of WANDA took a significant turn in 2007, when restorers from the UCLA Film & Television Archive, who had been called in to go through the stacks at the Hollywood Film and Video Lab before its closure, serendipitously found and saved the original 16mm film rolls from destruction. Amazingly, the mislabeled film cans were only one day away from being sent to the city dump! Through a grant from the Scorsese Film Foundation with support from the Gucci fashion brand, the film was treated to both photochemical and digital restoration. The restored film then premiered at MoMA in 2010 and was picked up for distribution by the Criterion Collection in 2018. Wanda is now regarded as an American classic and has been referred to by John Waters as “the best feel-bad movie of all time”.

 

Although Loden was unable to create any other feature length films during her short lifetime, she was commissioned  in 1975 by the Learning Corporation of America to direct and produce two short films intended for educational purposes. One of those films is The Boy Who Liked Deer; an 18 min exploration into the destructive tendencies of young boys and the sometimes horrific results. In short order, young Jason and his friends smash windows, spray paint walls, set trash cans on fire and even destroy a signed, first edition copy of a e.e. cummings book! Unlike any other educational film I’ve witnessed, the eventual moral lesson is vague at best and the ending could easily be fleshed out into a safe-for-television horror flick ala “Tales From The Crypt”. The Boy Who Liked Deer is an excellent example of an artist’s ability to create something under commission that’s both personal and ambigious. Thank you to the fine folks at the Internet Archive for saving this relic from obscurity!

FURTHER READING: Ms. Loden regularly spoke of the Wanda Goransky character being an alternate extension of her own life trajectory. Raised in the Appalachian Mountains, she left home as a teenager and worked as a pinup model and dancer in New York City before becoming an actress, winning a Tony Award and eventually moving onto her own productions in film and theater. Although there’s still so much scholarly work to be done regarding her life and films, there have been a handful of great essays from the past ten years made available online. Also, in 2012 Nathalie Léger published a short, interesting book titled ‘Suite for Barbara Loden’ (published in the U.S. by Dorothy, a feminist publishing project) and for those interested in the technical aspects of film preservation, Ross Lipman’s article “Defogging Wanda” is a highly recommended read available through Criterion’s online magazine ‘The Current’.

 

LODEN on FILMMAKING:

"I really hate slick pictures…. They’re too perfect to be believable. I don’t mean just in the look. I mean in the rhythm, in the cutting, the music—everything. The slicker the technique is the slicker the content becomes, until everything turns into Formica, including the people." -Loden speaking to the NY Times, 1971

 

"I don't see how anybody can predetermine how their movie is going to turn out, or why anybody would want to, because it's a creative thing that is changing every day, and you're changing every day while you work on it. You start to make a movie, and when you finish it you'll be a different person."

–Loden speaking at the American Film Institute, 1971

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Friday April 30th, 9pm MT

(8pm PT / 10pm CT / 11pm ET)

American Movie (+Borchardt shorts)

(Directed by Chris Smith, 1999, 107 mins)

This late-90's snapshot of Milwaukee-based filmmaker/playwright/radio host Mark Borchardt was shot while he trudged through the trials, tribulations and ultimate success in making his low-budget, short film Coven. In a world that can sometimes feel overrun with sarcasm, short attention spans and vapid interests, Borchardt's steadfast commitment to art, literature and kind hearted positivity are a deeply felt inspiration. The night will begin with 30 mins of shorts including Borchardt giving a tour of Milwaukee on the Letterman show in 2000 and his short film 'I Blow Up' from 1982, then (for the real heads) the feature presentation will be followed by 36 minutes of footage not included in 'American Movie'!!!
 


FURTHER READING: Every week Mark hosts the radio show 'Cinema Tonight' at riverwestradio.com (with a trove of old episodes archived on soundcloud). Also, in 2017 he released 'The Dundee Project', a mid-length speculative documentary video centered around a UFO festival in Wisconsin. Copies are still available for purchase HERE

Move Outs Justin Clifford Rhody Carlog Gonzalez No Name Cinema

Saturday April 16th

24 hr looped broadcast

midnite-to-midnite

Move Outs

(Directed by Justin Rhody, 2020, 18 mins, Soundtrack by Carlos Gonzalez)

A drifting malaise searches the American interior for signs of life in this short

video composed from footage found on a VHS tape in a Midwestern alley.

Limited edition VHS/Digital of the film available through PHYSICAL Books & Media: physical.bigcartel.com/products

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Friday April 9th, 8pm MT

(7pm PT / 9pm CT / 10pm ET)

Touki Bouki

(Djibril Diop Mambéty, Senegal, 1973, 95 mins, Wolof with English subtitles)

"With a stunning mix of the surreal and the naturalistic, Mambéty paints a fractured portrait of the disenchantment of post-independence Senegal in the early 1970s. In this picaresque fantasy-drama, the disaffected young lovers Anta and Mory, fed up with Dakar, long to escape to the glamour and comforts they imagine France has to offer, but their plan is confounded by obstacles both practical and mystical. Alternately manic and meditative, Touki Bouki has an avant-garde sensibility characterized by vivid imagery, bleak humor, unconventional editing, and jagged soundscapes, and it demonstrates Mambéty’s commitment to telling African stories in new ways."

 


+ opening short films by Mati Diop (neice of Djibril Diop Mambéty)


Atlantiques

(France/Senegal, 2009, 16 mins, Wolof with English subtitles)

"A group of young men contemplate making the treacherous voyage by sea from Senegal to Europe in Mati Diop's debut short, a prelude of sorts to her 2019 acclaimed feature Atlantics which made her the first Black female director to win at Cannes."

In My Room

(France/Italy, 2020, 20 mins, French with English subtitles)

"Shot in her Paris studio during lockdown and based on recordings of her deceased grandmother, Diop has ingeniously created a melodramatic home movie that playfully blends themes of womanhood, transmission, and freedom. Commisioned as part of Miu Miu's "Women's Tales" series, In My Room plunges us into the poignant story of a woman at the twilight of her life. Living rooms become stages where life is performed. Windows become portals to the lives of others."

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Friday April 2nd, 8pm MT

(7pm PT / 9pm CT / 10pm ET)

 

THE SOURCE

(Directed by Maria Demopoulos & Jodi Wille, 2012, 98mins)

"The Source Family was a radical experiment in '70s utopian living. At its peak there were a core communal group of 150 people living together in a mansion in the Hollywood Hills. Their outlandish style, popular health food restaurant ('The Source', LA's first organic vegetarian restaurant), extreme psychedelic rock band ('Ya Ho Wa 13' which recorded 9 LPs most which were self-released in the mid-70's), and many members being beautiful women made them the darlings of Hollywood’s Sunset Strip; but their outsider ideals and the unconventional behavior of their spiritual leader, Father Yod, caused controversy with local authorities. They fled to Hawaii, leading to their dramatic demise. THE SOURCE provides an intimate, insiders’ view at this incredible group of people through their own archival photos, home movies, audio recordings, and contemporary interviews with members of the family."
 


+ Musical Introduction & Aftershow featuring a video of Djin Aquarian performing in 2015 and a full hour-long concert performance of Ya Ho Wa 13 live at the Empty Bottle in Chicago 2009!

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Saturday March 27th, 8pm MT

(7pm PT / 9pm CT / 10pm ET)

 

Cassavetes / Rowlands Weekend, Part 2:
 


Love Streams

(Directed by John Cassavetes, 1984, 141 mins)

In what would be Cassavetes final independent feature and penultimate directorial project, the film tells the story of a middle-aged brother (Cassavetes) and sister (Gena Rowlands) who find themselves relying on one another after being abandoned by their loved ones. The electric & brilliant husband & wife collaboration of Rowlands & Cassavetes give luminous, fragile performances as two closely bound, emotionally wounded souls who reunite after years apart. Exhilarating and risky, mixing sober realism with surreal flourishes, Love Streams is a remarkable film that comes at the viewer in a torrent of beautiful, erratic feeling. This inquiry into the nature of love in all its forms was the director-actor's last truly personal work."

 

+ “I’m Almost Not Crazy . . .” John Cassavetes: The Man and His Work

(60 min documentary directed by Michael Venntura)

"Filmed in 1983 during the production of Love Streams, but not released until after Cassavetes’s death in 1989, 'I'm Almost Not Crazy...' affords the viewer a rare, intimate glimpse into the great filmmaker’s process. Cassavetes directs a climactic scene set during a rainstorm, contends with the film’s menagerie of animal performers, and then talks about the importance on a movie set of never knowing what the next day will bring."

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Friday March 26th, 8pm MT

(7pm PT / 9pm CT / 10pm ET)

Cassavetes / Rowlands Weekend, Part 1:

 

A Woman Under The Influence

(Directed by John Cassavetes, 1974, 155 mins)

"Mabel Longhetti (Rowlands), desperate and lonely, is married to a Los Angeles municipal construction worker, Nick (Falk). Increasingly unstable, especially in the company of others, she craves happiness, but her extremely volatile behavior convinces Nick that she poses a danger to their family and decides to commit her to an institution for six months. Alone with a trio of kids to raise on his own, he awaits her return, which holds more than a few surprises."

"One of my fellow critics came out of a screening of A Woman... and said she was so affected, she didn’t know whether to cry or throw up. Well, sometimes that’s the choice life presents you with -- along with the laughs.” -Roger Ebert

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Friday March 19th, 8pm MT

(7pm PT / 9pm CT / 10pm ET)
 


Giuseppe Makes a Movie

(Directed by Adam Rifkin, 2014, 85 mins)

“DIY filmmaker, musician, and one-time teen actor Giuseppe Andrews has made over thirty experimental features. Set in some demented alternate universe, they are populated by real-life alcoholics and drug addicts, trash-talking senior citizens and residents of his trailer-park community dressed in cow outfits and costume-shop wigs, acting out booze-fueled vignettes of severe psychosis filtered through Giuseppe’s John Waters–meets–Harmony Korine–meets–Werner Herzog sensibility. Director Adam Rifkin creates a wildly surreal, outrageously funny, and strangely touching portrait of a true outsider artist as he follows Giuseppe and his ragtag troupe on the production of his latest two-day opus, GARBANZO GAS, capturing the compassion and camaraderie that binds this misfit community together.”

Ants

(Directed by Giuseppe Andrews, 2006, 27 mins)

"A young man who likes to rollerblade must face the fact that his father may be going insane through his years-long pursuit of making a documentary about ants."

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Saturday, March 6th, 8pm MT

(7pm PT / 9pm CT / 10pm ET)
 

Chameleon Street

(Directed by Wendell B. Harris Jr., 1989, 94 mins)
"Written by, directed by and starring Wendell B. Harris Jr., Chameleon Street is based on the amazing real life story of a con artist from Detroit named Doug Street who successfully impersonated professional reporters, lawyers, athletes, an exchange student and a gynecological surgeon (going so far as to successfully perform 36 hysterectomies before being caught!) After winning the Grand Jury Prize at Sundance in 1990, the film's distribution was suppressed and has not been widely seen outside of a limited home video release. Chameleon Street is 'one of the first films to examine how mellifluously race, class, and role-playing morph into the social fabric of America.'"

+ opening short: the collected works of Feed The Invisible

(including the *world premiere* of two new episodic installments!)

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Friday Feb 19th, 8pm MT

(7pm PT / 9pm CT / 10pm ET)

 

A mini-marathon of George Kuchar's 'Weather Diaries'!

 

Wild Night in El Reno, 1977, 6 min
Weather Diary 1, 1986, 81 mins
Weather Diary 3, 1988, 25 mins
Weather Diary 5, 1989, 38 mins

Weather Diary 6, 1990, 29 mins

Weather Watch, 1991, 16 mins


"A longtime luminary of underground cinema, George Kuchar has defined his own inimitable track, producing ingenious, low-budget melodramas at a stunningly prolific pace since he began shooting 8mm as a teenager in the Bronx. Like his extraordinary early films, the Weather Diaries' lack of pretension and gloss reveals a sincerely dramatic, funny and vulnerable perspective of the endlessly inspired and inspiring entity that is George Kuchar. After leaving New York City for San Francisco, Kuchar prolifically produced video diaries, the true quantity of which remains unknown. Varying in duration from five to ninety minutes, Kuchar's video diaries inflect his everyday life with familiar themes of Kuchar's oeuvre such as appetite, voluptuousness, the hilarity of bathos, campy appropriation, flatulence, the weather, urination, friendship, love, and the artificiality of cinema itself. The most well known of Kuchar's video diaries are his Weather Diary Series that chronicle Kuchar's annual pilgrimages to El Reno, Oklahoma, to observe tornadoes. In response to changes in media technology, Kuchar's video diaries increasingly applied the tactics of camp appropriation to the stuff of the digital age. Kuchar's later video diaries made use of consumer grade digital effects to generate something like postmodern psychedelia."

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Saturday Feb 6th, 8pm MT

(7pm PT / 9pm CT / 10pm ET)
 

KNIGHTRIDERS (Directed by George Romero, 1981, 146 mins)

+ opening short Mutinerango Sun (Directed by Andrew Storrs, 2015, 5 mins)

The program's theme, which also defines No Name Cinema's overarching vision, is best put in this bit of dialouge from Knightriders: "It’s tough to live by the code. I mean it’s real hard to live for something that you believe in. People try it and then they get tired of it, like they get tired of their diets, or exercise, or their marriage, or their kids, or their job, or themselves, or they get tired of their god. You can keep the money you make off this sick world, lawyer. I don’t want any part of it. Anybody who wants to live more for themselves, he doesn’t belong with us. Let him go out and buy some pimpy psychiatrist’s paperback that says it’s OK. Don’t ask me to say it’s OK. It’s not OK. […] You’ve got to fight for your ideals, and if you die, your ideals don’t die. The code that we’re living by is the troop. The troop is our code. I can’t let people walk on that idea.”