Flicker Alley Presents

MASTERWORKS OF AMERICAN AVANT-GARDE EXPERIMENTAL FILM 1920-1970

Flicker Alley and the Blackhawk Films® Collection, in cooperation with Filmmakers Showcase, premiere the newly restored collection of Masterworks of American Avant-garde Experimental Film 1920-1970 in a
4-disc Blu-ray/DVD Combo Edition.

Release Date: September 29, 2015

click to view the trailer

Complete list of all the films is here.

Flicker Alley and the Blackhawk Films® Collection, in collaboration with Filmmakers Showcase, are proud to present 37 films, restored to high-definition, from some of the foremost experimental filmmakers of the 20th century.

Masterworks of American Avant-garde Experimental Film 1920-1970
Deluxe Blu-ray/DVD Combo Edition

418 Minutes / US / M.S.R.P. $59.95
Produced by David Shepard / Curated by Bruce Posner
UPC: 6-17311-67909-4        ISBN: 1-893967-90-5

Commencing in 1920 with Charles Sheeler and Paul Strand’s creative collaboration on Manhatta, successive generations of experimental filmmakers and artists have worked in collaboration or alone to create a cinema capable of expressing dynamic unspoken concepts in totally abstract visual terms.

Included on this premiere collection of 37 films are the most acclaimed names of American avant-garde experimental filmmaking, including Charles Sheeler, Paul Strand, Fernand Léger, Dudley Murphy, Rrose Sélavy (Marcel Duchamp), Robert Florey, Slavko Vorkapich, Ralph Steiner, Jay Leyda, James Sibley Watson, Jr., Melville Webber, Emlen Etting, Oskar Fischinger, Joseph Cornell, Mary Ellen Bute, Ted Nemeth, Rudy Burckhardt, Francis Lee, Maya Deren, Alexander Hackenschmied, Helen Levitt, Janice Loeb, James Agee, James Broughton, Kenneth Anger, Ian Hugo, Anaïs Nin, Len Lye, Jim Davs, Hy Hirsh, Marie Menken, Francis Thompson, Hillary Harris, Bruce Baillie, George Landow, Lawrence Jordan, Jonas Mekas, Tom Palazzolo, Lawrence Janiak, Amy Greenfield, Phil Solomon, and Stan Brakhage.

To watch these films is to see the world anew through cinematic interventions: fast cutting, expressive camerawork, abstract animation, surrealistic collage, distorted and superimposed imagery, and many more extraordinary techniques. Essentially the filmmakers ask us to open our eyes and see, to permit the reception of pure sensations uninhibited by any complex web of predetermined associations dominant in mainstream Hollywood cinema.

Collected from archives around the world, and beautifully restored in high definition, the majority of vintage silent films in Masterworks of American Avant-garde Experimental Film 1920-1970 feature new musical scores from innovative composers Donald Sosin, George Antheil, Louis Siegel, William O. Smith, Gene Forell, Arthur Kleiner, Louis & Bebe Barron, Eric Beheim, Rodney Sauer, Gustavo Matamoros, Henry Wolfe and Phil Carluzzo.

Complete list of all the films is here.

Bonus Materials Include:

  • Seasons... (2002, dir. Phil Solomon, Stan Brakhage)
  • 2k restoration of Manhatta (1920-21, dir. Charles Sheeler, Paul Strand) with with 2008 Slovak Sinfonietta orchestral score by Donald Sosin and 2013 music score by Henry Wolfe and Phil Carluzzo. Honored in 2010 with a “Film Heritage Award” by the National Society of Film Critics.
  • 2K restoration of Ballet mécanique (1924, dir. Fernand Léger, Dudley Murphy) with additional footage and George Antheil’s 1925 percussive score for 16 player pianos and mechanical noises.
  • Previously unavailable, unique versions of Meshes of the Afternoon (1943, dir. Maya Deren, Alexandre Hackenschmeid), In the Street (1948, 1952, dir. Helen Levitt, Janice Loeb, James Agee, N.Y., N.Y. (1958, dir. Francis Thompson), Castro Street (1966, dir. Bruce Baillie0, and Film That Rises to the Surface of Clarified Butter (1968, dir. Owen Land formerly George Landow)
  • 28-page booklet featuring an essay and extensive notes on restorations by curator, filmmaker, and film historian Bruce Posner.

About the Blackhawk Films® Collection
Blackhawk Films® was founded in 1927 as a producer of film advertising for merchants and as a distributor of regional newsreels. The company made its mark as a nontheatrical distributor with the advent of 16mm sound film in 1933, establishing several regional offices before WWII. In 1947, Blackhawk expanded into sales of used film and soon thereafter began distributing new 8mm and 16mm prints of Laurel & Hardy comedies from Hal Roach Studios as well as titles from such other suppliers such as Fox Movietone, Killiam Shows, and National Telefilm Associates. David Shepard joined Blackhawk as Vice President (1973-1976) and after founding Film Preservation Associates in 1986, acquired the Blackhawk Films library which now comprises some 5,000 titles.

About Flicker Alley, LLC
Flicker Alley, LLC was founded in 2002 by Jeff Masino. Each Flicker Alley publication is the culmination of hundreds of hours of research, digital restoration, graphic design, music composition and scoring. Collectively, they reflect the creativity, expertise, and shared passion of many talented collaborators. The Flicker Alley brand has grown to enjoy national and international critical acclaim. The company is a four-time recipient of the National Society of Film Critics Film Heritage Award for publishing "rare early U.S. and foreign silent film."

About Filmmakers Showcase
Filmmakers Showcase is Bruce Posner, who works as an independent curator and programmer of film, an archivist focused on film preservation-restoration and a creative artist in film. Posner’s curatorial projects are cited as “provocative, insightful and significant to the history of motion pictures” garnering him honors from the National Society of Film Critics, Los Angeles Film Critics Association, and Boston Society of Film Critics. In 2004, he was designated a Lifetime Arts Fellow by the New Hampshire State Council for the Arts.

Purchase at Flicker Alley

Exhibitions & Screenings Contact:
FILMMAKERS SHOWCASE
tel. +1-603-252-6786
bcposner@gmail.com