Tuesday, October 4, 2011 at 7pm
Light Industry at Cabinet:
Oscar Micheaux's The Exile
300 Nevins Street
Brooklyn, New York
Oscar Micheaux, 16mm, 1931, 93 mins
Introduced by Martine Syms
In his essay "Bad Movies," J. Hoberman describes Oscar Micheaux as the "Black Pioneer of American film—not just because he was a black man, or because in his youth he pioneered the West, or because he was the greatest figure in 'race' movies and an unjustly ignored force in early American cinema. Micheaux is America's Black Pioneer in the way that André Breton was Surealism's Black Pope. His movies throw our history and movies into an alien and startling disarray." For tonight's event, artist Martine Syms, one of the proprietors of Golden Age in Chicago, will present The Exile, Micheaux's first sound picture, a sensationalist melodrama about illicit desire on the South Dakota homestead and murder in a Windy City brothel. In addition to constituting a vital chapter in the history of independent film distribution, Micheaux's movies have also long been admired by some of cinema's most adventurous practitioners for their invigorating, sui generis approach to narrative form—one of the rare prints of The Exile is being provided courtesy of Ken Jacobs. As Hoberman would put it, "Micheaux constructed an anti-Hollywood out of rags and bones on some barely-imaginable psychic tundra."
Syms's book Implications and Distinctions: Format, Content, and Context in Contemporary Race Film, which traces the “color line” through the distribution and exhibition of cinema, was recently published by Future Plan and Program.
Tickets - $7 suggested donation, available at door.
Presented as part of Couchsurfing.