Friday, January 21, 2011

Interview with Andy Lampert

Interviewed Andrew Lampert discussing the "Unessential Cinema."  Will post a link to the full interview when it appears in print, but here's a little teaser for now:

"The title of Unessential Cinema of course is a joke on Essential Cinema but it also, without meaning to be a derogatory name for these collections, is to acknowledge that Anthology has all these materials.  I really feel strongly that preserved film sitting on a shelf not being seen probably doesn't need to have been preserved.  I mean what's the point of preserving something if people aren't going to see it?"

"Unessentail Cinema: That's Undertainment!"
at Anthology Film Archives, April 6th, 2010
* * *

"One of the early shows that became a repeated show in the series was called 'Choose Your Own Adventure.'  Taking eleven films and not looking at them beforehand other than winding through them and making sure that they were projectionable and putting them out on a table.  Then when the audience came in announcing: 'We have eleven films here but we're only going to watch seven of them.  And so, we have to vote.  And the only way that we are going to know what they are is based on their title and kind of a brief idea might I have of what they are.'  And every time we did that show they've been very fun, and I call that show 'a test of our democratic process in action.'  Because it turns into fights in the audience, and people really want to see this, and people really want to see that.  And everybody always wants to see porn first.  They think it's going to be great.  But then they realize about five minutes into a ten-minute reel, it's really not that fun to watch porn with groups in a theater, it becomes very awkward.   So people's impulses tend to work against themselves.  Or the one that was called 'Dissection of a Rat,' they want to see that.  And then, you know, that's really hard to watch.  But then the one that was just called, like, 'Number 22,' always yields the wonder of the show."



  1. Yay Joel! Hooray for cinema of beauty and chaos and mystery and revolution!
    I look forward to reading your blog all the time!


  2. I remember this was done a couple times at the Robert Beck Memorial Cinema. Robert was such a hero..

    (and yaa on the blog Joel!)