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VENUES AND TICKETS
Whitsell Auditorium
1219 SW Park Avenue
Portland, OR 97205

The Box Office opens 30 minutes prior to showtime.

PARKING

ADMISSION PRICES
$9 General
$8 PAM Members, Students, Seniors
$6 Friends of the Film Center

Tickets are now available online. Click on the 'Buy Tickets' links to buy online.

BOOK OF TEN TICKETS
$50 Buy Here

THE 10-MINUTE RULE
Seats for advance ticket and pass holders are held until 10 minutes before showtime, when any unfilled seats are released to the public. Thus, advance tickets or passes ensure that you will not have to wait in the ticket purchase line but do not guarantee a seat in the case of arrival after the 10-minute window has begun. Your early arrival also helps get screenings started promptly. We appreciate your understanding. Advance ticket holders who arrive within the 10-minute window but are not seated may exchange their tickets for another screening at the Ticket Outlet or obtain a cash refund at the theater. There are no refunds or exchanges for late arrivals or for missed screenings.



   
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Reel Music 27

Welcome to our 27th edition of Reel Music. We've been on the lookout all year for new works—and timely classics—for this annual celebration of sound and image, music and culture. Whether your passion is classical, opera, jazz, blues, rock, or reggae, we hope you find this mixture of old and new, familiar and strange to be full of inspiration and discovery. As always, our special thanks go to Music Millennium, Willamette Week, and MacTarnahan's Brewing Company for helping to make it all happen. Enjoy.



Fri, Jan 8, 2010
at 7 PM

NEIL YOUNG TRUNK SHOW
DIRECTOR: JONATHAN DEMME
US, 2009

Demme (STOP MAKING SENSE) captures the iconic Young in the middle of a stage full of personal icons. At times he is alone in the center of a circle of his beloved acoustic guitars; at others he is in the midst of his much-beloved musicians Ben Keith, Rick Rosas, Ralph Molina, Anthony “Sweet Pea” Crawford, and his wife, Pegi Young. There are delicately offered piano/guitar/voice numbers like “Ambulance Blues”; mesmerizing electric travelogues of the artist’s psyche such as “No Hidden Path”; searing, chaotic anthems like “Hurricane” and “Spirit Road”; and rarely performed pieces, such as “Harvest,” that provide glimpses of Young’s less public persona.

( 94 min )

Thanks to media partner KBOO Radio.


SEE THE TRAILER


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Fri, Jan 8, 2010
at 9:15 PM

Sat, Jan 9, 2010
at 9:15 PM

ASHES OF AMERICAN FLAGS
DIRECTOR: BRENDAN CANTY, CHRISTOPH GREEN
US, 2009

Beautifully shot by Canty, of Fugazi, and Green (makers of BURN TO SHINE), ASHES is an intimate document of Wilco’s 2008 tour, drawing on live performances at five quintessentially American venues: Cain’s Ballroom in Tulsa, Tipitina’s in New Orleans, The Mobile Civic Center in Alabama, The Ryman Auditorium in Nashville, and the 9:30 Club in Washington, D.C. In addition to experiencing the spirit and energy of the band, we watch the country’s landscapes drift by and get to know the personalities between performances: multi-instrumentalist Pat Sansone takes Polaroids of fading small-town America; bassist John Stirratt speaks about his family’s history in the New Orleans music scene; guitarist Nels Cline talks about giving himself whiplash while performing; and Jeff Tweedy sticks up for representational art.

( 88 min )

Win tickets to see Wilco live on February 9! Courtesy of Wilcoworld.net, at each screening we will be raffling off one pair of tickets to the sold-out concert on February 9 at the Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall.

Thanks to media partner 94.7 FM.


SEE THE TRAILER


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Sat, Jan 9, 2010
at 7 PM

MIGHTY UKE
DIRECTOR: TONY COLEMAN
CANADA, 2009

Think of a ukulele and you probably imagine grass skirts, slide guitars, and kitschy lyrics. But far from a mere Hawaiian novelty item, the ukulele is a dynamic instrument with a rich history, and has profoundly influenced music around the world. At the dawn of the radio age, ukulele music owned the airwaves. Broadway produced ukulele musicals and Hollywood produced ukulele movie stars. The instrument was so inexpensive and easy to play that by the early twenties the “uke” was the most popular instrument in the American home. Over the next thirty years, the uke was number one; but then, with the rise of the rock and roll guitar, it faded into nerdy obscurity. Until now. The ukulele is making a comeback. Clubs and ensembles are sprouting up around the world (Portland too), and a new generation is pulling their grandparents’ ukes out of the closet. MIGHTY UKE travels the world to discover why so many people of different nations, cultures, ages, and musical tastes are turning to the ukulele to express themselves, connect with the past, and connect with each other.

( 85 min )

After the film stay for live uke with members of the Portland Ukulele Project.

Thanks to media partner KBOO Radio.


SEE THE TRAILER


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Sun, Jan 10, 2010
at 2 PM

IN SEARCH OF MOZART
DIRECTOR: PHIL GRABSKY
GREAT BRITAIN, 2007

Featuring Renée Fleming, Magdalena Kozená, and a host of others, this ambitious documentary, filmed in ten countries, is an engaging biographical portrait of Mozart and a master class in his collected works. Grabsky traces the composer's life through his music and his extensive personal correspondence, and includes performances by the greatest musicians of our time and commentary by some of the world's most renowned musical scholars. From K1a to K626 (Requiem), over 80 works are featured in chronological order, revealing striking parallels between the music and the composer's experiences. Though the music takes center stage, his letters reveal an extraordinary voice which rings out on a human level, full of joy, passion, pain, rage, bawdy humor, and great sensitivity.

( 120 min )

Co-sponsored by the Portland Opera, which is presenting Mozart’s Cosi Fan Tutti February 5, 7, 11, and 13.


SEE THE TRAILER


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Sun, Jan 10, 2010
at 4:45 PM

BEYOND IPANEMA: BRAZILIAN WAVES IN GLOBAL MUSIC
DIRECTOR: GUTO BARRA, BÉCO DRANOFF
BRAZIL, 2009

“For decades Brazilian music has captivated audiences worldwide. What makes Brazilian music such a powerful force? Why does bossa nova still lure DJs and producers 50 years after it was created? Why does the Tropicália movement resonate so deeply with the alternative-rock crowd? This film explores the Brazilian music experience outside Brazil, accompanied by a specially curated soundtrack featuring Brazilian classics reinterpreted by a new generation of artists. With Devendra Banhart, M.I.A., Os Mutantes, Caetano Veloso, Gilberto Gil, Tom Zé, Seu Jorge, Thievery Corporation, Bebel Gilberto, CSS, Creed Taylor, David Byrne, and many others.”—Museum of Modern Art.

( 89 min )

Sponsored by KPSU, Portland's College Radio.


SEE THE TRAILER


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Sun, Jan 10, 2010
at 7 PM

Fri, Jan 15, 2010
at 9 PM

COOL
DIRECTOR: ANTHONY WALL
GREAT BRITAIN, 2009

Between 1949 and 1950, Miles Davis and friends recorded six double-sided 78s, later released as the seminal album “The Birth of the Cool.” The word, coined in the '40s by musicians, left the inner sanctum of modern jazz and black culture, entered the mainstream, and has stayed there ever since. Where did it come from and what did it mean, “cool”? By the end of the decade cool was the look, sound, and attitude—ever since, everyone has wanted to be cool. Not only musicians (from Chet Baker to Stan Getz and Antonio Carlos Jobim), but the artists, writers, filmmakers, and politicians of the era (Jack Kerouac, Jackson Pollock, and even Jackie Kennedy) strove in their fields to achieve the attitude, style, and condition of the new jazz. Anthony Wall (BOB MARLEY: EXODUS 77) explores who was cool and how it became one of the defining phenomena of jazz and the art of the twentieth century. (60 mins.)

FOLLOWED BY

1959: THE YEAR THAT CHANGED JAZZ
DIRECTOR: PAUL BERNAYS
GREAT BRITAIN, 2009

The year 1959 was a watershed moment for America—socially, politically, and economically. In that same year four now-iconic jazz artists each made an album that would change music forever. Miles Davis recorded “Kind Of Blue,” an album that defined cool and has gone on to be the best-selling and best-known jazz LP of all time; Ornette Coleman, a man Miles Davis derided, made the prophetically titled "The Shape of Jazz To Come," a record that musically mirrored the US's forays into space; Dave Brubeck recorded “Time Out,” featuring the huge hit “Take Five”; and the politically active Charles Mingus produced “Ah Um,” directly confronting American racism. Using archival footage of all the performers and interviews with many who were there, 1959: THE YEAR THAT CHANGED JAZZ captures a moment when jazz’s cultural impact was at its peak. (60 mins.)

Thanks to media partner KBOO Radio.

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Thu, Jan 14, 2010
at 7 PM

TRIMPIN: THE SOUND OF INVENTION
DIRECTOR: PETER ESMONDE
US, 2008

Esmonde’s film offers an amusing journey through the sonic world of an eccentric creative genius. Artist/inventor/engineer/composer Trimpin shuns the hype and hyperbole of the commercial art world, yet his freewheeling sculptures and outrageous musical experiments are cherished by museums all over the planet. Filmed over two years, this cinéma vérité documentary follows the artist/inventor as he devises a perpetual motion machine, builds a 20-meter tower of automatic electric guitars, and collaborates with the Kronos Quartet on an outrageous world premiere. The film will delight anyone interested in the mysteries, pitfalls, and sheer joy of creative experiment. "A genius at circuitry and machinery as well as acoustics and musical structure, he manufactures orchestras that play themselves."—The Village Voice.

( 79 min )

SEE THE TRAILER


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Fri, Jan 15, 2010
at 7 PM

THE AGONY AND ECSTASY OF PHIL SPECTOR
DIRECTOR: VIKRAM JAYANTI
US/GREAT BRITAIN, 2008

“Composer, 'Wall of Sound' pop producer extraordinaire (The Crystals, The Ronettes, The Righteous Brothers, Ike and Tina Turner…), and now convicted killer, the almost mythically reclusive Phil Spector agreed during his first trial to grant an unprecedented on-camera interview in his Hollywood mansion to filmmaker Vikram Jayanti. Scornful of the world's unworthiness to judge either his lifelong brilliance or his criminal guilt, jittery from medication, and recalling myriad landmark collaborations with decades of musical greats, he's riveting, an indelibly American fuckup. David Lynch or Kenneth Anger might have dreamed up Jayanti’s layering of unreliable testimony with Top 20 archival rhapsodies and courtroom reality TV. No aficionado of ’60s pop should miss this film—or expect to hear those soaring two-minute epics of love's rapture in quite the same way afterwards.”—Sydney Film Festival. "An unmissable music documentary."—Mojo.

( 100 min )
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Sat, Jan 16, 2010
at 4:45 PM

CAFÉ DE LOS MAESTROS
DIRECTOR: MIGUEL KOHAN
ARGENTINA, 2008

“Tango is Argentina's great gift to the world, and here we see why we should all be grateful. Twenty-two 'maestros,' singers, musicians, and composers from tango's glory days (roughly the 1930s to the 1950s), are brought back for a grand performance and recording session. The performers—some of whom must literally dust off their tuxedos—are in fine form, demonstrating the passion at the core of the form. ‘Tango is music, song, dance. Three-minute stories of the people,’ says one maestro. ‘You can't separate dance from life,’ adds another. While preparations for the concert and recording sessions are under way, people of all ages dance the tango in clubs, restaurants, grand halls, and in the street.”—Dave Nuttycombe.

( 90 min )

SEE THE TRAILER


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Sat, Jan 16, 2010
at 7 PM

THE JAZZ BARONESS
DIRECTOR: HANNAH ROTHSCHILD
GREAT BRITAIN, 2009

In the 1950s, Pannonica "Nica" Rothschild, British heiress to one of the world's largest fortunes, had it all. But one day she happened to hear a jazz record by a struggling piano player. She was completely taken by his music, and thus began a saga of social censure, and even jail, due to the cultivation of the now-legendary Thelonious Monk. Rescuing instruments from pawnshops, even shepherding bands to gigs in her Bentley, Rothschild became an unlikely freedom fighter for a generation of black artists and a patron saint of bebop. Combining interviews with Quincy Jones, Sonny Rollins, Chico Hamilton, and Clint Eastwood with Nica's personal letters read by Helen Mirren, Hannah Rothschild (Nica's great-niece) crafts a fascinating love story between an indomitable woman, a musical giant, and the jazz that bewitched them both.

( 82 min )

Sponsored by Oregon Music News


SEE THE TRAILER


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Sat, Jan 16, 2010
at 9 PM

Sat, Jan 23, 2010
at 9:15 PM

THE BQE BROOKLYN QUEENS EXPRESSWAY
DIRECTOR: SUFJAN STEVENS
US, 2009

Sufjan Stevens’ THE BQE is a vivid symphonic and cinematic exploration of the infamous Brooklyn-Queens Expressway, a major traffic artery that severed neighborhoods and contoured waterways with the brute force of modern urban planning. Commissioned by the Brooklyn Academy of Music as part of its Next Wave Festival, Stevens' film and music tell a quintessentially American tale employing animation, time-lapse photography, in-camera editing, slow motion, and post-production mirror effects that transform urban blight into a splendor of graphic compositions. (40 mins.)

SEE THE TRAILER

FOLLOWED BY (SAT, JAN 16)

BURN TO SHINE: PORTLAND, OREGON
DIRECTOR: CHRISTOPH GREEN
US, 2005

The concept is simple: travel to lively music meccas, invite a local "curator" to select a dozen local bands of the moment, set them up and record them in the living room of a house about to be demolished, then burn the house down. Chris Funk of The Decemberists brings together 12 of his favorite bands—a cross section of Portland's vital music scene captured in a single day, celebrating a moment in time and place. Featuring performances by The Thermals, Quasi, The Planet The, Wet Confetti, Lifesavas, Tom Heinl, Mirah, The Decemberists, The Shins, The Gossip, The Ready, and Sleater-Kinney. (55 mins.)

Sponsored by KPSU, Portland's College Radio.

FOLLOWED BY (SAT, JAN 23)

BURN TO SHINE: SEATTLE
DIRECTORS: BRENDAN CANTY, CHRISTOPH GREEN
US, 2007

Ben Gibbard curated the Seattle edition of BURN TO SHINE, a set of films documenting special live performances. This edition features Minus the Bear, The Long Winters, Benjamin Gibbard, Tiny Vipers, Eddie Vedder, Spook the Horse, Blue Scholars, Harvey Danger, The Can't See, David Bazan, Kinski, Jesse Sykes, Triumph of Lethargy Skinned Alive to Death, and The Cave Singers. (60 mins.)

Sponsored by KPSU, Portland's College Radio.


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Sun, Jan 17, 2010
at 2:30 PM

IN SEARCH OF BEETHOVEN
DIRECTOR: PHIL GRABSKY
GREAT BRITAIN, 2009

The latest film from Grabsky (IN SEARCH OF MOZART) delves into the life and work of Ludwig van Beethoven. Meticulously reconstructing the chronology of Beethoven’s life, the film offers new insights from his biography and letters in tandem with the chronology of his poetic music. Beethoven was a heroic and tormented man who battled to overcome his tragic deafness and searched for his “immortal beloved.” Grabsky documents each piece of music as he travels across Europe and North America to interview historians and musicians between rehearsals and performances. One highlight includes exclusive footage of Claudio Abbado’s critically acclaimed performance of Beethoven’s opera, Fidelio. More than 55 performances and interviews with the world’s leading musicians and conductors, including Gianandrea Noseda, Sir Roger Norrington, Riccardo Chailly, and Vadim Repin, contribute to an intimate interpretation of the man and his music.

( 139 min )
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Sun, Jan 17, 2010
at 5:30 PM

COUNT BASIE: THEN AS NOW, COUNT’S THE KING
DIRECTOR: GARY KEYS
US, 2008

Memories of jazz great William “Count” Basie come to life as Keys juxtaposes an afternoon of reminiscing by surviving members of Basie Orchestras—among them Frank Foster, Benny Powell, George Lewis, Frank West, and Joe Wilder—with vintage film clips, photographs, and audio performances. More an informal, affectionate salute than a formal history, it nonetheless comes through that over the decades the “Chairman’s” bands—home to such legendary talents as Lester Young, Billy Eckstein, Freddy Green, and Ella Fitzgerald—swung like no other.

( 71 min )
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Sun, Jan 17, 2010
at 7 PM

ED THIGPEN: MASTER OF TIME, RHYTHM, AND TASTE
DIRECTOR: DON MCGLYNN
DENMARK, 2009

Best known for his long tenures with both Oscar Peterson and Ella Fitzgerald, drummer Ed Thigpen has played on more than 900 albums with nearly every important jazz musician of the 20th century. McGlynn, whose essential film portraits have sketched musicians as diverse as Howlin’ Wolf, Louis Prima, Art Pepper, Charles Mingus, and Dexter Gordon, probes many aspects of Thigpen’s life as a musician, teacher, historian, and world traveler. Fellow musicians Horace Parlan, Billy Taylor, Carsten Dahl, Tomas Frank, and others explain why Thigpen, who has lived in Copenhagen for the past 37 years, is so respected by musicians and loved by jazz fans all over the world.

( 91 min )

SEE THE TRAILER


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Mon, Jan 18, 2010
at 7 PM

SOUNDTRACK FOR A REVOLUTION
DIRECTOR: DAN STURMAN, BILL GUTTENTAG
US, 2009

A host of American civil rights leaders take us through the powerful narrative of the 1960s and the vital role that songs, many of them resurrected Negro spirituals, played in the struggle to end segregation. In 1960s America there was a law called “reckless eyeballing” which could jail a black man for looking at a white woman the wrong way. But the times they were a-changing. Martin Luther King Jr. led millions in the quest to end segregation, and throughout the many battles that followed, as activists sought their rightful place on buses and at lunch counters and demonstrated on streets where they were beaten and arrested, one thing kept them going: the power of song. “All of the songs had one purpose,” recalls Harry Belafonte, “and that was to reach deep into the moments of our greatest anguish and to say ‘we have had worse than this—we can endure.’” Against the backdrop of often-astonishing archival footage, modern musicians including Joss Stone and John Legend play the soundtrack to a revolution.

( 82 min )
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Thu, Jan 21, 2010
at 7 PM

I NEED THAT RECORD
DIRECTOR: BRENDAN TOLLER
US, 2009

While Portland’s independent music stores survive (not to say flourish), the situation is much bleaker nationally. In the past decade, over 3,000 record stores have closed, the result of record industry greed, corporate consolidation, new technology, and marketing hype sometimes inversely proportional to the quality of music. Exploring the trajectory from the vinyl glory days of old to a fractured digital culture, Toller enlists the viewpoints of small record store owners across the country, social observers such as Noam Chomsky, and musicians such as Thurston Moore (Sonic Youth), Ian MacKaye (Fugazi), Mike Watt (Minutemen), Lenny Kaye (Patti Smith Group), Chris Frantz (Talking Heads), and Pat Carney (The Black Keyes), to reflect on why the cultural oasis of the local store matters and why it must survive.

( 77 min )

Sponsored by Oregon Music News


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Thu, Jan 21, 2010
at 8:45 PM

Fri, Jan 22, 2010
at 7 PM

BILL FRISELL MEETS BUSTER KEATON

In the early 1990s, jazz guitar innovator Bill Frisell composed evocative new scores for six films by Buster Keaton. The music was released only on CD. But now Frisell, with bassist Kermit Driscoll and drummer Joey Baron, has combined the scores with the silent films, creating a magical marriage of two masters of Americana—one of sound, one of image. Keaton’s ONE WEEK (1920) and THE HIGH SIGN (1921) are non-stop barrages of visually striking and perfectly executed sight gags. GO WEST (1925), which displays Keaton's pathos as much as his humor, finds the great comedian doing his best to wrangle cattle. Frisell’s take on Keaton’s surreal mix of slapstick and melancholy is at once vintage Frisell and a treat for anyone who appreciates the timeless brilliance of Keaton. "Frisell's scores perfectly balance the need to be abstract and the need to be literal. . . [He has] recurring motifs that suggest the new American possibility of the time, motifs redolent of the sort of optimism heard in some country music, blues, and jazz."—New York Times.

( 90 min )

Sponsored by Oregon Music News


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Fri, Jan 22, 2010
at 9 PM

ALL TOMORROW’S PARTIES
DIRECTOR: JONATHAN CAOUETTE
GREAT BRITAIN, 2009

ALL TOMORROW’S PARTIES dives headlong into the transatlantic music festival of the same name, in which an out-of-season holiday camp on the coast of England is transmogrified into a swirling combination of cutting-edge music, crazy golf, and chalet living, all curated by a single band or artist. Fashioned from the found or contributed HD, Super-8, camcorder, and mobile phone footage of over two hundred filmmakers, this romp from Caouette (TARNATION) features bands new and old: Sonic Youth, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, The Gossip, Mogwai, GZA, Iggy and the Stooges, Slint, Animal Collective, Grizzly Bear, Belle and Sebastian, Patti Smith, Battles, Grinderman (featuring Nick Cave), Portishead, and more. “Visually dazzling…pure catnip for anyone who has Pitchfork.com bookmarked.”—Variety.

( 82 min )

SEE THE TRAILER


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Sat, Jan 23, 2010
at 7 PM

WHEEDLE’S GROOVE
DIRECTOR: JENNIFER MAAS
US, 2009

“Wiping dust from a wonderful stack of forgotten vinyl, director Jennifer Maas offers a celebratory trip into the largely undocumented Seattle soul scene of the 1960s. Imagine Memphis's Stax Records without innovative marketing savvy or geographic blessing. Doing so will only increase your empathy for Robbie Hill, Patrinell Staten, and other artists who decades after their zenith remain largely unheralded. Deftly illustrating how music shapes community, breaks barriers, and forges new paths, WHEEDLE’S GROOVE reveals that Seattle's gray-sky grunge owes a debt to musicians such as native Kenny Gorelick—yes, Kenny G.—who wailed soul sax in his hometown's mostly black Central District years before becoming the coy prince of marshmallow jazz. Who knew!”—John Hubbell.

( 87 min )

The producer Michelle Witten and musicians from the film will be in attendance.


SEE THE TRAILER


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Sun, Jan 24, 2010
at 4:30 PM

THEY CAME TO PLAY
DIRECTOR: ALEX ROTARU
US, 2008

THEY CAME TO PLAY is a documentary about the International Amateur Piano Competition for outstanding amateurs, hosted by the Van Cliburn Foundation. With humor and drama, it observes multi-talented amateur pianists from all over the country as they strive to balance their work, home, and musical lives. Many of them have overcome extraordinary challenges like drug addiction, AIDS, heartbreak, and the search for political asylum, and they all share an overwhelming need to express themselves, musically and otherwise. Their intense preparation comes to a climax during the week-long competition, when they perform in front of a professional jury and discerning audience in three highly competitive elimination rounds.

( 84 min )

Sponsored by the Portland Piano International and Sherman Clay Pianos.


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Sun, Jan 24, 2010
at 7 PM

ROCK PROPHECIES
DIRECTOR: JOHN CHESTER
US, 2009

Smart, hip, and funny, ROCK PROPHECIES is a backstage pass into the eccentric world of rock 'n' roll from the vantage point of an obsessive photographer. When barely 18, Robert M. Knight stalked, captured, and befriended Jimi Hendrix and Led Zeppelin well before they become iconic. Years later, he snapped the controversial last photograph of Stevie Ray Vaughan. Rock and roll's ultimate eyewitness takes you on an all-access tour of guitar greatness, revisiting the friends and idols of his past while attempting to help launch the careers of two explosive new acts. When Robert stumbles upon Tyler Dow Bryant—a 16-year-old guitar phenom from Texas—he’s convinced he may have found the next Stevie Ray Vaughan. Robert risks his reputation and career and takes a chance on Tyler. The two then set off on an unbelievable journey to take their own shot at making history.

( 79 min )

SEE THE TRAILER


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Mon, Jan 25, 2010
at 7 PM

PORTLAND MOJO: HOW STUMPTOWN GOT THE BLUES
DIRECTOR: BOB LEITCH
US, 2010

Over the years Portland has evolved as a blues mecca, rich with exceptional musicians and boasting a remarkable support base of festivals, clubs, record stores, and enthusiastic audiences. How did this happen? Guitarist and first-time filmmaker Bob Leitch traces the history of Portland's music scene from the 1940s to the ’70s, dialing in on a blues scene that came of age in the ’60s and ’70s and continues to thrive to this day. Drawing on film clips, photographs, posters, and interviews with just about everyone involved in the evolution of the scene over the last five decades, PORTLAND MOJO is both a chronicle of and an homage to the numerous artists who have made great music and memories in Portland. There are too many names to list—but if you can think of them, they're in this film.

( 86 min )

Join us after the screening for live music with many Portland legends at the Mission Theater, NW 17th & Glisan. Admission is free, no-host food and drink. Sponsored by Bart Day, Entertainment Law West, LLC.


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Thu, Jan 28, 2010
at 7 PM

HOW THE BEATLES ROCKED THE KREMLIN
DIRECTOR: LESLIE WOODHEAD
GREAT BRITAIN, 2009

Back in the USSR you could literally go to jail for listening to Beatles records. But Communist disapproval didn’t stop rumors of John Lennon sightings or impromptu Beatles concerts from spreading, as a generation tried to look out through the Iron Curtain for inspiration. The legacy of the freedom-inspiring Beatles era is still felt in Russia today through the dozens of die-hard fans who celebrate the music through ingenious modes of expression and with as much, if not more, passion than when they first heard it a generation ago. The Beatles inspired some to build their own guitars, start their own bands, or go into the bootleg record business instead of joining the government. Woodhead’s film offers a fascinating insight into the Beatles' legacy—a force perhaps as powerful as any in bringing down the Soviet empire.

( 60 min )

SEE THE TRAILER


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Thu, Jan 28, 2010
at 8:30 PM

THE UPSETTER: THE LIFE & MUSIC OF LEE "SCRATCH" PERRY
DIRECTOR: ETHAN HIGBEE, ADAM BHALA LOUGH
US, 2008

Some people call Lee "Scratch" Perry a prophet; others claim he's a madman. Seeing him in the opening scenes—spinning in circles in his plaid shorts and oversized sunglasses, spouting the praises of Jah Rastafari—you could conclude he's a little bit of both. Kicking off in rural Jamaica, UPSETTER looks into Perry's youth before segueing to the days of his musical peak in Kingston, where he mentored a young Bob Marley, shaped the reggae sound as we know it today, pioneered a new genre called "dub," and invented what would become "the remix." A valuable document of musical culture and a unique character study of a man once called "the Salvador Dali of Reggae," UPSETTER bears witness to the frenzied life of a legend.

( 90 min )

SEE THE TRAILER


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Fri, Jan 29, 2010
at 7 PM

RETAKE PRODUCTIONS PRESENTS: SCORING THE CLASSICS
DIRECTOR: VARIOUS

Portland-based film scoring ensemble Retake Productions presents an evening of film with live original musical accompaniment. The seven-piece ensemble—violin, cello, trumpet, two guitars, acoustic bass, and drums—accompanies some of the most striking films of the silent era. The program includes Luis Buñuel and Salvador Dali’s surrealist masterpiece UN CHIEN ANDALOU (1929), Joris Iven’s visionary rainscape REGEN (1929), and excerpts from Robert Flaherty’s timeless NANOOK OF THE NORTH (1922) and Alexander Dovzhenko’s Soviet cinema classic EARTH (1930).

Special Admission: $10 general, $8 Portland Art Museum members and SSC Friends; Silver Screen Directors, Producers, and Benefactors free.

Sponsored by Oregon Music News


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Fri, Jan 29, 2010
at 9 PM

BOB MARLEY: EXODUS 77
DIRECTOR: ANTHONY WALL
GREAT BRITAIN, 2008

Drawing on a mind-boggling wealth of news and television archives from 1977, mixing in Marley's music and words, director Wall (THE BRIAN EPSTEIN STORY, ONE IRISH ROVER) magically evokes a pivotal year in the life of this great artist. Time Magazine voted Marley's album "Exodus"—which took reggae and the message of Rastafarian culture to audiences worldwide—Album of the Century that year and Marley took up residence in London after an attempt on his life in Jamaica. He exploded with a creativity and force that made his true peers not only Bob Dylan and the Beatles, but also the likes of Che Guevara and Nelson Mandela.

( 90 min )

Sponsored by Oregon Music News


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Sat, Jan 30, 2010
at 7 PM

THE HEART IS A DRUM MACHINE
DIRECTOR: CHRISTOPHER POMERENKE
US, 2009

Frank Zappa once said, “Writing about music is like dancing about architecture.” But what of talking about music? Many of today's top artists and scholars do just that in this cinematic look at a uniquely human obsession. Christopher Pomerenke’s new documentary (made by the producers of MOOG) explores the profound connection people have to music, its involvement in our daily lives, and its role in shaping human history. Among the diverse musicians weighing in are Britt Daniel (Spoon), Janet Weiss (Sleater-Kinney), Isaac Brock (Modest Mouse), Jimmy Tamborello (The Postal Service), John Doe (X), the Dandy Warhols, Maynard James Keenan (Tool, A Perfect Circle), Los Lobos, Kimya Dawson, George Clinton, Juliette Lewis, and the Trachtenburg Family Slideshow Players. The Flaming Lips’ Steven Drozd created an original score for the film. (70 mins.)

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FOLLOWED BY

SAY MY NAME
DIRECTOR: NIRIT PELED
US/GREAT BRITAIN/NETHERLANDS, 2009

In a hip hop and R&B world dominated by men and noted for misogyny, the unstoppable female lyricists of SAY MY NAME speak candidly about the influences of class, race, and gender on pursuing their passions. From hip hop’s birthplace in the Bronx to grime on London’s Eastside, emerging artists like Chocolate Thai, Invincible, Jean Grae, and Miz Korona, as well as world-renowned pioneers like MC Lyte, Erykah Badu, Estelle, and Monie Love, demonstrate how they have made art from adversity. Sparky D, Roxanne Shante, MC Lyte, and others share the tales of how it all got started—hip hop history straight from the women who have lived it—and also how it stands today. (75 mins.)

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Sun, Jan 31, 2010
at 4 PM

ICONS AMONG US: JAZZ IN THE PRESENT TENSE
DIRECTOR: MICHAEL RIVORIA, LARS LARSON, PETER J. VOGT
US, 2009

Developed from a four-episode TV series, ICONS AMONG US provides a lively and insightful snapshot of today’s jazz scene, reveling in the energy of some of today’s most creative jazz artists while delving into the richly complex history and present-day reality of this important cultural art form. Interviews with dozens of musicians from multiple generations—Terence Blanchard, Bill Frisell, Ravi Coltrane, Medeski Martin & Wood, Nicholas Payton, Dirty Dozen Brass Band, along with many others—and a wealth of performance clips and rare photographs combine to celebrate the past, present, and future of an art form that continues to evolve.

( 101 min )

The directors and producer John Comorford will be on hand to introduce and talk about the film. Bill Royston, Artistic Director of the Portland Jazz Festival, February 22-28, will join the discussion about the state of today's jazz scene.


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Sun, Jan 31, 2010
at 7 PM

JOHNNY MERCER: THE DREAM’S ON ME
DIRECTOR: BRUCE RICKER
US, 2009

Admired and praised by the likes of Irving Berlin and Cole Porter, Johnny Mercer has been described as “one of our great folk poets” and “the most perfect American lyricist.” Throughout his extraordinary career, he collaborated with hundreds of composers to write legendary movie songs such as “Hooray for Hollywood,” “Jeepers Creepers,” and “Moon River.” Mercer then went on to co-found Capitol Records in 1942 and became a successful Broadway producer of “St. Louis Woman” and “L’il Abner.” To mark the 100th anniversary of Mercer’s birth in 1909, Ricker surveys his life and work through the eyes of Clint Eastwood,Tony Bennett, John Williams, Dr. John, Michael Feinstein, Stephen Holden, Jamie Cullem, Audra McDonald, Andre Previn, and numerous others.

( 90 min )

Join us after the film for a Johnny Mercer tribute performance by Tony Starlight's Supperclub & Lounge.


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Thu, Feb 4, 2010
at 7 PM

CHICANO ROCK! THE SOUNDS OF EAST LOS ANGELES
DIRECTOR: JON WILKMAN
US, 2009

"Let's take a trip down Whittier Boulevard!" chant Thee Midniters in Wilkman's love letter to sixty years of the soulful sounds of East Los Angeles, home of America’s largest Mexican-American community. Over the decades, succeeding generations of East LA artists have created a unique musical voice, and in the process proudly expressed their cultural identity—from ’40s Pachuco swing to ’50s teen idol Ritchie Valens, from ’60s garage rock and soul (Thee Midniters, Cannibal, and the Headhunters) to Los Lobos, punk, and beyond. With rare footage, photos, artifacts, and interviews, CHICANO ROCK! takes an informative low-rider cruise through one of America’s richest musical legacies. (60 mins.)

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FOLLOWED BY

TILL THE LAST DROP…MY HEART
DIRECTOR: BETO GÓMEZ
MEXICO, 2006

Gómez’s film is a valentine to Mexico and the women who gave their voices and essence to its cultural roots through Mexican music. The legendary Chavela Vargas, Lila Downs, Astrid Hadad, and other singers share their intimacies, memories, and pains, and above all, their moving music. (90 mins.)

Sponsored by Miracle Theatre Group.

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Fri, Feb 5, 2010
at 7 PM

Sun, Feb 7, 2010
at 4:30 PM

MUSICA SURFICA
DIRECTOR: MICK SOWRY
AUSTRALIA, 2009

This visually stunning film follows world-renowned violinist Richard Tognetti as he explores new boundaries in experimental surfing and surf music. The life-long surfer also happens to be the artistic director of the Australian Chamber Orchestra. In MUSICA SURFICA he teams up with influential surfer Derek Hynd, who is also interested in the connection between surfing and art. They are joined by top surfers and musicians on remote King Island in the Southern Ocean, where they ride unusual boards based on 300-year-old Hawaiian designs. Tognetti and other surfer-members of the Australian Chamber Orchestra perform for the people of King Island with guest musicians. It is an unlikely, electrifying combination of musical styles that has since toured the world to much acclaim. (46 mins.)

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FOLLOWED BY

LEONARD COHEN LIVE AT THE ISLE OF WIGHT, 1970
DIRECTOR: MURRAY LERNER
US, 1970/2009

On August 31, 1970, 35-year-old Leonard Cohen was awakened at 2 a.m. from a nap in his trailer and brought onstage to perform at the third annual Isle of Wight Music Festival. An estimated 600,000 people were waiting, just energized by a legendary set by Jimi Hendrix. As fellow festival headliners Joan Baez, Kris Kristofferson, Judy Collins, and others looked on, the Canadian folksinger-songwriter-poet-novelist quietly tamed the crowd with an equally spellbinding mix of songs and stories. Interwoven with Murray Lerner’s (FESTIVAL! FROM MAO TO MOZART, MESSAGE TO LOVE) live footage, never before shown, are brand-new interviews with Baez, Collins, Kristofferson, and others, together fashioning a fascinating and timely portrait of the artist as a young man. (64 mins.)

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Sat, Feb 6, 2010
at 7 PM

TRUE STORIES
DIRECTOR: DAVID BYRNE
US, 1986

“Only an artist as epic and outlandish as David Byrne could have made TRUE STORIES. The former Talking Heads frontman directs and stars in this Weekly World News-inspired collage, which loosely follows Byrne's unnamed cowboy character as he arrives in a fictional Texan town. Byrne observes the setting's peculiar inhabitants—including John Goodman playing a love-starved country crooner and performance artist Spalding Gray as the town's leader— while frequently breaking down the fourth wall by addressing the audience. With cinematographer Ed Lachman and a soundtrack by Byrne's legendary art-rock quartet, TRUE STORIES is a hyperbolic fantasy that parodies tabloid sensationalism and idiosyncratic Americana.”—Flavorpill. “A rock film with a brain, an ‘art’ movie with belly laughs.”—Time Out Film Guide. (89 mins.)

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FOLLOWED BY

STOP MAKING SENSE
DIRECTOR: JONATHAN DEMME
US, 1984

No band characterized ’80s new wave sounds and styles more than the Talking Heads. Director Demme’s expertly filmed concert film, photographed over three nights of  performances, captures the band, particularly frontman David Byrne, at the pinnacle of their creativity. (88 mins.)


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Sun, Feb 7, 2010
at 7 PM

INTANGIBLE ASSET NUMBER 82
DIRECTOR: EMMA FRANZ
AUSTRALIA, 2009

In her debut film, director Emma Franz captures the creative odyssey of respected Australian drummer Simon Barker in search of his muse, Korean Shaman Kim Seok-Chul—a Grand Master in his seventies who plays the hojok (a Korean wind instrument) with immense energy and complex technique. After hearing a rare recording of Kim Seok-Chul's music, Barker knew right away that he was listening to one of the world's greatest improvisers. In fact, so unique is the artistry of the Shaman that the Korean Government bestowed upon him the honorary title "Intangible Asset Number 82," recognizing him as the pre-eminent practitioner, Grand Master, and protector of his art form. Intrigued, Barker resolves to find and learn from the enigmatic master. Yet Kim Seok-Chul proves elusive, despite the fame accompanying his official honor as South Korea's 82nd Intangible Asset.

( 90 min )

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