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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 Festival 29

Our 29th Annual Reel Music Festival brings to the surface films that tell the creative, unexpected, and sometimes transformative origins of sounds so infused in our experience. We hope that our annual celebration of sound and image, music and culture, offers something that will perk your curiosity, warm your soul, and send you scouting for new discovery—whatever your musical tastes.

Special thanks go to Music Millennium, Willamette Week, Oregon Music News, KINK.fm, Musicfest NW, Search Party, KMHD Jazz Radio, opbmusic.org, and McMenamin’s for helping make it all happen.

Enjoy.



Fri, Oct 7, 2011
at 7 PM

Fri, Oct 14, 2011
at 7 PM

GEORGE HARRISON: LIVING IN THE MATERIAL WORLD
OPENING NIGHT
DIRECTOR: MARTIN SCORSESE
US, 2011

Scorsese’s intimate new film takes viewers on the musical and spiritual voyage that was George Harrison’s (1943-2001) life—much of it told in Harrison’s own words. Tracing his life from his musical beginnings in Liverpool through his experience as a musician, seeker, philanthropist, and filmmaker, Scorsese weaves together rich new material never seen before—interviews with Harrison and his closest friends, performances, home movies, and photographs—resulting in a rare glimpse into the mind and soul of an extraordinarily talented artist. Among the many interviewed are Eric Clapton, Terry Gilliam, Eric Idle, George Martin, Paul McCartney, Yoko Ono, Tom Petty, Phil Spector, Ringo Starr, and Jackie Stewart. (220 mins. with short intermission)

Sponsored by KINK.fm.


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Sat, Oct 8, 2011
at 1 PM

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THE LAST OF THE BLUE DEVILS
DIRECTOR: BRUCE RICKER
US, 1979

In the 1930s and ’40s, Kansas City was the home of some of jazz’s great figures—Count Basie, Charlie Parker, Bennie Moten, Joe Turner, Jay McShann, Lester Young, and Coleman Hawkins, to name but a few—and a style of music whose relentless swing became the backbone of rhythm and blues and rock and roll. Bruce Ricker’s loving tribute centers on a late ’70s reunion of some of the era’s greatest players who gathered together to reminisce and play. Ricker, who passed away this summer, added to this a wealth of vintage clips and interviews to recapture the music and personalities of an era. For anyone who lived it or who is just discovering this rich music, “this beautiful film is about life and jazz and how they interact.”—Newsweek. “There’s never been a jazz film more important—or more fun—than THE LAST OF THE BLUE DEVILS.”—Robert Palmer, Rolling Stone. (90 mins.)

FOLLOWED BY

CAB CALLOWAY/SKETCHES...
DIRECTOR: GAIL LEVIN
FRANCE/US, 2010
The inimitable jazzman and bandleader Cab Calloway (1907-1994) was a leading light of the swing years. A contemporary of Duke Ellington, Count Basie, and Louis Armstrong, he conquered Harlem with the sartorial extravagance, amazing dance steps, and catchy refrains that would become his trademark. The first African American to top the charts, he has gone down in history for his unforgettable renditions of such hits as “Smoky Joe” and “Minnie the Moocher.” With exceptional archival material and accounts by his relatives, former band members, caricaturists, and jazz historians, Levin’s warm portrait presents highlights from a career marked by musical triumph and chronic racial discrimination. (54 mins.)

Sponsored by KMHD Jazz Radio.

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Sat, Oct 8, 2011
at 6:30 PM

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THE SWELL SEASON
DIRECTOR: CHRIS DAPKINS
US, 2011

Folk-rock musicians Glen Hansard and Marketa Irglová shot to fame after they won two Grammys and the Best Song Oscar in 2008 for “Falling Slowly,” a song from the music film ONCE, in which they played a couple falling in love while making music. With life imitating art, the two—he 35, she 18—gradually fell into a romance while touring together. Dapkins’ affecting documentary tracks the fortunes of the two musicians in the wake of their sudden fame, poignantly charting the gradual disintegration of their relationship in the face of the bitter realities of life on the road. With concert performances by Iron and Wine, Bill Callahan, and their band, THE SWELL SEASON “tenderly dismantles the romantic mythology surrounding the indie smash ONCE.”—Hollywood Reporter. (90 mins.)

Sponsored by opbmusic.org.


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Sat, Oct 8, 2011
at 8:45 PM

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THIS IS NOISE POP
FESTIVAL PARTY/REEL POP PARTY
DIRECTOR: ADAM WERBACH
US, 2010

More than a decade in the making and featuring never-before-seen footage, THIS IS NOISE POP explores the genesis of indie rock through the trials and tribulations of bands captured during and after their San Francisco Noise Pop Festival performances. Featuring Sebadoh, Stephen Malkmus, Death Cab for Cutie, The National, The Donnas, Guided by Voices, Creeper Lagoon, Beulah, Bob Mould, The Dismemberment Plan, The Shins, Britt Daniel, Modest Mouse, Granddaddy, and more. Werbach filmed onstage and backstage between 1998 and 2009, capturing the rise of current indie rock in the process. “It’s about the idea of indie and what happens when it goes mainstream—is it still indie?” says Werbach. Among the highlights: Isaac Brock of Modest Mouse cursing out an audience for making too many requests, Ben Gibbard of Death Cab recalling the band’s rise to fame, and Pavement’s Scott Kannberg offering bitter memories of the band—prior to its recent reunion. (83 mins.)

Join us after NOISE POP for a party around the corner at MOMO'S to celebrate this year’s Festival. MOMO'S will provide drink specials for all those coming from the Reel Music Festival; just make sure to mention it to your bartender. Also, enjoy complimentary Voodoo Doughnuts!


Sponsored by opbmusic.org and Musicfest NW.

With community support from Voodoo Doughnut.


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Sun, Oct 9, 2011
at 1:30 PM

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THE SOUND OF MUMBAI: A MUSICAL
DIRECTOR: SARAH MCCARTHY
GREAT BRITAIN/INDIA, 2010

“THE SOUND OF MUSIC, with its imagery of mountains and edelweiss, may seem far removed from India’s Maximum City, but this film begs to differ. Director McCarthy follows the transformative experiment of the Bombay Chamber Orchestra as they recruit children from the Mumbai slums—home to half the city’s population—for a one-night performance of the beloved Rodgers and Hammerstein musical. THE SOUND OF MUMBAI: A MUSICAL marvelously conveys the timeless and international appeal of tunes such as ‘Do, Re, Mi’ and ‘My Favorite Things’ as performed by these kids. At the center of the story is 11-year-old Ashish, whose wide smile and optimism can melt the coldest heart. With so many hopes riding on this single performance, the stakes are high for everyone. In telling this story, McCarthy remains mindful of the gaps that lie between dreams and reality, rich and poor. The film never glosses over the difficulty of closing those gaps, but it joyfully expresses the effort of trying.”—Variety. (65 mins.)

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Sun, Oct 9, 2011
at 3:30 PM

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STRAVINSKY: ONCE AT A BORDER
DIRECTOR: TONY PALMER
GREAT BRITAIN, 1982

Made at the request of the Stravinsky Estate to commemorate the 100th anniversary of Stravinsky’s birth, Palmer’s highly-praised film celebrates one of the most important and influential composers of the 20th century. Stravinsky’s three surviving children talk about their father, alongside contributions from the late Madame Vera Stravinsky, Robert Craft, Marie Rambert, George Balanchine, Benny Goodman, Serge Lifar, Jean Cocteau, Serge Diaghilev’s secretary, Vaslav Nijinsky’s daughter, Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov’s granddaughter, Nadia Boulanger, Georges Auric, and many friends and colleagues. Also included in the film are important performances: “Les Noces,” heard here for the first time in its original scoring; “Petrushka,” specially recreated for the film by the Bolshoi Ballet in its 1911 choreography; “The Rite of Spring”; “The Rake’s Progress”; “The Symphony of Psalms”; and much more. “A wholly wonderful film … much of this portrait is a like a miraculous image, filled with the sense of Stravinsky as man and musician, above all as Russian.”—Paul Griffiths. (166 mins.)

Sponsored by All Classical FM.


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Sun, Oct 9, 2011
at 6:30 PM

Sun, Oct 9, 2011
at 8:30 PM

FRANK ZAPPA: PHASE TWO—THE BIG NOTE
DIRECTOR: FRANK SCHEFFER
NETHERLANDS, 2002

Ever seen Frank Zappa without facial hair, playing bicycle spokes on “The Steve Allen Show” in the early ’60s? You can, in Scheffer’s compelling, comprehensive overview of Zappa’s unique achievements, peppered with mesmerizing historical footage and full of surprises. With performances by the Ensemble Modern and the Amsterdam Concertgebouw Orchestra, “pronouncements” by Zappa himself, and interviews with Edgar Varèse, Pierre Boulez, Captain Beefheart, Ian Underwood, George Duke, Haskell Wexler, Gail and Dweezil Zappa, and more. (90 mins.)

*Location: McMenamins Mission Theater, 1624 NW Glisan (21+ only, please)


Sponsored by KBOO Radio and Musicfest NW.

With community support from Voodoo Doughnut.


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Mon, Oct 10, 2011
at 7 PM

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Read Review
BENDA BILILI!
DIRECTOR: RENAUD BARRET, FLORENT DE LA TULLAYE
FRANCE, 2010

Barret and de la Tullaye’s film follows the band’s remarkable fairy tale journey from the streets of Kinshasa, Congo, to become international stars. “Benda Bilili” means “see beyond” in Congolese, a phrase which has profound meaning for this group of musicians which includes five paraplegics and an able-bodied teenager who makes music from a tin can connected to a stick with a piece of nylon. They sing about life on the streets, suffering from polio, sleeping on cardboard, and riding around on customized Mad Max-style tricycles. Fantastic music and remarkable characters make this an uplifting and unforgettable story of dream come reality. (86 mins.)

Sponsored by KBOO Radio.


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Mon, Oct 10, 2011
at 7 PM

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THE BALLAD OF MOTT THE HOOPLE
DIRECTOR: CHRIS HALL, MIKE KERRY
GREAT BRITAIN, 2010

The ballad begins with four lads from Herefordshire who, in the 1960s, fell under the spell of musicians like Little Richard. So impressed were they by the sound of rock and roll that they set off to London to indulge in their newfound passion. With a name taken from a book about an American circus freak, the rock and roll circus had come to town. Legendary and crazy stage shows ensued, along with big hits like “All The Young Dudes,” “Roll Away The Stone,” and “All The Way From Memphis,” but things were not to last. A fascinating documentary about a band that seems as much Spinal Tap as it is rock and roll casualty, the film boasts rare archival footage, concert extracts, and interviews with the band members, and recalls a trip and a band that helped define the golden age of rock and roll. (105 mins.)

*Location: McMenamins Mission Theater, 1624 NW Glisan (21+ only, please)


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Mon, Oct 10, 2011
at 9:15 PM

MR. MOJO RISIN: THE STORY OF L.A. WOMAN
DIRECTOR: MARTIN H. SMITH
GREAT BRITAIN, 2011

To mark the 40th anniversary of the death of Jim Morrison—The Doors’ lead singer and one of rock’s most enigmatic performers—Smith tells the story of the recording and behind-the-scenes drama in producing The Doors’ sixth landmark album in 1971, the last before Morrison’s fabled demise in Paris. Taking its title from the anagram of Morrison’s name—“Mr. Mojo Risin,” which was the refrain he sang on the album’s title track—the film features interviews with Ray Manzarek, John Densmore, Robby Kreiger, and their closest colleagues and collaborators, as well as newly released archival and performance footage and alternate takes from producer Bruce Botnick’s original session recordings. (60 mins.)

*Location: McMenamins Mission Theater, 1624 NW Glisan (21+ only, please)


Sponsored by PDX Pipeline.


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Tue, Oct 11, 2011
at 7 PM

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LIVE AT PRESERVATION HALL: LOUISIANA FAIRYTALE
DIRECTOR: DANNY CLINCH
US, 2011

For fifty years, the Preservation Hall Jazz Band has played at home and on tour around the world to keep the traditions of New Orleans jazz alive. Along the way, they have brought in collaborators of all musical stripes to play, honor, and reinterpret America’s first true art form. LOUISIANA FAIRYTALE documents their collaboration with American rock band My Morning Jacket, showing a legendary group of New Orleans musicians passing on traditions and inspiring a new generation, and featuring an intimate performance by both bands in the French Quarter’s historic Preservation Hall. (69 mins.)

FOLLOWED BY

THE DEVIL’S BOX
DIRECTOR: JASON HAMMOND
US, 2011
Some of the most acclaimed musicians in the country share their dedication and drive as they introduce us to a unique American art form—Texas-style fiddling. Follow five contestants who compete in the renowned Fiddlers’ Frolics and meet the lively characters who inhabit this extended family of passionate musicians. (91 mins.)

TRAILER

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Tue, Oct 11, 2011
at 7 PM

THAT WAS THEN, THIS IS NOW: PORTLAND MUSIC VIDEOS
DIRECTOR: VARIOUS; CURATED BY ALICIA J. ROSE WITH ASSISTANCE BY SARA LUND

VISITING ARTISTS—The Pacific Northwest has been home to some of the most influential musicians in the world, and the music videos made to represent them have been equally important. This program includes a hand-picked selection of vintage and current music video offerings created by a host of talented directors and animators who call Portland home. This program includes Red Fang’s “Wires,” directed by Whitey McConnaughy; Menomena’s “Evil Bee,” directed by Stefan Nadelman; Eluvium’s “The Motion Makes Me Last,” directed by Matt McCormick; Mirah’s “Low Self Control,” featuring Tender Forever and directed by Aubree Bernier-Clarke and Christopher Doulgeris; and the world premiere of Talkdemonic’s “City Sleep,” directed by Alicia J. Rose. (120 mins.)

 

THEN:
Nirvana, "Seasons In The Sun" Lance Bangs
Unwound, "Scarlette" Zak Margolis
Hazel, "Day-Glo" Russell Bates
Melvins, "Hooch" Chel White
Sleater Kinney, "Get Up" Miranda July
Elliot Smith, "Lucky Three" — Jem Cohen

NOW:
Talkdemonic, "City Sleep" — Alicia J. Rose (Premiere)
Guidance Counselor, "Brooklyn" - Jordan Kinley, Tyler Kohlhoff (Premiere)
AgesandAges, "Souvenir" - Hayley Young (Premiere)
Menomena, "Evil Bee" — Stefan Nadelman
Fleet Foxes, "Mykonos" — Sean Pecknold
Modest Mouse, "Whale Song" — Nando Costa
TJO, "A Vertiginous One" — Zak Margolis
Eluvium, "The Motion Makes Me Last" — Matt McCormick
Decemberists, "Solidiering Life" — Dennis Fitzgerald & Greg Brown
DCFC, "Talking Like Turnstiles" — Lance Bangs
Red Fang, "Wires" — Whitey McConnaughy
Mirah, "Low Self Control" — Aubree Bernier-Clarke
Sallie Ford, "I Swear" — Matthew Ross

 

*Location: McMenamins Mission Theater, 1624 NW Glisan (21+ only, please)


Several of the videos’ directors and musicians will be in attendance.

Sponsored by opbmusic.org, Oregon Music News, and Musicfest NW.


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Tue, Oct 11, 2011
at 9:30 PM

FOO FIGHTERS: BACK AND FORTH
DIRECTOR: JAMES MOLL
US, 2011

James Moll’s FOO FIGHTERS follows the band from its earliest days—including footage of the Foos’ first tour, a 1995 series of shows with Eddie Vedder’s Hovercraft side project and Mike Watt—to the recording of its latest release, “Wasting Light.” The candid interviews with everyone from current band member Dave Grohl to past members like Pat Smear lend insight into the last days of Nirvana and the process of reinvention into the Foo Fighters. “For a long time, Dave didn’t want to talk about Nirvana because he wanted to establish himself. That time is long past.” (80 mins.)

*Location: McMenamins Mission Theater, 1624 NW Glisan (21+ only, please)


Foo Fighters director James Moll will be in attendance.

Sponsored by Search Party, KINK.fm, and Musicfest NW.


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Wed, Oct 12, 2011
at 9 PM

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RIDE, RISE, ROAR
DIRECTOR: HILLMAN CURTIS
US, 2010

As the frontman for Talking Heads, David Byrne was the primary focus of one of the best concert films ever, STOP MAKING SENSE. Now a solo artist, Byrne steps in front of the camera again for Hillman Curtis’ documentary of the tour following Byrne’s album-length collaboration with Brian Eno, “Everything That Happens Will Happen Today.” A clever combination of on-stage energy—the band is accompanied by a trio of avant-garde dancers—and intimate interviews with key performers, the film reveals Byrne’s meticulous creative process and the joyous, kinetic results. (87 mins.)

*Location: McMenamins Mission Theater, 1624 NW Glisan (21+ only, please)


Sponsored by opbmusic.org.


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Thu, Oct 13, 2011
at 7 PM

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VINYL: THE ALTERNATE TAKE
DIRECTOR: ALAN ZWEIG
CANADA, 2010

Zweig’s original VINYL (2000) asked the sometimes embarrassing question, “Why collect stacks of records when you don’t have time to hear them?” Experiencing conflicting emotions over his own vinyl habit, he, in Woody Allen/Andy Rooney-esque fashion, interviewed other disturbed packrats, touring dingy, record-packed apartments in search of explanations for the compulsions of possessed discophiles (you know who you are). Comprised of unseen interviews, outtakes, and footage that simply wouldn’t fit into VINYL, Zweig dedicates this new cut to the people who couldn’t get enough of the first film and to “critics who complained the original wasn’t really about record collecting.” Interviewed obsessives include film directors Atom Egoyan, Bruce McDonald, and Guy Maddin. (96 mins.)

Join us after the film for a panel discussion with local record aficionados from Music Millennium, Mississippi Records, Exiled Records, and more.


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Thu, Oct 13, 2011
at 9 PM

RICHARD THOMPSON: SOLITARY LIFE
DIRECTOR: PAUL BERNAYS
GREAT BRITAIN, 2003

In the 1960s, while still a teenager, Richard Thompson wrote generation-defining songs like “Meet on the Ledge.” As founder and member of Fairport Convention with then-wife Linda, and more recently as a solo artist, Thompson’s unique mix of rock and traditional folk music has been massively influential. Captured at home in London and Los Angeles and on tour in England, Bernays’ film mixes rare vintage footage with powerful performances of songs such as “The End of the Rainbow,” “A Heart Needs a Home,” “Solitary Life,” and “Kidzz.” With contributions from Billy Connolly, Bonnie Raitt, Harry Shearer, and the artist’s second wife Nancy Covey. “He’s a quiet guy. He’s almost an anorak, our Richard—you wouldn’t think he’s the guy with the guitar shaking the town!”—Billy Connolly. (60 mins.)

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Sat, Oct 15, 2011
at 12:45 PM

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TEA
DIRECTOR: FRANK SCHEFFER
NETHERLANDS, 2005

TEA is largely based on “Tea Opera” by New York-based Chinese composer Tan Dun, well-known for his Oscar-winning music for the film CROUCHING TIGER, HIDDEN DRAGON. In “Tea Opera,” the music of Tan Dun and the libretto by Xu Ying follow the old “Book of Tea,” in which tea is regarded as a metaphor for the right way of life. The philosophy behind it is that the combination of two apparently hostile elements—water and fire, both needed to prepare tea—can lead to something positive. Alongside the opera material, including conversations with Dun, Ying, and opera director Pierre Audi, Scheffer weaves breathtaking images of tea ceremonies, a Chinese puppet play, and stunning landscapes inspired by tea. (176 mins.)

Sponsored by Lan Su Chinese Garden and The Tao of Tea.


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Sat, Oct 15, 2011
at 6:45 PM

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MOZART’S SISTER
DIRECTOR: RENÉ FÉRET
FRANCE, 2010

Like her brother, Maria Anna Mozart was a musical prodigy ahead of her time, but tragically the 18th century wasn’t fair to women. In this fascinating, fanciful story centering on the other Mozart, 14-year-old “Nannerl,” an accomplished harpsichordist, singer, and violinist, lives in the shadow of her famous younger brother as they travel by coach from one royal court to the next, where the nobility marvel at young Wolfgang’s prodigious talent. As a girl, Nannerl is prohibited by her strict (but loving) father and by society from composing her own music, a restriction under which she chafes. With the encouragement of the handsome French Dauphin, she finds her own ways of challenging the established sexual and social order. Boasting stunning production values (filming took place at Versailles), ethereal music, and winning performances, the film is a treat for the eyes and the ears. (120 mins.)

Sponsored by All Classical FM.


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Sat, Oct 15, 2011
at 9:15 PM

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A STAR IS BORN
DIRECTOR: VANJA KOVACEVIC
SERBIA, 2010

Adversity fuels creativity, as we all know, but perhaps never more so than when one wants to be a rock musician. Vanja and her best friend are big fans of Portland’s The Decemberists. They decide to organize a tribute band but have no experience. Unfortunately for Vanja, whose dream is to be a drummer, counting to four is a challenge—not to mention the fact that she has never actually sat behind a drum kit. But they find musicians (and drums), brand themselves “The Writers of Fiction,” and determinedly rehearse for nine and a half months in preparation for their self-scheduled debut. Inspired by The Decemberists’ “Born for the Scene,” writer/filmmaker/drummer Kovacevic has fashioned a charming ode to the power of music, following your dream, and the euphoria of accomplishment. (75 mins.)

Winner of the Best Regional Documentary and Best Editing Awards, Belgrade Documentary Festival.

Sponsored by PDX Pipeline.


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Sun, Oct 16, 2011
at 2:30 PM

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WHEN THE DRUM IS BEATING
DIRECTOR: WHITNEY DOW
US, 2011

A rhythmic meeting of music and history, WHEN THE DRUM IS BEATING interweaves the stories of Haiti and its most celebrated band, Septentrional. Founded in 1948 by Ulrick Pierre Louis, this rotating mix of Haiti’s finest musicians delivers a passionate mélange of traditional voodoo music and 20-piece Cuban big band rhythms. It’s the “Haitian people’s band” and it has outlasted all of the country’s dictators, political turmoil, natural disasters, and enduring poverty. In addition to a rich musical story, Dow offers a deep understanding of the survival of Haitian culture and a moving portrait of a people’s pride, resistance, despair, and rich artistic tradition. (85 mins.)

Sponsored by KBOO Radio.


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Sun, Oct 16, 2011
at 4:45 PM

IN GOOD TIME: THE PIANO JAZZ OF MARIAN MCPARTLAND
DIRECTOR: HUEY
US, 2011

A native of England, Marian McPartland arrived in America in 1948 and established herself as a leading musician in the male-dominated jazz world. Now 93, McPartland tells her own story—as a musician, composer, and host of National Public Radio’s “Marian McPartland’s Piano Jazz”—through interviews filmed over four years, along with McPartland’s own harmonically rich compositions and piano improvisations. With Dr. Billy Taylor, Elvis Costello, Dave Brubeck, Diana Krall, Bill Frisell, Nnenna Freelon, Renee Rosnes, Dick Hyman, and many others. (90 mins.)

Sponsored by KMHD Jazz Radio.


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Mon, Oct 17, 2011
at 7 PM

OHS AND NWFC PRESENT: THE LOSERS’ CLUB
DIRECTOR: PIERRE OUELLETTE
US, 2003

Portland guitarists and bandleaders Jim Mesi and Steve Bradley became local legends in the ’70s Portland music scene. Mesi, who toured with B.B. King, cemented his position as a world-class blues guitar player, while Bradley became an anchor in the local club scene with his quirky songwriting and inventive rock and roll bands. Over the years, both artists have honed their musical visions to polished perfection, playing on virtually every stage in Portland. Ouellette affectionately explores the lives of these journeymen performers as they rock for audiences that inevitably change but always love them. (60 mins.)


FOLLOWED BY

WHEN STUMPTOWN WAS JUMPTOWN
DIRECTOR: SAMUEL ALLEN
US, 2005
The influx of African-American shipyard workers during World War II created a hungry audience for jazz and blues in Portland. That in turn led to a thriving club scene, regular appearances by all the musical luminaries of the era, and the emergence of top-flight local musicians who called Williams Avenue their home. Inspired by Portland historian Bob Dietsche’s lively book “Jumptown: The Golden Years of Portland Jazz, 1942-1957,” Adams uses stories told to him by Portland jazz artists “Sweet Baby James” Benton, Ray Horn, and Mel Brown, as well as author Dietsche, as he takes us on a search for the musical ghosts of an era when Portland was a 24/7 jazz oasis. (60 mins.)


FOLLOWED BY

PEPPER’S POW-WOW
DIRECTOR: SANDRA OSAWA
US, 1996
For those who heard Portland tenor saxophonist Jim Pepper (1941–1992), he was an unforgettable jazz player. Of Kaw-Creek ancestry, Pepper was one of the innovators of jazz-rock fusion, a gifted composer who successfully melded Native American music with jazz, and an awesomely talented musician, equally at home playing a ballad or straight-up bebop. Seattle filmmaker Sandra Osawa’s fitting tribute traces Pepper’s life; his musical association with such famed collaborators as Ornette Coleman, Don Cherry, Bob Moses, Larry Coryell, and Charlie Haden; the impact of his songs such as “Wichi Tai To” and “Comin’ and Goin’”; and an astonishingly rich and diverse array of performances and recordings. (60 mins.)

Co-presented by the Oregon Historical Society, whose “Oregon Rocks!: A History of Popular Music in Oregon” exhibit runs August 26, 2011 – January 15, 2012.

Media sponsor: Oregon Music News.

TRAILER

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Tue, Oct 18, 2011
at 7 PM

WHO’S CRAZY? A.K.A. DAVID, CHARLIE, AND ORNETTE
DIRECTOR: DICK FONTAINE
GREAT BRITAIN, 1966

A meditation on freedom of expression with three avant-garde musicians under the leadership of composer and multi-instrumentalist Ornette Coleman. Capturing the trio over two days in Paris as they scored a Living Theatre project entitled “Who’s Crazy,” the film famously contains a complete, uninterrupted performance of “Sadness,” one of Coleman’s most memorable and enduring compositions. (30 mins.)

Sponsored by KMHD Jazz Radio.

FOLLOWED BY

WHO IS SONNY ROLLINS?
DIRECTOR: DICK FONTAINE
GREAT BRITAIN, 1968
A moving portrait of jazz great Sonny Rollins during his self-enforced exile from his audience in protest against the Vietnam War. Filmed playing with students in Harlem, in the countryside, and on the Williamsburg Bridge, Rollins’ melodic sense throughout the film is as probing and soulful as ever. (30 mins.)

FOLLOWED BY

SOUND??
DIRECTOR: DICK FONTAINE
GREAT BRITAIN, 1967
Produced by Mike Hodges for the NEW TEMPO series, SOUND?? is a poetic journey from zoo to anechoic chamber in search of the limits of music with blind musician Rahsaan Roland Kirk and composer John Cage. An attempt to make films against conventional televisual rhetoric, NEW TEMPO began as a series of arguments around a single concept (drugs, expendability, celebrity, etc.) between the filmmakers and sculptor Eduardo Paolozzi, architect Cedric Price, and poet Al Alvarez. These discussions were later realized as films, with SOUND?? the first of Fontaine’s two contributions to the series. (30 mins.)

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Fri, Oct 21, 2011
at 7 PM

SEARCHING FOR ELLIOTT SMITH
DIRECTOR: GIL REYES
US, 2009

VISITING ARTIST—Portlander Elliott Smith’s intensely intimate songs helped popularize lo-fi indie rock, a mostly underground genre until Smith’s “Miss Misery,” used in Gus Van Sant’s GOOD WILL HUNTING, was nominated for the Best Song Oscar. Despite the sudden fame and influence, Smith kept a low profile until his sudden suicide in 2003. Assembling material over the last five years, Reyes’ film traces Smith’s evolution from his Lincoln High School days as a National Merit Scholar, to his early work in the Portland rock band Heatmiser, to critical acclaim and his mysterious death at the age of 34. Featuring interviews with Gus Van Sant, fiancée Jennifer Chiba, and many others close to Smith, the pain and genius of his timeless music movingly emerges. (90 mins.)

Gil Reyes will introduce the film.


Sponsored by KZME, opbmusic.org, and Day and Koch, LLP.


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Fri, Oct 21, 2011
at 9:15 PM

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BOB AND THE MONSTER
DIRECTOR: KEIRDA BAHRUTH
US, 2011

VISITING ARTIST—“It’s worth sticking around just to see what happens.” Anyone involved in the LA music scene during the punk, post-punk, and early grunge years knew the notorious musician/mayhem maker Bob Forrest. Today, the rest of the world knows him as a cool-headed empathetic counselor on “Celebrity Rehab.” In this raw, uncompromising portrait mixing clay animation, rare archival performance footage, home video, and interviews with band members from such seminal bands as The Circle Jerks, Fishbone, Jane’s Addiction, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Guns N’ Roses, and Courtney Love, Forrest revisits his heyday as charismatic front man and lyricist for indie band Thelonious Monster and his struggle with the ultimate rock accoutrement: heroin. (85 mins.)

Keirda Bahruth will introduce the film.


Sponsored by Search Party.


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Sat, Oct 22, 2011
at 2 PM

VINICIUS
DIRECTOR: MIGUEL FARIA JR.
BRAZIL, 2005

Brazilian poet, playwright, critic, diplomat, composer, singer, and lyricist Vinicius de Moraes (1913-1980) was the internationally famous lyricist of the bossa nova classics “Garota de Ipanema” (“Girl from Ipanema”) and “Insensatez” (“How Insensitive”) and writer of the play on which the film BLACK ORPHEUS (1959) was based. His life story and musical history are told through archival images combined with interviews with members of his family, friends, partners, and new musical numbers with famous Brazilian singers. (121 mins.)

Join us before the film for a performance by The Brazillionaires, a Portland-based Brazilian jazz band.


Sponsored by KMHD Jazz Radio.


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Sat, Oct 22, 2011
at 4:45 PM

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ZANZIBAR MUSIC CLUB
DIRECTOR: PHILIPPE GASNIER, PATRICE NEZAN
FRANCE, 2009

Given the exotic island nation’s place at the crossroads of the spice route, Taarab, the music of Zanzibar, reflects two millennia of cultural exchange between East and West. Shot in gorgeously evocative bright colors with an immediacy that makes you feel like you’re simply there, ZANZIBAR MUSIC CLUB is an invitation to explore a millenary Muslim culture where traditions are transmitted through music—to discover a world fed with Arabic tones, Latin rhythms, Indian melodies, and African drums. (85 mins.)

Sponsored by KBOO Radio.


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Sat, Oct 22, 2011
at 7 PM

SING YOUR SONG
DIRECTOR: SUZANNE ROSTOCK
US, 2011

SING YOUR SONG blazes through the life of American singer and icon Harry Belafonte. Tracking not simply the arc of his music career but also the impassioned political and social activism that is his true legacy, Rostock weaves a complex, sweeping tale of a man whose life has symbolized so much of America in the 20th century. From McCarthyism to the civil rights movement, from the flush of musical success to the failure of his marriages, this intimate, frank story of a remarkable life provides a stirring call to action for others to follow in its wake. “To call this an epic might seem overblown, but it isn’t just the story of a man, but the story of a country and a century.”—Variety. (104 mins.)

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Sat, Oct 22, 2011
at 9 PM

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INSTRUMENT
DIRECTOR: JEM COHEN
US, 2003

A collaboration between this fiercely independent filmmaker and the Washington, D.C. band Fugazi, INSTRUMENT is a musical document of the DIY band from 1987 through 1996. Portraying the musicians at work and hanging out, the film includes a wide range of materials including concert footage, studio sessions, practice, touring, interviews, and close-up portraits of audience members from around the country. “I thought of bringing ‘dub’ to documentary—of a project where unadulterated real-time performances; abstract, rough-hewn Super-8 collages; and archival artifacts would collide and conjoin in a way that honestly represented musical experience.”—Jem Cohen. (115 mins.)

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Sun, Oct 23, 2011
at 5 PM

CHICO & RITA
DIRECTOR: JAVIER MARISCAL, FERNANDO TRUEBA
SPAIN/GREAT BRITAIN, 2010

Vibrant animation, passionate Latin storytelling, and music from the greatest period of creativity in Cuban-American jazz meld to chronicle the musical romance between Chico, a handsome piano player, and the beautiful Rita, an enchanting singer in 1948 Havana. Traversing the glamorous jazz clubs of New York City, Paris, Hollywood, and Las Vegas, with music orchestrated by Cuban pianist, bandleader, and composer Bebo Valdés, the film also features spirited re-recordings of standards by Nat King Cole, Charlie Parker, Chano Pozo, Dizzy Gillespie, and more, from a range of contemporary singers such as Idania Valdés, Carlos Sarduy, Horacio Hernández, Rolando Luna, Germán Velazco, and Jorge Reyes. (90 mins.)

Sponsored by ASIFA Portland and Miracle Theatre Group.


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