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For the first time ever, the Association of Moving Image Archivists (AMIA) has made their annual, members-only event accessible to the public. They have assembled a program of 22 strange, astonishing, and hilarious films and videos from the world’s moving image archives to showcase their fantastic collections and to share the incredible work of the archivists who discover and preserve them for future generations to enjoy!
1. Bend It (1981)
From the famed LGBTQ artists' only feature film, The World of Gilbert & George (1981), Gilbert & George use Dave Dee, Dozy, Beaky, Mick & Tich's 1960s pop hit, "Bend It," and deliver a new, bent version.
2. Glacier Hike (1926)
Filmed by glaciologist William Osgood Field (1904-1994), these scenes show men packing supplies before hiking across a glacier and up the side of a snow-covered mountain in southeast Alaska. Field’s work from the 1920s through 1960s advanced scientific knowledge about glaciers and global climate change. Original nitrate copied to safety film by filmmaker in 1970s.
3. Mr. Everybody and the Regulations
A comic animation on the rules for visiting a museum.
4. 4 Kings promo trailer (1961)
A promotional trailer for the film 4 Kings, which includes footage from the premiere with actors on stage and live music, followed by footage from the film. The song is from the promotional record, which was played along with the trailer when it was screened. The film has been lost, so this is all that remains of 4 Kings.
5. Curious Alice (1971)
Alice encounters a bottle that says “Drink Me,” and after a half-second’s consideration, drinks the entire bottle and enters a fantasy world. Alice learns from her new friends the Mad Hatter (LSD), the March Hare (amphetamines), the Dormouse (barbiturates), and the King of Hearts (heroin). The events of Curious Alice play out as a fun expression of Alice’s drug trip, effectively cancelling out the film’s anti-drug message.
6. Pass to Tomorrow
A US soldier during World War II takes a tour of developing Israel and the new city Tel Aviv.
7. Highlights and Shadows (1938)
Made as an industrial film for the Eastman Kodak Research Laboratories, James Sibley Watson’s Highlights and Shadows illuminates the complex mechanisms that produce photographic equipment and film using stark lighting and multiple exposures. A superior example of avant-garde esthetics applied to corporate filmmaking.
8. Josephine Baker Visits Volendam (1928)
Josephine Baker took Europe by storm in 1925 and remained one of its most celebrated artists until the outbreak of WWII. On 24 August 1928, she visited Volendam in North Holland where she was filmed by famed illustrator Mac-Djorski. Dancing the Charleston in clogs isn’t easy!
9. Paramount News Presents: U.S. Gets Art Treasury
The United States gets an art treasury: $15,000,000 for the National Gallery of Art, open to the public. The film was originally included within the Paramount Newsreel, released February 1941, Issue 53.
10. Aliens from Outer Space
In this animated educational film, a talking fire-hydrant, Big Red, teaches extraterrestrials fire safety when they arrive in Seattle. Written and produced by the Seattle Fire Department.
11. Behind the Scenes of "Hairspray" (1988)
A Baltimore local television station's behind-the-scenes story on John Waters' feature film, Hairspray. This story was made for the station's extremely popular program, "Evening Magazine."
12. Loading Cattle through the Surf (c. 1950)
Recorded by an unknown filmmaker who documented a trip from California to Hawaii, the footage reveals the malihini (newcomer) experience of ranching in post-WWII Hawaii Island. An invaluable cultural and historical document, this film offers modern viewers an experiential view into an era that is slowly slipping beyond recollection.
13. New Orleans Street Parade (1968)
This film depicts the Onward Brass Band parading through the French Quarter of New Orleans and picking up second liners along the way. The parade and film were organized by the Smithsonian Anacostia Community Museum for an exhibition on jazz that ran from December 1, 1968, to January 15, 1969.
14. All-American News (August 1942)
All-American News was the first newsreel produced for an African-American audience. Made in the 1940s and 1950s, they were originally intended to encourage African-Americans to participate in and support the war effort and to reflect an African-American perspective on world and national events.
15. Perjetesi (Eternity) (1973)
Can heartbeats be reactionary? Yes, if they are the only sonic element of a montage-heavy documentary about the war dead. Made just before Enver Hoxha’s cultural purges in 1974, Dhimitër Anagnosti’s formalist, wonderfully edited affair was banned immediately on completion. It finally premiere in a restored version in 2016.
16. What's Uptown? A View From The Streets
What's Uptown? was produced in the mid-1970s by Marcie Telander and Terry Moyemont in the emerging style of portable video journalism. It documents the diverse Uptown neighborhood of Chicago, focusing on its music.
17. Transitions (1978)
Shot on Super 8 Kodachrome film, Iletha Clifton's Transitions chronicles the anticipation of new life arriving—and another one ending, making room for the cycle of life to start over again.
18. Universal Pictures Restoration Reel
Since committing to its film restoration program in 2012, Universal Pictures has restored 100 classic titles, including All Quiet on the Western Front, The Birds, Dracula (1931), Frankenstein, Jaws, Out of Africa, The Man Who Laughs, and Scarface (1932). This reel highlights the restoration process and some of the notable restoration work that has been completed.
19. The Lighter Side of "In the Life"
For twenty years, the landmark PBS series In The Life delivered enlightened journalism and advocacy for LGBT people at a time when the queer community was often invisible in mainstream mass media. The show also often used humor and parodies to goose its audience.
20. Claudia (c. 1965)
Claudia, Version One is an experimental film by Argentine-American filmmaker Jorge Prelorán, best known for his ethnobiographical documentaries. Using documentary footage, animation, sound effects, and music to portray childhood play, the film has four versions, each with a different musical score to show how the child's character changes according to the music.
21. Bout-de-Zan et le crocodile (1913)
In this adventure, the naughty Bout-de-Zan (René Poyen) gets revenge on a man in the park. He steals his dog, dresses him in a crocodile costume, and lets him go back to his owner. The man is shocked to be chased by a crocodile!
22. Kreisler Bandstand Starring Cab Calloway and his Orchestra (1951)
Get ready to blow your wigs watching this hummer of a kinescope, the only-known copy of a March 21, 1951, broadcast sponsored by Jacques Kreisler Watches. Killer-diller hep-cat Cab Calloway hypes some hard jive and performs with his orchestra. Everything will be kopasetic!