Thursday, January 3, 2013

The Electric Eel (1954)

WHO: Irwin Moon, an evangelical clergyman who found scientific demonstrations to be an attention-getting vehicle for spreading the Christian gospel. Before he began turning his attention to movie-making in the 1940s, he was perhaps best known for a stunt in which he claimed to feed a million-volt electrical charge into his body.

WHAT: This is the only one of Moon's Moody Institute films I've seen, and it was only a month ago that I saw it. But although I'm not sure if I knew more about electric eels before or after watching this gimmicky on-film demonstration, I definitely recommend viewing it if you want a jolt of unusual mid-century Americana. The segment where he shocks a set of his staffers is especially entertaining.

WHERE/WHEN: 8PM tonight at Oddball Films, the largest 16mm film archive in Northern California. Seating is limited, so it's best to RSVP by e-mailing or calling ahead at (415) 558-8117. 

WHY: Have you got something better to do on a Thursday night?

HOW: Most Oddball programs are sourced from 16mm films found in the archive. Tonight's program includes a half-dozen other Irwin Moon films in addition to The Electric Eel.

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