Monday, January 21, 2013

Wattstax (1973)

WHO: Directed by Mel Stuart, who also directed Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory, and who died last year.
WHAT: A concert film of the 1972 Watts Summer Festival, featuring performances by Isaac Hayes, the Staple Singers, and many other musicians then on the Stax record label. It celebrates the 40th anniversary of its release this February.
WHERE/WHEN: At 3:00 and 7:00 at the Castro Theatre today only.
WHY: What better way to cinematically celebrate Martin Luther King, Jr.'s birthday (observed) than with music? The concert opened with a rousing speech by Jesse Jackson, and he's not the only civil rights leader to be seen on stage and in the film, made only a few years after King's assassination.
HOW: 35mm print. The co-feature Something From Nothing: the Art of Rap will be shown digitally.

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