Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Invocation of My Demon Brother (1969)

WHO: Kenneth Anger made and appears in this short film. It features a Mick Jagger-created electronic soundtrack, and a brief cameo by the founder of the Church of Satan Anton LaVay.

WHAT: When I first saw the bulk of Kenneth Anger's films all in one go at a Castro Theatre screening with Anger present, this was the one that I was most drawn to, not because I have any particular interest in the occult or Satanism (though I love Halloween, and was always fascinated by the black house a few blocks from mine growing up, which is where LaVay lived and reportedly kept a pet tiger) but because the combination of its alienating soundtrack and its unusual editing effects seemed most "of a piece" to a budding cinephile. Since that day twelve and a half years ago I've grown more appreciative of other Anger films but this one still retains its eerie power. Here's a great blog collecting writing on the film.

WHERE/WHEN: Tonight on a program starting at 8:00 at Oddball Films

WHY: Tonight's Oddball program is Satanic Sinema: The Devil Gets His Due. Also featuring animation like the Betty-Boop-in-Hell cartoon Red Hot Mamma and the 1970s Canadian TV special that haunted me as a youngster, The Devil and Daniel Mouse, as well as devilish live-action curiosities featuring burlesque dancer Betty Dolan, occult icon Sybil Leek, and future president Ronald Reagan.

It's part of a full week of screenings at Oddball, a venue that normally opens its doors to the public only on Thursdays and Fridays, but is going full-throttle for Halloween week, with a screening of the definitive Bible-Belt haunted house documentary Hell House Wednesday night, a shorts program including the Mario Bava-esque oral hygiene scare film The Haunted Mouth on Halloween itself, and a spooky animation spotlight on Friday, November 1st.

HOW: All of tonight's films are expected to screen on 16mm.

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