Venue: Oddball Films, 275 Capp Street, San Francisco
Admission: $10.00 Limited Seating RSVP to: 415-558-8117 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Holy Ghost People (B+W, 1967)
Rightly hailed by Margaret Mead as one of the best ethnographic documentary films ever made, and a staple of every documentary film studies course Holy Ghost People by the late San Francisco filmmaker Peter Adair ("Stopping History", "Word is Out") examines the Scrabble Creek, West Virginia Pentecostal congregation whose fundamentalist philosophy encourages a literal interpretation of the Bible.
The film reveals the religious fervor, the faith healing, the trances, the glossolalia (speaking in tongues), the anointing, the ingestion of poison(Strychnine) and the use of rattlesnakes in the church's religious services. Shot inside the cramped interior of a poor, rural church Adair allows the raw power and the purity of the congregation's faith speak for itself and documents it unflinchingly.
Says one member:
"I could feel the quickening power of the holy ghost... I would dance under the power, and the quickening power would get on me."
Inside the church people surrender to the spirit, shrieking, flailing, crumpling to the floor, talking in tongues, drinking poison, and handling snakes as the ultimate test of their faith."Holy Ghost People" is visceral and jarring, dizzying and frenetic and captures the deep faith, ecstatic states and lethal consequences of their belief.
Betty Boop in Red Hot Mamma (B+W, 1934)
It was a cold and snowy night and Betty is freezing cold in her skimpy nighty, but when she blazes a fire in the fireplace, she finds herself in a cartoon inferno, face to face with the Devil himself, and you know no man is a match for Miss Boop!
Satan-Tease (B+W, 1955)
Burlesque queen Betty Dolan brings new meaning to the phrase dancing with the devil. Cleverly costumed, Miss Dolan's right hand is the hand of the devil and she can't stop it from trying to get to third base. Strange and erotic on many different levels, it must be seen to be believed!
Invocation of My Demon Brother (Color, 1969)
In Invocation of My Demon Brother filmmaker Kenneth Anger creates an altered state of consciousness through the use of cinematic and psycho-spiritual magick techniques.
The film is described by notorious avant-garde filmmaker Kenneth Anger as “An assault on the sensorium” features “underworld powers gathering at a midnight mass to shadow forth Lord Lucifer in a gathering of spirits”. Invocation is a quintessential late 1960 freak-out, containing a montage of drug use, pagan rituals, an albino, stock footage of the Vietnam War, the Rolling Stones in concert and abstract imagery all played back at various speeds. The film is accompanied by a repetitive, droning Moog musical score created by Mick Jagger. In the words of avant-garde film critic P. Adams Sitney “It is Anger's most metaphysical film: here he eschews literal connections, makes images jar against one another, and does not create a center of gravity through which the collage is to be interpreted... the burden of synthesis falls upon the viewer.”
Other shorts include “Eucharist”, the 60s neo-psychedelic short produced by the Lutheran Church, the trailer for the adult feature Satan's Cheerleaders and more!
For The Early Birds:
Facts of Faith (Color, 1956)The Moody Institute of Science, founded under the auspices of the Moody Bible Institute, an evangelical group started by Irwin Moon in San Francisco in 1938, produced a number of religious cult science films that were intended to demonstrate intelligent design through scientific experiments. In this electrifying short, Moon runs thousands of volts of god’s creation though his entire body. A stunner!