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“The World of the Benshi” World Tour April 18-20 UCLA Film And Television Archive

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“The World of the Benshi” World Tour
April 18-20 UCLA Film And Television Archive

Posted by Robin Menken

The Art of the Benshi 2024 World Tour presented by the Yanai Initiative for Globalizing Japanese Humanities and the UCLA Film & Television Archive, which ran April 5 – 26, 2024, included 12 dates at six venues in five cities: New York, Washington, D.C., Chicago, Los Angeles and Tokyo.

The idea of the ambitious tour was the result of discussions during a three day symposium (and four film/benshi screening) held at UCLA Film And Television Archive, Hammer Museum in 2019.

At the 2019 symposium, Yanai introduced the first group benshi performance seen since 1920. “Not Blood Relations” and “Jiraiya the Hero” were both shown with narration provided by a trio of benshi. The modern benshi’s had never performed in this style, which died out in 1920 as result of criticism by the Pure Film Movement reformists.

To kick off the five performances in LA, The Japan Foundation, LA co-presented with the Yanai Initiative a lecture & demonstration on “The World of the Benshi" at Japan House.

Mr. Ichiro Kataoka, the lead benshi of the tour, gave a short demonstration and answered questions about the artistry and history of this enchanting live performance tradition.

Mr. Kataoka’s collection of rare benshi memorabilia is featured in the exquisite Tour catalogue, available at
https://yanai-initiative.ucla.edu/explore#publications.

Benshi Ichirō Kataoka performed "Blood Spattered Takadanobaba" (1928).

Over the following LA performances, LA devotees
had an opportunity to watch this early action film narrated by the other master benshi, demonstrating the
personal style, humor and didacticism of each performer.

Three scholars, Dr. Kotaro Shibata, Dr. Makiko Kamiya, and Dr. Fumito Shirai discussed the world of benshi – or “movie orators” – and the history of Japanese silent films.

Dr. Kotaro Shibata, who contributed the article "And the Shamisen Played On: Changing Silent Film Music in Japan" to the tour catalogue, showed slides of Japanese silent theaters (which introduced audiences to western music) and discussed the Japanese modifications of western silent film scores and musical arrangements.

Dr. Shibata, touched on the Pure Film Movement which advocated actresses rather than traditional Kabuki style female impersonators and other Western film innovations like closes ups and shorter takes.

Some of the critics of the PFM became directors (like Norimasa Kaeriyama, whose film "The Glow of Life" (1918), which was one of the first films to use actresses (ie: Harumi Hanayagi).

The Pure Film Movement’s attack on benshi lead to some changes. The introductory remarks that benshi's gave prior to the showing of a film, as well as group "kowairo setsumei" died out, leaving a form of setsumei performed by a solo benshi, combining narration, commentary, and performed dialog while the film was showing. This was the setsumei (“explained”) performance style of the Golden Age of benshi (1925-1932).

Dr. Shibata revealed the discovery of Film Narration in countries as diverse as Korea, Russian Czechoslovakia and France, and showed a fascinating clip of Rene Clair's 1947 "Man About Town" AKA "Silence Is Golden".

Employing research materials from the Hirano Collection, Dr. Fumito Shirai discussed how silent film musical-accompaniment scores, imported from overseas, were accepted in Japan and how they were combined with Japanese instruments and musical compositions when used.

In the early days of silent film, Japanese films were
narrated by groups of benshi ("kowairo setsumei”) at the

Interview with up-and-coming actor Ian Bjorn

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By DJ Cook

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Ian Bjorn is an up-and-coming actor who was born in Switzerland to a Dutch father and a Danish mother. He moved to the UK at a young age and lives there today. This is Ian's first time in Cannes. He is excited to see what the festival has to offer!

 

What are some recent projects that you’ve been working on? 

“The most recent one wrapped up about a month ago, called Sanctum (upcoming). It was a series where I played a god-worshiping cannibal. What does that mean? Basically, I got to run around trying to break into this church to cleanse this pregnant woman of her sins by being a cannibal. I don’t want to ruin it, so I’m not going to say too much.”

“The one before that was a feature film called Dr. Sander's Sleep Cure (2024), which we filmed in Estonia. It’s about a man who struggles to sleep. He finds this tape that puts him to sleep, but in return, he gets these nightmares that get progressively worse. I played a supporting role as an RAF soldier, so I got to walk around in a pretty little hat figuring out if I was dead, in a dream, or in real life.”

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Ian Bjorn - Dr. Sander’s Sleep Cure: Photo by Mart Sander

 

How did you get started as an actor? 

“By accident, actually. So, five years ago, I was just happy doing sports. I was playing football, doing athletics, and then a friend of mine, Harry Gray, came up to me and goes, ‘Ian, I want to make a short film.’ I said, ‘Fantastic, what’s that got to do with me?’ He goes, ‘Ian, I want you to be in there.’ ‘As like, in the background?’ ‘No, you’re going to play the lead.’

“So we ended up making five short films together, then he stopped making films, and I continued with sports and finishing school, and then it got to lockdown. And, like everyone, I had time to reflect on my life, and I thought, ‘What do I want to do?’ I really enjoyed acting; let’s give it a go. So I put my all into it, doing lessons, firstly over Zoom, and then in the studio as theatre. And then, build my way up, build my experience up, by making a short film, applying for lots of roles, making contacts... From there, I’ve ended up just building up the experience, and I haven’t looked back.”

 

What would be your dream project or dream director to work with?

“The genre would be action or psychological thriller, just because I love pairing acting with my sporting background. I can then do some action as I’m currently training in gymnastics and martial arts, so I’d love to bring that side of my life in with the acting side. So a nice action psychological thriller where I can unnerve the audience. I would love to play a serial killer, a psychopath;

Cannes Impact Day May 16 Panel line-up

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IMPACT AT CANNES MARCHÉ DU FILM 2024 ADDRESSES THE FUTURE OF DEMOCRACY, WOMEN’S RIGHTS & MENTAL HEALTH ACTION
 
The forthcoming Cannes Marché du Film impACT programme 2024 led by Think-Film Impact Production will highlight innovation, creativity and action in an action-focused day centred on the socially pressing topics of democracy, women’s rights and mental health. 

The programme is sponsored by SHOWTIME/MTV Entertainment Studios and Maybelline, amongst others, and includes as speakers Oscar-winning director of 20 Days in Mariupol Mstyslav Chernov, award-winning journalist, author, translator, producer and Golden Globe Associate Tina Jøhnk Christensen, and Vice President of Social Impact for SHOWTIME/MTV Entertainment Studios at Paramount Global, Noopur Agarwal.

On Thursday May 16th, 2024 as part of Festival de Cannes’ and Marché du Film’s investment in corporate social responsibility, the Plages des Palmes will play host to the fourth annual Cannes impACT programme, a series of high-powered conversations convened by film impact industry leaders Think-Film Impact Production. Speakers will reflect on pressing current issues and trends, and present solutions around these that can be mainstreamed for social impact. These conversations as a whole hope to inform film industry business practices and build a more socially responsible creative economy, encouraging a progressive transformation of the global film and entertainment industry through tangible commitments and action.

The impACT programme commences at 09:00 with a morning interactive wellness session to clear the mind and rejuvenate after the first night of Cannes festivities. Creative professionals are at particular risk of stress, burnout, and exhaustion; this window to prioritise personal mental health amidst the business of the Cannes Film Festival is led by Alexandra Miles, Founder of non-profit Project Blackbird, and includes presentation of a short film and peer-encouragement journal prompt reflection. All are welcome to attend and participate.

Afternoon panel conversations run from 14:30 to 17:00. 

The first panel fixes its gaze on the essential need for stronger female representation in film, and considers how impact can be leveraged to level the playing field. Speakers include award-winning screenwriter and Academy Member Misan Sagay, and award-winning journalist, author, translator, producer and Golden Globe Associate Tina Jøhnk Christensen. Talented directing duo Nada Riyadh and Ayman El Amir will introduce their female-led documentary about womanhood and women’s access to art, “The Brink of Dreams” which follows a rebellious group of girls who formed a street theatre troupe in a remote Egyptian village. The film was selected for Cannes Critics’ Week and premieres on May 17th 2024, 11:30 at Miramar. 

The second panel unpacks through a lens of mental health how narrative and production investment in foundational societal considerations can vitally unlock creative potential and generate transformative economic and impact returns. Celebrating Mental Health Action Day, Vice President of Social Impact for SHOWTIME/MTV Entertainment Studios at Paramount Global, Noopur Agarwal, will present the Read more

SIFF 2024 Lineup is Live

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siff.jpg

SIFF announces lineup, tributes & premieres slated for the

50th Seattle International Film Festival, returning May 9-19

 

261 films with 18 World, 26 North American, and 14 U.S. Premieres make up the lineup for the Festival’s 50th anniversary, screening at venues across Seattle, including SIFF’s newly opened

SIFF Cinema Downtown

 

SEATTLE – SIFF announced today the lineup of films included in the 50th Seattle International Film Festival, to be held May 9–19 at venues across Seattle and followed by a week of select virtual screenings on the SIFF Channel May 20–27. The Festival will screen 261 films representing 84 countries/regions, including 92 features, 47 documentaries, five archival features, two special tributes, two secret screenings, and 115 short films.

 

In addition to the full lineup, SIFF announced today that Seattle native and Emmy®, Golden Globe®, SAG Award®, and Critics Choice Award-winning actress Jean Smart will be awarded The Hollywood Reporter’s Trailblazer Award for her contributions to storytelling on film, television, and the stage. The event will feature a screening of an episode from the new season of the Max Original comedy series Hacks, followed by the Trailblazer trophy presentation and a conversation between Smart and THR Contributing Editor Stacey Wilson Hunt. 

 

The Festival will open with Josh Margolin’s action comedy Thelma from Magnolia Pictures, which will screen at The Paramount Theatre during the Festival's Opening Night on May 9. The film will be followed by a Q&A with Writer & Director Josh Margolin, lead actress June Squibb, and producers Zoë Worth and Chris Kaye. Following the Q&A, there will be an after-party onstage and outside on Ninth Ave.

 

SIFF will honor June Squibb with the 2024 Golden Space Needle Award for Outstanding Contribution to Cinema for the unforgettable work she’s presented throughout the span of her career. The Oscar-nominated actress and lead of the Festival’s Opening Night film,

Thelma, will be presented the award at a special Tribute Event on May 11 at SIFF Cinema Downtown with a conversation moderated by Variety’s Jenelle Riley. Prior to the event, there will be an Honoree Brunch with Squibb at Palace Kitchen.

 

Closing the Festival is Greg Kwedar’s Sing Sing from A24, which will screen on May 18 at SIFF Cinema Downtown. Director and co-writer Greg Kwedar will be in attendance and participate in a Q&A after the screening along with members of the film’s ensemble cast, who will receive a Golden Space Needle Award for excellence in Ensemble Acting. A Closing Night party will follow at the Museum of History and Industry (MOHAI).

 

Additional highlights showing throughout the Festival include Focus Features’ Sundance award-winner Dìdi (

弟弟), a directorial debut from Oscar® nominee Sean Wang (SIFF 2023 Grand Jury winner for Live Action short); Neon’s Babes written by and starring Ilana Glazer and directed by debut helmer Pamela Adlon; IFC’s stirring and emotional Ghostlight which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival; Harmony Korine’s latest boundary-pushing work AGGRO DR1FT; a new 4K restoration of Wim Wenders’ iconic Wings of Desire, in celebration of the 70th anniversary of German Films; and an exciting new slate of cINeDIGENOUS films, including the world premiere of Molokaʻi Bound, directed by Alika Tengan (Kanaka Maoli).

 

A variety of film and event passes are on sale now. Ticke

IFFR 2024 recordED strong visitor numbers during impactful edition

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M. Raihan Halim’s progressive and provocative Malaysian comedy La Luna brought the 2024 edition of International Film Festival Rotterdam (IFFR) to a close, receiving a resounding ovation at packed screens for its European premiere.

The festival recorded 253,500 visits across its programme of 424 films, including 183 world premieres, complemented with a variety of multi-disciplinary programmes including Art Directions, IFFR Talks and more. Highlights from the Talks programme included Sandra Hüller, Marco Bellocchio, Billy Woodberry and Amanda Kramer with Debbie Harry who stated that “film festivals are such an important part for directors and filmmakers, especially for independence”, chiming strongly with IFFR’s mission of championing independent filmmakers and artists, creating space for dialogue and expanding people’s views of the world and each other.

The festival also presented its final prize with Agnieszka Holland’s Green Border winning the Audience Award. As previously announced, Tanaka Toshihiko’s Rei won IFFR’s coveted Tiger Award, while the Iranian drama The Old Bachelor (dir. Oktay Baraheni) on the VPRO Big Screen Award.

 
 
IFFR 2024 winners celebrate  
 
 
 

Festival Director Vanja Kaludjercic: “This edition we saw with great pleasure how our discoveries found their audiences. From the joy of our opening night, to the excitement of welcoming superstars and cinematic giants, to witnessing the blossoming of future greats like the Tiger Award winner, there was a special atmosphere at the festival this edition. We take pride in making a programme that foregrounds the unexpected and unique – and that challenges and enriches. Our Focus programmes, like the first-of-their kind retrospectives on Chilean cinema in exile, Italian genre masters Manetti Bros. and Hong Kong provocateur Scud stand as a testament to that and the spaces we create. As we look ahead, we see that our ideas and aspirations connect strongly with the audience, strengthening us for the years to come.”

Managing Director Clare Stewart: “We are thrilled that, despite a reduction in scale to match our resources, the 53rd edition of IFFR has maintained its public reach, exceeded ticket sales targets and increased our overall occupancy rate to 75%. This affirms our strategic focus on ‘impact over scale’ and puts us in a great position to continue the recalibration of IFFR for future years. 

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A Week of French Language Cinema

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A Week of French Language Cinema 

 

Posted By Robin Menken

 

For the fifteenth year straight, in collaboration with the Consulates General of Canada, Belgium, Switzerland, France, the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg, the Quebec Government Office in Los Angeles, and Le Lycée Français de Los Angeles, Théâtre Raymond Kabbaz (TRK) presents A Week of French Language Cinema, with nightly screenings of critically acclaimed French language films, from March 19th through March 25th. All films are subtitled in English.

 

A Week of French Language Cinema is organized annually to coincide with the International Organization of La Francophonie (OIF)’s celebration of the French language and Francophone culture on March 20th. The event is the perfect showcase to present the artistry of French-language voices the world over. 

 

"Humanist Vampire Seeking Consenting Suicidal Person"- Canadian filmmaker Ariane Louis-Seize’s debut feature is a witty dark comedy, a sort of Romeo and Vampira.

 

Amusing world building and a witty cast portray the coming of age woes of young Sasha (Sara Montpetit), who’s just too compassionate to kill and feed. She’s kept alive by refrigerated blood packs, as her parents quarrel.

 

A black comedy scene of little vampire Sasha's birthday party sets the film in motion. Decades pass. Unwilling vampire, teenager-like Sasha is an unending stress to her bickering family 

 

Sara Montpetit (wonderfully matched by actress Lilas-Rose Cantin who plays Sasha as a little vampire) has a face that speaks volumes. She’s a Goth glamor girl. Her dead-pan stares hold hidden depths.

 

Young looking Sophie’s a late bloomer. Her fangs have never dropped. Unable to feed she spends her nights busking, playing Cello outside the local bowling alley. 

 

One night she spots Paul (Félix-Antoine Bénard) on the roof of the bowling alley where he works, planning to jump. He puts it off.

 

Sensitive teenager Paul spends his days at school bullied by a bunch of thugs. He can’t tell his mom. Félix-Antoine Bénard plays Paul as a crestfallen innocent willing to follow Sasha's lead.

 

The next time Sasha spots him, they lock eyes. Paul flees, right into a wall, knocking himself out. Scenting his blood, Sasha’s fangs finally emerge. Afraid of her teenage (blood) lust it’s Sasha’s turn to flee. (She’s already 62 years-old and fang-shy).

 

This works as a metaphor, Sasha is afraid of her adult sexuality. So is Paul. They connect as two awkward virgins. Sasha explains her issue to Paul framing their various problems as each other’s solutions. It’s a morbidly endearing perfect match.

 

When Sophie backs off from biting his neck, besotted Paul hurriedly offers to take off his shirt.

 

Steve Laplante is hilarious as a protective father who resists forcing Sophie to feed, while Mom (Sophie Cadieux) fumes. She’s sick of hunting for the whole family and worries it will go on for the next 300 years.

Eventually they lock the fridge and send Sasha off to room with her bawdy older cousin Denise (Noémie O’Farrell). Efficient vampire Denise, who uses her sexual charms and promises of kinky sex to lure her dinner dates (make that dinner) promises to make Sophie into the vampire they all know she can be.

A Week of French Language Cinema

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A Week of French Language Cinema 

 

Posted By Robin Menken

 

For the fifteenth year straight, in collaboration with the Consulates General of Canada, Belgium, Switzerland, France, the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg, the Quebec Government Office in Los Angeles, and Le Lycée Français de Los Angeles, Théâtre Raymond Kabbaz (TRK) presents A Week of French Language Cinema, with nightly screenings of critically acclaimed French language films, from March 19th through March 25th. All films are subtitled in English.

 

A Week of French Language Cinema is organized annually to coincide with the International Organization of La Francophonie (OIF)’s celebration of the French language and Francophone culture on March 20th. The event is the perfect showcase to present the artistry of French-language voices the world over. 

 

"Humanist Vampire Seeking Consenting Suicidal Person"- Canadian filmmaker Ariane Louis-Seize’s debut feature is a witty dark comedy, a sort of Romeo and Vampira.

 

Amusing world building and a witty cast portray the coming of age woes of young Sasha (Sara Montpetit), who’s just too compassionate to kill and feed. She’s kept alive by refrigerated blood packs, as her parents quarrel.

 

A black comedy scene of little vampire Sasha's birthday party sets the film in motion. Decades pass. Unwilling vampire, teenager-like Sasha is an unending stress to her bickering family 

 

Sara Montpetit (wonderfully matched by actress Lilas-Rose Cantin who plays Sasha as a little vampire) has a face that speaks volumes. She’s a Goth glamor girl. Her dead-pan stares hold hidden depths.

 

Young looking Sophie’s a late bloomer. Her fangs have never dropped. Unable to feed she spends her nights busking, playing Cello outside the local bowling alley. 

 

One night she spots Paul (Félix-Antoine Bénard) on the roof of the bowling alley where he works, planning to jump. He puts it off.

 

Sensitive teenager Paul spends his days at school bullied by a bunch of thugs. He can’t tell his mom. Félix-Antoine Bénard plays Paul as a crestfallen innocent willing to follow Sasha's lead.

 

The next time Sasha spots him, they lock eyes. Paul flees, right into a wall, knocking himself out. Scenting his blood, Sasha’s fangs finally emerge. Afraid of her teenage (blood) lust it’s Sasha’s turn to flee. (She’s already 62 years-old and fang-shy).

 

This works as a metaphor, Sasha is afraid of her adult sexuality. So is Paul. They connect as two awkward virgins. Sasha explains her issue to Paul framing their various problems as each other’s solutions. It’s a morbidly endearing perfect match.

 

When Sophie backs off from biting his neck, besotted Paul hurriedly offers to take off his shirt.

 

Steve Laplante is hilarious as a protective father who resists forcing Sophie to feed, while Mom (Sophie Cadieux) fumes. She’s sick of hunting for the whole family and worries it will go on for the next 300 years.

Eventually they lock the fridge and send Sasha off to room with her bawdy older cousin Denise (Noémie O’Farrell). Efficient vampire Denise, who uses her sexual charms and promises of kinky sex to lure her dinner dates (make that dinner) promises to make Sophie into the vampire they all know she can be.

50th Seattle International Film Festival Celebrates Indigenous Filmmakers

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1080x360
50th Seattle International Film Festival Celebrates Indigenous Filmmakers
with the return of 4th World Media Lab & cINeDIGENOUS program

In partnership with SIFF Programmer Tracy Rector,
4th World Media Lab and cINeDIGENOUS
continue to celebrate Indigenous filmmakers

 

 The 50th Seattle International Film Festival will see the return of 4th World Media Lab and the Festival’s cINeDIGENOUS program, amplifying Indigenous filmmakers from across the globe. The cINeDIGENOUS program will screen films throughout the Festival from May 9-19 at venues across Seattle. 

In its 10th year, the 4th World Media Lab provides Indigenous media creators a progressive immersion into film learning and industry exploration through a cultural lens. In partnership with global Indigenous organizations and industry experts, 4th World offers the fellows a master class of hands-on experiences, producer coaching, pitch training, community centered gatherings, and global networking in the SIFF urban festival atmosphere. In addition to the Seattle International Film Festival, the lab includes residencies with Big Sky Documentary Film Festival and Camden International Film Festival.

Seattle International Film Festival Programmer Tracy Rector has been a pivotal part of developing Indigenous educational workshops, supporting Indigenous-led community events and film presentations at the Festival for 19 years. With the return of the 4th World Media Lab and cINeDIGENOUS program to this year’s festival, Tracy continues to uplift, amplify and celebrate Indigenous made stories and filmmakers.

“SIFF has been an incredible partner over the last two decades, standing in solidarity with Indigenous peoples globally by spotlighting their films, perspectives and helping them to access resources for their work, career and communities.” says Rector, global Indigenous content programmer. 

The cINeDIGENOUS program has a total of 11 features and 1 short film program in this year’s Festival, which include films and insights from Indigenous artists across the globe. As core to our mission, this annual program has centered the works and experiences of Indigenous filmmakers for two decades.
 


SIFF 2024 cINeDIGENOUS Program Highlights
Bring Them Home (USA/Canada 2024 , 85 min., d: Ivan MacDonald (Blackfeet), Ivy MacDonald (Blackfeet), Daniel Glick)
Molokaʻi Bound (USA 2024,  112 min., d: Alika Tengan (Kanaka Maoli)) - World Premiere
Moving Poetry: Indigenous Stories (Short Film Program, 69 min.)
Standing Above The Clouds (USA 2024, 83 min., d: Jalena Keane-Lee) - World Premiere 
Sugarcane (USA/Canada 2024,  107 min., d: Julian Brave NoiseCat (Secwepemc Nation), Emily Kassie)
The Tundra Within Me (Norway 2023, 95 min., d: Sara Margrethe Oskal (Sámi))
 


4th World Media Lab 2024 Fellows
Victoria Cheyenne - Aymara, El Alto Bolivia / Tsétsêhéstâhese, Northern Cheyenne | Montana
Keisha Erwin - Woodland Cree, Lac La Ronge Indian Band | Saskatchewan
Cass Gardiner - Anishinaabe Algonquin, Kebaowek First Nation | New Jersey
Nicolle L. Gonzales (Arthun) - Diné, Navajo Nation | New Mexico
Bruce Thomas Miller - Anishinaabe, Matachewan First Nation | Alberta
Sisa Quispe - Quechua Aymara | New York
 

The 50th Seattle International Film Festival screens in theaters acros

Interview: Lucy Winer and Paula De Koenigsberg, the Directors of “Rate It X”

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[Editor’s Note: This interview is part of a larger feature about the women documentary filmmakers who blazed trails for the craft by premiering their films at the Sundance Film Festival in the 1980s. Please read the main introduction to this feature here.]

By Bedatri Choudhury

You are currently restoring the film but tell me what made you want to make it, back then?

PDK: When I was in art school, I remember a teacher took me aside and he said, ‘You have talent, but you really need to marry, stay home, and raise children.’ This was in 1972. And I was so shocked. Here he’s teaching at Pratt Institute, and you have men and women working together. We were looking at the women’s movement, and here was this very blatant expression of sexism. One of our producers, who has since passed away, Lynne Campbell founded Women Against Pornography in in Manhattan. Lucy and I, and a bunch of women were able to go through 42nd Street, and visit the sex shops. While women’s voices were censored, we saw pornography and these expressions of exploitation. We believe in First Amendment rights, but you don’t want to be surrounded by these images and this kind of abuse. And so we realized we wanted to find out the roots of sexism, and other forms of oppression, racism, and exploitation of women. We wanted to cover the ground and show that there’s a continuum. What is being said in sexist images of women in advertising, in pornography, is perpetrating violence against women in real life. 

LW: There was so much hurt and anger in a moment like that. We were raised with lip service being given to ‘you can do anything, and the sexes are equal.’ And that as a woman artist, you have every opportunity that a male artist does. That was absolutely not the case. That was a really rude awakening.

We went around and interviewed men who produced images that we thought were sexist. And asked them what they’re doing, and why they’re doing it. And the answers were not surprising, except in their honesty. As Paula pointed out, the values that informed the mainstream advertising, and the men who put that advertising out in the world, were the same values that we found in the pornography shops. Same values expressed in a more extreme way.

That must have been a hard film to make?

PDK: In some ways, it was kind of easy as well. We bought a 60 millimeter camera with another woman, and we shared it around. It got a lot of use. It was sort of like guerilla filmmaking; we just went out there with our lights, extension cords, and an old secondhand Nagra tape recorder. 

This is all to say, with very little money, we had great freedom. We rented a Steenbeck editor, and Lucy edited the film. Then we got some money from British television, $30,000 or $40,000. Which meant we could actually buy the Steenbeck and put it in Lucy’s living room.

Lucy Winer and Paula de Koenigsberg while filming "Rate It X." Photo courtesy of Paula de Koenigsberg.

What would you say has gotten easier down the years?

LW: Technically, the thing that has made the biggest difference in terms of the making of the film is nonlinear editing. I am sentimental about cuttin

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