Just Announced: AFS January and February Programming


As everyone who reads this must surely know by now, the AFS Cinema is closed for expansion and renovations through the end of 2016 and into the first few months of 2017. During this time there will be a number of off-site events, open to both AFS members and non-members. You can sign up for these events and find out more at austinfilm.org.

Sunday, January 8: AFS and AGLIFF present DON'T CALL ME SON at the Texas Spirit Theater (located in the Bullock Texas State History Museum. This is the new one from Brazilian writer/director Anna Muylaert, whose film THE SECOND MOTHER thrilled Austin Audiences last year. It's a family drama about a gender-adventurous young man, still in his teens, who finds out that his family is not what it seems, and must adjust to a radical change in fortunes.

Monday, January 9: SAVAGE GOLD will return to the screening room at Austin Studios. This celebration of hysterical video oddities, introduced and selected by AFS Lead Programmer Lars Nilsen and his fellow collector Maximillian Meehan, is always a wild, fun festival of discovery, complete with a junk-food potluck.

Thursday, January 12: AFS Artistic Director Richard Linklater will be joined by author Eric Schlosser (Fast Food Nation, Food, Inc.) for COMMAND & CONTROL, the new documentary based on Schlosser's book of the same name. The film takes viewers into the harrowing nightmare of a 1980 nuclear disaster in an Arkansas that nearly bloomed into an out-and-out extinction incident. This screening takes place at the Texas Spirit Theater.

Sunday, January 15: Robert Greene, one of the most interesting voices in film today, joins us for a screening of his new "non-fiction thriller" KATE PLAYS CHRISTINE, in which actress Kate Lyn Sheil prepares to play the role of newscaster Christine Chubbock, who committed suicide on-air in 1974. The previous day, the International Documentary Association and AFS welcome Greene to the Screening Room at Austin Studios for a Master Class.

Thursday, January 19: AFS Presents a 50th Anniversary Screening of DON'T LOOK BACK at the Paramount Theater guest hosted by Austin Chronicle Music Editor Raoul Hernandez. D.A. Pennebaker's doc follows the volcanically creative and playful young Bob Dylan on his first tour of England. Dylan, who represents the razor edge of an all-new kind of consciousness, seems to be a time-traveller, a modern explorer in a long-ago world of booking agents, reporters and other assorted Mr. Joneses.

Monday, January 30: AQUARIUS, the astonishing new film from NEIGHBORING SOUNDS writer/director Kleber Mendonça Filho, plays at the Texas Spirit Theater. Boasting a phenomenal performance by Sonia Braga as the last tenant of an apartment building that is scheduled to be razed, this is a film that will be remembered for many years.

Thursday, February 2: AFS Artistic Director Richard Linklater presents Bernardo Bertolucci's THE LAST EMPEROR at the Paramount Theater. Winner of an astonishing nine Academy Awards, as well as a clean sweep of the Golden Globes, this is an Epic in the truest sense of the word. Linklater, a big fan of the film, will give one of his highly-informative and perceptive introductions before the film.

Sunday, February 5: Science On Screen returns to the Spirit Of Texas Theater with the documentary film DINOSAUR 13, about a Tyrannosaurus fossil discovery in South Dakota that must surely qualify as one of the most fraught and complicated such maneuver in paleontological history. We will be joined for a discussion period about the finer points of paleontology and excavation by one of UT's key dinosaur researchers, Julia Clarke, Ph.D.

Monday, February 6: Writer/director David Zellner, who, with his brother and collaborator Nathan Zellner, makes such extraordinary films as KUMIKO, THE TREASURE HUNTER and KID-THING, harbors a dark secret. He loves the '80s Canadian show THE LITTLEST HOBO, in which a German Shepherd dog wanders from town to town like Michael Landon in HIGHWAY TO HEAVEN, solving problems and showing people the true way. He will join us to introduce a pair of episodes of the show and talk about their narrative construction. This show takes place at Austin Public and is free to the public.

Wednesday, February 8: The new doc from Raoul Peck, I AM NOT YOUR NEGRO, screens at the Alamo Drafthouse Ritz. Using the words of James Baldwin, from his unfinished manuscript No Name On The Street, Peck constructs a history of the Civil Rights era, through the eyes of one of its most active soldiers and intellectuals. Magnificently detailed and meticulously structured, this is a testament to Baldwin and his generation.

Monday, February 13: AFS presents the new restoration of Gillo Pontecorvo's astonishing and impactful 1966 film THE BATTLE OF ALGIERS at the Alamo Ritz. The film depicts, in cinema-verite style, the uprising of the Algerian people against their French colonial occupiers. Not only a great work of cinema, but a document of real historical importance, used by both the Black Panther Party and military academies as a training tool.

Sunday, February 19 and Sunday, February 26: AFS presents a pair of programs of so-called "race films" at the Spirit Of Texas Theater. For several decades, between the twenties and the fifties, a "shadow" film industry existed to provide all-black cast films for segregated theaters in America. The films, which were made with the lowest of budgets, are fascinating to see today, and give us an idea, when we read between the lines, of what popular black culture was like at the time. On February 19, the program includes the western THE BRONZE BUCKAROO and on February 26, the film BLOOD OF JESUS, wildly surreal in its unconventional effects, screens with selected shorts.