Discussion with the filmmakers
The Museum of Modern Art, Floor T2, Theater 2
*Takako vs. Nine Lives*. 2018. USA. Directed by Lauren Wolkstein. Courtesy Jen Schneider

Join us for “Marlon said to me: ‘Maria, don’t worry, it’s just a movie,’” the world-premiere of a feature-length new episode of the secret TV show The Eyeslicer. This episode (guest curated by the filmmakers Kelly Sears, Jennifer Reeder, and Lauren Wolkstein) investigates the female body through tropes and traps of cinematic production, growing out of historical and recent conversations about assault in the filmmaking industry. The flow of these films slowly shifts between examinations of dominance and violence, instigated and replicated by industrial film production culture, and reframes the gaze, the framing of the body, and representations of desire through resistance and the reclamation of film language.

Program approx. 56 min.

How to Bake a Pie. 2019. USA. Animated by Kelly Gallagher

Program introduction and interstitials by animator Kelly Gallagher. Melting, slicing, mixing, scorching. We don't want a slice of the pie, we want the whole thing.

Applied Pressure. 2018. USA. Directed by Kelly Sears. 6 min.

Ease the pain from past physical and mental distress. The body remembers. Aches may linger. Lie prone, breathe deeply, release tension. Instructional massage images sourced from dozens of bodywork books are altered, reordered, and overlaid to shift the emphasis from the actions on the body to reception of the touch. The tone of the animation changes from one of relaxation and healing to the dissociative and traumatic, reflecting on conversations from this past year surrounding bodies, massage, and assault.

Before the Portrait. 2012. USA. Directed by Karissa Hahn. 2 min.

Before the Portrait is a reenactment of the fictional musings of John William Waterhouse, in response to his painting A Mermaid. The film acts as a portrayal of an immobile creature who has been idealized with images of femininity.

American Reflexxx. 2015. USA. Directed by Alli Coates. 14 min.

American Reflexxx is an experimental documentary by filmmaker Alli Coates and artist Signe Pierce. On August 13, 2013, the pair ventured to the Myrtle Beach boardwalk, Pierce scantily clad and wearing a reflective mirrored mask, and Coates armed with a camera. The duo knew it would be a visually interesting experiment, but they never expected bloodshed. Over the course of an hour, as Pierce sauntered down the street, the performance quickly gained a crowd, which turned to street harassment, and escalated to an angry mob lashing out in a violent assault. This chilling film is a study of mob mentality, violence, and the hostility surrounding gender ambiguity in American culture. It has been screened in over 30 countries, and has attained a cult following thanks in part to its viral success on YouTube and an appearance on Fox News.

I Dream You Dream of Me. 2018. USA. Directed by Jennifer Reeder. 10 min.

A lone woman (Angelica Ross) marks her trail and sheds some excess baggage along the way. Reeder’s feminist horror fever dream offers a fresh take on the modern Western.

(rough cut). 2016. USA. Directed by Walter Woodman. 3 min.

A director pressures an actress into full nudity on the morning of her first sex scene.

Growing Girl. 2017. USA. Directed by Marnie Ellen Hertzler. 11 min.

A PowerPoint presentation about snakes and all of the things I wish I would have done.

Takako vs. Nine Lives. 2018. USA. Directed by Lauren Wolkstein. 9 min.

This short experimental dance for screen tells a story using language that juxtaposes classical ballet and masked professional wrestling in the lucha libre style.

Pryings (2014/1971). 2014. USA. Directed by Nishat Hossain. 7 min.

Drawing from Vito Acconci’s work Pryings, this two-part performance explores intimacy, trust, and violence.

Perils. 1986. USA. Directed by Abigail Child. 5 min.

This homage to silent film—the clash of ambiguous innocence and unsophisticated villainy—dramatizes the theatrical postures of melodrama to reconstruct our ideas of romance, action, and drama. Director Abigal Child says, "I had long conceived of a film composed only of reaction shots in which all causality was erased. What would be left would be the resonant voluptuous suggestions of history and the human face."

Mahogany Too. 2018. USA. Directed by Akosua Adoma Owusu. Super 8 to Digital. 3 min.

Inspired by Nollywood’s distinct reimaginings that take the form of unauthorized sequels, Mahogany Too interprets the 1975 cult classic Mahogany, a fashion-infused romantic drama. Starring Nigerian actress Esosa E., Mahogany Too examines and revives Diana Ross’s iconic portrayal of Tracy Chambers, a determined, energetic African American woman enduring racial injustice while pursuing her dreams. Mahogany Too uses analog film to achieve its vintage tone and emphasize the essence of the character, re-creating Tracy’s qualities through fashion, modeling, and styling.

This film accompanies The Future of Film Is Female, Part 2.