An army of gay/nazi bikers make their engines roar and ride the way to pain/pleasure as sexual and sadistic symbols are intercut into the dazing chaos and rhythmic experiences of this ...
See full summary »
A woman dressed elegantly walks purposely through the water gardens at the Villa d'Este in Tivoli, as the music of Vivaldi's "Winter" movement of "The Four Seasons" plays. Heavy red filters... See full summary »
A Slavonic Mass by Leos Janácek plays as historical figures, biblical characters, and mythical creatures gather in the pleasure dome. Aphrodite, Lilith, Isis, Kali, Astarte, Nero, Pan, and ... See full summary »
Samson De Brier,
Pierrot waxes romantic, entranced by the moon. Harlequin appears and bullies him, then uses a magic lantern to project an image of Columbine. Pierrot tries to court the illusory Columbine ... See full summary »
A soundtrack plays folk rock as a woman prepares, at noon, to take her Borzois for a walk. She goes through her dresses, all 1920's style flapper gowns, holding them one at a time, shaking ... See full summary »
From a murky landscape, a wooded mountain emerges. We watch the sun. We see a bearded man climbing up the mountain through the snow. He carries an ax, and he's accompanied by a dog. His ... See full summary »
An army of gay/nazi bikers make their engines roar and ride the way to pain/pleasure as sexual and sadistic symbols are intercut into the dazing chaos and rhythmic experiences of this underground film by cult director Anger. Written by
The party in the "Party Lights" sequence was actually the annual all-night Halloween party of the motorcycle club he was following, held in a Brooklyn garage. Kenneth Anger's contribution was four kegs of beer for the revelers. According to him, he staged nothing, but just brought in some lights and "filmed it like a documentary." Although the party looks completely all-male and gay, in fact all of the bikers were heterosexual and had girlfriends, who were present at the party but whom the young men did not want to have filmed. So all of the young women stood behind the movie camera, watching and giggling as their boyfriends carried on, pretended to be homosexuals, and in one or two cases wore drag clothes (i.e., dressed as women). Kenneth Anger has never been sure how much of the rowdy homo-erotic horseplay he caught on his film was natural joking around and how much was the result of him being there with his camera. See more »
What is significant about this text is that Anger got many of the shots from the initiation rites of American biker gangs. As such, the butch ruggedness of these ostensibly "straight" men is conflated with the none-too-subtle homoeroticism of their rites--which leads the viewer to question the rigid dichotomies of "straight" and "gay" that dominate North American social discourse.
Also of significance is the extent to which, by appropriating "butch markers" such as leather and motorcycles, the homoeroticism undermines the stereotypicality of the "nelly" homosexual male.
Not a terribly accessible text, but it becomes pregnant with significance for the viewer who does a little background reading first.
17 of 23 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?