Short film utilizing quick cuts and multiple angles of a one-man-band musical performance by Sid Lavarents (who served as both film-maker and musician). Added to the National Film Registry,... See full summary »
A smoker falls asleep, and two mischievious fairies play with his pipe. He discovers this, and imprisons them in a cigar box. He removes a flower from the box, which contains a fairy ... See full summary »
This animated short features two soundtracks - in one, Frank narrates an autobiography,in the other, he reads off a list of words beginning with the letter "f." Tying the two soundtracks ... See full summary »
Moe discovers Curly's unknown boxing talent when he knocks out the Champ at a restaurant when Larry plays "Pop Goes the Weasal" on the violin. Moe becomes Curly's manager, and they win ... See full summary »
Inspired by a lesson from Erik Satie; a film in the form of a street - Castro Street running by the Standard Oil Refinery in Richmond, California ... switch engines on one side and refinery... See full summary »
A grinning monkey sitting in a tree dangles a lit firecracker from a fishing pole just over the head of an unwary turtle. Realizing that an explosion is pending, the turtle ducks and takes ... See full summary »
Leo M. Langlois III,
Ray J. Mauer,
Silly politics but great footage and a fascinating style
"Cry of Jazz" has silly politics but great footage and a fascinating style. This experimental short is one of the first examples of radical black film-making that would become popular later on with Charles Burnett and later Spike Lee. The short claims that jazz music can only be ably made by Blacks because of their suffering and any jazz from Whites is a pale imitation. While the Blacks did invent Jazz, its a form of musical composition that can just as ably be done by White people.
That being said, I was never one to let a films politics or social message interfere with my appreciation of its style. This is one well-made short that is fascinating throughout. The style is very minimalist and avant-garde but accessible all the same. The editing is fine and the sequencing is great. Plus, it has rare footage of the great Sun Ra. This is before he became really out there but fans such as myself will still find it delightful. "Cry of Jazz" is a must-see for fans of Jazz or experimental cinema. (8/10)
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