"Imagine if Fellini had lived in a trailer in Arkansas instead of Rome."

The above quote is from the London Times writing about Phil Chambliss. Chambliss is America's first folk-art filmmaker. He's lived his entire life in Calhoun County, Arkansas. He never went to film school or college, never took a class or read a book on filmmaking. The films he managed to see - Sergio Leone's For a Few Dollars More, the entire Peyton Place television special, and a particular episode of The Rifleman in which Lee Van Cleef plays Johnny Drago - led him to take the 95 bucks his then-wife had saved for a new icebox, and spend it instead on a movie camera. With camera in tow, he wrangled some friends into acting, and went on to create a body of work that includes dozens of bizarre, brilliant, idiosyncratic films, shot over the course of several decades. Phil's films are a revelation, full of unexpected humor, complex social commentary, and a strong, almost suspended, sense of time and place. The first Los Angeles presentation of his singular work is tomorrow night, at The Silent Movie Theatre with Chambliss in attendance.
Not the sort of thing that comes through town often, so the adventurous among you shouldn't miss it.

posted by sammy at 4:29 PM