Fri, Aug 06 | Brattleboro

ALWAYS FOR PLEASURE! The Films of Les Blank

An inimitable ethnographer of offbeat Americana, the late Les Blank (1935-2013) chronicled the music, food and rituals of regional micro-cultures. From odes to garlic and gap-toothed women, to intimate portraits of blues and folk music legends, Blank’s films are joyous celebrations of humanity!
Registration is Closed
ALWAYS FOR PLEASURE! The Films of Les Blank

Time & Location

Aug 06, 8:00 PM – 11:00 PM
Brattleboro, 190 Main St, Brattleboro, VT 05301, USA

About the Event

Every Friday this Summer, Epsilon Spires transforms the parking lot into an outdoor cinema!

Picture a picnic under the stars with your friends where you are entertained by innovative films projected on the big screen. Our programming celebrates cinema past and present, both popular and experimental, highlighting diverse creative voices from around the world. Space is limited and advanced booking encouraged!

After Our Opening Exhibition of Erika Somogyi: Luminous Bloom during Gallery Walk, The Backlot Cinema will host a screening of  the films: ALWAYS FOR PLEASURE! and HOT PEPPER! by acclaimed documentary filmmaker, Les Blank. For multisensorial delight this event will feature Cajun/Creole catering by Lion's Tooth Holistic Living!

An uncompromisingly independent filmmaker, Les Blank made documentaries for nearly fifty years, elegantly disappearing with his camera into cultural spots rarely seen on-screen—mostly on the peripheries of the United States, but also occasionally abroad. Seemingly off-the-cuff yet poetically constructed, these films are humane, sometimes wry, always engaging tributes to music, food, and all sorts of regionally specific ecstasies and communal enjoyments.

<<<<TONIGHT'S PROGRAM>>>> 

Hot Pepper! (1973 • 54 minutes) A thrilling musical portrait of Grammy-winning Zydeco King, Clifton Chenier, who combines the pulsating rhythms of Cajun dance music, African overtones, and bluesy R&B into an irresistible melange mixed up in the sweaty juke joints of South Louisiana. Trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GtffLy6JYWo

Always for Pleasure! (1978 • 57 minutes) Les Blank’s raucous tribute to the spirit and social traditions of New Orleans, is perhaps his most sustained representation of pure joy. An intense insider’s portrait of street celebrations and the unique cultural gumbo of Second-line parades, Mardi Gras, and the Jazz Fest. This glorious, soul-satisfying film is among Blank’s special masterworks and features live music by Professor Longhair, The Wild Tchoupitoulas, the Neville Brothers, Allen Toussaint, Kid Thomas Valentine and more. 

Trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-1Plmw36D-E

"Restless with curiosity, Blank’s ethnographic wanderlust found the filmmaker exploring myriad sidelined cultures, a premiere documentarian of American life, a transient-like figure who traveled the entire nation in search of the lost, forgotten voices who made this country beautiful and unique. Perhaps as eccentric as his subjects— his films seek out to celebrate the various pleasures of life through music, food, and art, with a clear love and admiration for people living authentic lives."- Indiewire

Layout & Tickets: *Entry Includes Raffle Ticket for Gift Certificates to Local Businesses!

We encourage our guests to come as if to a picnic – so bring your own blankets, cushions or folding chairs to sit – you want to be comfortable so bring all the coziness you need! Bar and local food vendors on site. Restrooms provided.

In the case of rain the event will be moved into our Sanctuary, which will have socially distanced seating and co-vid precautions in place.

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  • Admission to Backlot Cinema!
    $10
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