On Thursday, October 20, the Exploratorium in San Francisco presents “Seasons of Unrest: Activist Filmmaking in the Vietnam Era,” an evening of films that explore the divided and fractious state of the union during the late 1960s and onward. All six films were preserved through National Film Preservation Foundation grants by archives across the country and will be presented via sparkling new 16mm prints. Despite the passage of four decades, these works remain compellingly relevant. The roster includes:
- The Jungle (1967), a vivid portrayal of Philadelphia street life starring and made by African American gang members, named to the National Film Registry in 2009. Preserved by UCLA Film & Television Archive.
- Young Braves (1968), a student-produced ethnographic study and a celebration of a group of Puerto Rican teens in New York. Preserved by the New York Public Library.
- Videotape Study No. 3 (1966–69), Jud Yalkut and Nam June Paik’s filmed manipulation of news footage of President Johnson and New York City Mayor John Lindsay. Preserved by Anthology Film Archives.
- Butterfly (1967), a rarely-screened abstract protestation of the Vietnam war by Shirley Clarke and her daughter Wendy Preserved by the Wisconsin Center for Film and Theater Research.
- Urban Crisis and the New Militants: Law and Order vs. Dissent (1969), one of four films by the Film Group examining the demonstrations at the 1968 Democratic National Convention and the Chicago police’s response. Preserved by Chicago Film Archives.
- Whitesburg Epic (1971), profile of the citizens of Whitesburg, Kentucky and their political attitudes, made by local high school students. Preserved by Appalshop.
Please visit the Exploratorium’s website for details on when and how to attend.