Current & Upcoming Films
AN EVENING with SACRED BONES featuring ERASERHEAD
Mysterious Brooklyn-imprint Sacred Bones Records will materialize on 16th St for an evening of music videos, short films, works-in-progress and a special 35mm screening of ERASERHEAD! Featured artists include Blank Dogs, Crystal Stilts, Zola Jesus and Gary War! Doors at 7pm, Sacred Bones videos at 7:30pm, drinks and DJ Omar at 8:30pm, and then THE GRANDMOTHER and ERASERHEAD at 9:30pm!
ERASERHEAD had it's San Francisco premiere at the Roxie back in the winter of 1977, so it's coming home!
Here's what our Winter '77 calendar said:
ERASERHEAD, a new nightmarish film by David Lynch, is stirring the dark regions of the psyche for audiences in a way no movie has since NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD. At its first public screening last spring at Filmex in Los Angeles, ERASERHEAD stunned the packed crowd who had bought up tickets weeks in advance.
Midnight audiences in New York have never seen anything like it, according to Soho Weekly News, where the film has been playing for over three months.
ERASERHEAD will premiere in the Bay Area at the Roxie, Jan. 6 and 7 at midnight. It will continue to play at midnight on Friday and Saturdays. It is not recommended for the faint of heart.
ERASERHEAD is a bad dream. Everything about it is awkward and repulsive - beautifully repulsive. The Bosch-like images are nightmare perfect.
Outwardly the film is the simple story of an innocent young man (Henry) who has a fetish for insects and filth. He lives in a modest one-room apartment with his filthy fetishes and infernal radiator - a meager existence by any standard.
Henry's simple life takes a turn when, after a most upsetting family dinner, he's forced into marriage by the parents of his pregnant girlfriend. Henry, wife, and baby (one of screen's strangest child stars) move in together. However, Henry's wife soon finds the domestic strains too much and leaves Henry and Baby.
Henry is untrained for parenthood and Junior becomes increasingly upset with his father. Perhaps it is Henry's immoral acts with the voluptuous brunette across the hall and his obsessive fantasy about fat-cheeked women which upsets the youngster so.
It is the manner in which Henry resolves his conflict with his offspring which shocks audiences most, even more than his filthy fetishes.
David Lynch, the director, is a surrealistic painter. The black-and-white tone of the movie is evocative of early Polish and silent German films. It has that dark, moody throughout. Contributing to this, no doubt, is the fact that ERASERHEAD was filmed entirely at night in Los Angeles, which is scary enough by itself. most of the shooting took place on sets built in an attic of a mansion in Beverly Hills.
The cast was recruited from Hollywood's back, back lots. John Nance, who plays Henry, has appeared in AIP quickies. Henry's wife is Charlotte Steward who can be seen on television on Little House On the Prairie. Her mother is Jeanne Bates, a veteran of numerous B-films for Columbia Pictures who is now working in soap operas.
Lynch thinks of his fim as "A dream of dark and troubling things."
"Everybody has a subconscious and they put a lid on it," he said. "There are things in there that we try to avoid. When something touches them, it frightens us, although inside we're grateful."
His wife Mary puts it more bluntly. She said,"There's a real live little Eraserhead in everybody."
35mm print of ERASERHEAD courtesy of the director! Showing with Lynch's early short THE GRANDMOTHER (digital)!