In the Court of the Crimson King: King Crimson at 50

Director Toby Amies IN PERSON in conversation with film restorationist & curator Peter Conheim after the Sat, 11/4 show! 

“Like an episode of The Office, but with huge drum kits… utterly enthralling. Somehow it ends being about a lot more than King Crimson.” – The Guardian.

Co-Presented by Amoeba Music!

King Crimson is a band that people literally are dying to be in. In the Court of the Crimson King is a dark, comic film for anyone who wonders whether it is worth sacrificing everything for just a single moment of transcendence. For over 50 years Robert Fripp, also famous for his work with Bowie and Eno, has overseen a unique creative environment in which freedom and responsibility conspire to place extraordinary demands on the band’s members – only alleviated by the applause of an audience whose adoration threatens to make their lives even harder. It’s a rewarding and perilous space in which the extraordinary is possible, nothing is certain, and not everyone survives intact.

“By turns comical and melancholy, it may be the most revealing film about working life in a band since Spinal Tap.” The Telegraph

About our moderator:
Peter Conheim is a freelance film and media restorationist living in the San Francisco Bay Area. He’s overseen the rescue of such notable films as SPRING NIGHT SUMMER NIGHT (1968) and NIGHT TIDE (1963), as well as many Mexican “genre” films, such as VICTIMS OF SIN (playing at the Roxie 12/16) and THE BATWOMAN, in partnership with Permanencia Voluntaria.

About the filmmaker:
Toby Amies is interested in exploring extraordinary points of view.

He was born, like Heavy Metal, in Birmingham, UK, and grew up in the English countryside. His first job was driving a tractor and since then he has worked widely as a director, photographer, and broadcaster. His filmmaking grew out of his work as a host and reporter in television and Radio.

He attended Art School in Cheltenham, University in Exeter, UK and was an award-winning scholar at the University of Kansas, US. At Art School he learnt to DJ and has been playing records for dancing ever since. He worked for MTV Europe in the 90’s as a presenter and director and launched MTV US’s live programming which became TRL. He still feels guilty about that. Following MTV he made travel and film programmes internationally, and began to move behind the camera, first as a portrait photographer, and ultimately as a director and cinematographer.

Toby decided to focus on movies after winning, with Darry Logan, the Dali Award at the 1999 Surrealist Film Festival; and has now developed a very personal style of documentary that records his relationships with his subjects, allowing the audience to share in an unusual degree of intimacy and immediacy on screen. As well as his feature documentaries he’s made short films for institutions and brands including the BBC, Nowness, Christies and Chanel. Robert Fripp commissioned In the Court of the Crimson King after seeing Toby’s first feature documentary The Man Whose Mind Exploded, which had a cinema run in the UK with Picture House, was broadcast on Film4 in the UK, and Netflix in the US. Both feature films have 100% ratings on Rotten Tomatoes. In the Court of the Crimson King has played festivals worldwide and has had an extraordinarily positive press and audience response.

Toby lives on the South Coast of England and is currently developing a found-footage horror film that uses his expertise in the documentary space as the foundation for a terrifying audience experience. He loves cats, tomatoes, and cacti.

1h 26m
Toby Amies
First Showing
November 4, 2023