The Burning Ones

The Burning Ones

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Mixed 89 minutes | 7pm, Thursday 8 March

Too full of pathos and too ingenuous to be prurient. – Susan Sontag on Flaming Creatures

Presented as a partnership between Queensland Film Festival, Brisbane Queer Film Film Festival, the National Film and Sound Archive, and the Institute of Modern Art, this free screening, The Burning Ones, of queer experimental classics bends towards psycho-sexual liberation.

Un Chant D’amour | Jean Genet 1950 | 26 minutes
Set in a prison wing housing convicted murderers in solitary confinement, the action shifts from individual cells to the minds of the prisoners and the guard-voyeur together with symbolic images such as the final garland of flowers. There is a framework of narrative in the depiction of the prison and the prisoner’s sexual misery and fantasies of homosexuality but there is no insistence on it.

Swain | Gregory Markopoulous 1950 | 20 minutes
An evocation of a subconscious rejection of the stereotyped masculine role. In a flight of fantasy, the isolated protagonist moves on a trance like journey of poetic action toward a climactic scene of self-realization.

Flaming Creatures | Jack Smith 1963 | 43 minutes
The films of Hollywood Z movie queen Maria Montez, and Josef von Sternberg with Dietrich, were points of departure for this dream-like evocation of a mythological Hollywood, ‘a comedy set in a haunted Hollywood studio’ as Smith described it. Flaming Creatures is comprised of ten scenes of uncertain polymorphous perverse sex accompanied by nostalgic and repetitive music were filmed on often murky and over-exposed film stock, minimally edited with deliberately obscured boundaries between the scenes—a key work of the American avant garde and queer cinema.

Rare 16mm prints courtesy of the NFSA
Unrated 18 + (contains graphic nudity)

Introduced by Mark Cutler
Mark Cutler is a PhD candidate from the School of Historical and Philosophical Inquiry at the University of Queensland, as well as a contributor to the Queensland School of Continental Philosophy. His research interests include film theory, art and non-narrative cinema, and how we make sense of the world through our bodies.

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