Underground Film Journal

Underground Notes


Anthology Film Archives: The First Screenings, 1970
After years of planning, the Anthology Film Archives first opened its doors in New York City towards the end of 1970. That opening came with great interest and fascination of how the world’s first “museum of film” was going to operate like no other theater before it. Articles on the Anthology’s grand opening ran in
Canyon Cinema Cooperative: Catalogue Number One
In December 1966, the Canyon Cinema Cooperative in San Francisco, California published their first Catalogue of experimental and avant-garde films to rent. This was four years after the Film-Makers’ Cooperative had begun distributing underground films in New York City. Canyon first listed films to rent in the November ’66 edition of their News newsletter, then
Canyon Cinema Cooperative: Catalogue No. 2, Supplement No. 1
In 1966, after six years of existence, the Canyon Cinema experimental film collective of San Francisco, California started its own cooperative distribution center, first listing films in the November ’66 issue of their News newsletter, in which they stated that they would be following in the footsteps of New York City’s Film-Makers’ Cooperative that had
Film-Makers’ Cooperative: The First Films
In a letter dated June 1, 1962, the newly formed Film-Makers’ Cooperative offered their first list of films that were available to rent. Fourteen filmmakers were represented. The need to form a cooperative distribution center for what were then called “independent filmmakers” was made in a series of meetings in the autumn of 1960. The
Idiolects #2 (August to November 1976)
This is an article about the second issue of the avant-garde arts zine Idiolects. An article on the first issue can be read here. For a small publication with no advertising to support it, publishing on a quarterly basis was an ambitious and impressive achievement for Idiolects. This second issue covers avant-garde happenings in New
Idiolects #1 (June to August 1976)
In 1976, a crudely published fanzine devoted to the experimental film scene made its debut. It was called Idiolects and the first issue offered a definition of its name: “An idiolect is the language of an individual at a particular time.” That definition certainly could be applied to both the filmmakers covered in the zine
Kenneth Anger: 1966 Screening Of His “Magick Lantern Cycle”
The Magic Lantern is a device that dates back to the 1600s — and possibly the 1400s — and was used to project static images. According to the modern day Magic Lantern Society, Danish mathematician Thomas Rasmussen Walgensten was the first person to use the term “Laterna Magica” in the mid-1600s to describe his image
Flashback: 1994 New York Underground Film Festival
In 1993, after not being accepted into any major film festival of the time, such as Sundance, filmmaker Todd Phillips personally toured the U.S. and Europe with his first documentary film, Hated: GG Allin & The Murder Junkies. Following this experience, Phillips partnered up with fellow filmmaker Andrew Gurland to launch several initiatives to help
Robert Beck Memorial Cinema: 1998 Screenings
This is Part Two in a series of articles on the Robert Beck Memorial Cinema (RBMC). As detailed in Part One, the RBMC was an experimental film screening series in New York City, started by filmmaker Brian L. Frye. Frye programmed the first screening on May 12, 1998 at the Collective Unconscious theater space. The