Below is a list of significant events and films in underground film history between the years 1970 and 1979. Reference key of sources appears at the bottom of the page.
Expanded Cinema, a book that collects the columns of the same name written by Gene Youngblood and published in the Los Angeles Free Press, is published.
In the Spring, Film Culture publishes a double-issue, 48-49.
Malcolm Le Grice
Spot the Microdot, Or How to Screw the CIA Part 1
William and Birgit Hein
Work in Progress Teil A (1969-70) (Six parts: Takes, Catania, untitled, untitled, The Jewellery Robbery, untitled)
Kodak Ghost Poems
Runs Good (1969-70)
Surfacing on the Thames
Gregory Markopoulos publishes his collective writings, Chaos Phaos, but doesn’t include anything written before 1962.
In the Spring, Film Culture publishes issue 52.
From the Notebook of…
July ’71 in San Francisco, Living at Beach Street, Working at Canyon Cinema, Swimming in the Valley of the Moon
The Central Region
Peter Kubelka gives a seminar of his films at New York University, which is “the first public and extensive expression of his theoretical position.”
October 4: Peter Kubelka screens his films and participates in a discussion about his work at the San Francisco Cinematheque. A transcript of that discussion is eventually published in Canyon Cinema’s Canyon Cinemanews magazine.
Kodak begins producing syncsound Super-8 film.
Rameau’s Nephew by Diderot (Thanx to Dennis Young) by Wilma Schoen
In the autumn, Will Hindle is seriously injured in a car accident in Alabama. By July 1976 he is almost fully recovered.
May 25: The Whitney Museum screens Warren Sonbert’s Rude Awakening.
June 12: James Benning and Bette Gordon screen films at the Millennium Film Workshop.
11 x 14
New Improved Institutional Quality: In the Environment of Liquids and Nasals a Parasitic Vowel Sometimes Develops
Wide Angle Saxon
Neptunian Space Angel
One Way Boogie Woogie
The Itch Scratch Cycle
May 18: George Landow introduces his films at a retrospective of his work at the San Francisco Cinematheque.
July 23: James Broughton “re-marries” Joel Singer. (Quotes used in original announcement in Canyon Cinema’s Cinemanews magazine.)
Eric Mitchell opens fifty-seat New Cinema storefront microcinema on St. Marks Place in NYC.
Boris Deutsch passes away. (b. 1892)
Beth and Scott B
Letters to Dad
Incontinence: A Diarrhetic Flow of Mismatches
O.P. Screen screens Nick Zedd‘s They Eat Scum. Amy Taubin, film critic for the Soho Weekly News, sees the film and writes in the paper: “The aesthetic operative here is transgression, both in terms of the narrative, and in formal filmmaking terms.”
Robert Florey passes away.
Beth and Scott B
European Diary ’79
D.C: David Curtis. Experimental Cinema. New York: Dell Pub., 1978.
D.E.J.: David E. James. The Most Typical Avant-garde: History and Geography of Minor Cinemas in Los Angeles. Berkeley: University of California, 2005.
J.S.: Jack Sargeant. Deathtripping: the Extreme Underground. Brooklyn: Soft Skull, 2008. (Originally published: London: Creation, 1995.)
P.A.S.: P. Adams Sitney. Visionary Film: the American Avant-garde, 1943-2000. New York: Oxford UP, 2002.
S.M.: Scott MacDonald. Canyon Cinema: the Life and times of an Independent Film Distributor. Berkeley: University of California, 2008.