Screen scene: Local film news

VH YES: Roving artist and makeshift film scholar Bill Daniel will screen works from these and other VHS tapes on May 26 for the program “SFVHS: California artists' video 1988-1999." Photo by Daniel

Mechanical Eye Microcinema presents SFVHS: California artists’ video 1988-1999 in The Refinery Creator Space on Thursday, May 26, at 7 p.m. The 80-minute program spans a range of forms from agit prop, pranks, activist documentation, video art and anti-capitalist intervention. The films are curated by roving artist and makeshift film scholar Bill Daniel, and presented on the original VHS tapes. $5 suggested donation, but no one will be turned away due to lack of funds.

During the featured 11-year period, Daniel was a member of San Francisco’s Mission District collective Artists’ Television Access on Valencia Street, where these works debuted. “The gallery is still there, and over the last 30 years, many artists got started there,” Daniel says. “It was a wonderful community, now mostly decimated by the tech and global capital economy that has flushed working people out of the city, although the gallery has managed to hold on.”

Mechanical Eye also presents a screening to support June’s Fierce Flix film camp for girls and gender minorities ages 8 to 16. The event takes place Saturday, May 28, from 6:30-8 p.m. at Firestorm Books & Coffee. The program features films by local women and queer filmmakers, including Anne Slatton, Patricia Furnish, James Theophilos, Constance Humphries, Charlotte Taylor, Jessica McPhatter, Kari Barrows and others. Free and open to the public.

Asheville School of Film’s series of film history and appreciation seminars continues Friday, June 3, from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Film historian Frank Thompson will lead an in-depth discussion on the works of Orson Welles. The cost of the seminar is a reduced $20, and attendees are encouraged to preregister through the ASoF website.

Sign-ups are also open for the eight-week “Screenwriting 101” course taught by local film scribe Andrew Shearer. The award-winning screenwriter will guide students through the process of the art form, applicable to both feature screenplays and short scripts. The class will meet weekly on Tuesdays from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m., starting June 7 (omitting the week of July 4). The course costs $525.

The Fine Arts Theatre’s May 11 screening of Thunder Road was so popular that an encore presentation has been set for Thursday, June 9, at 7 p.m. Special guest speaker Michael Gouge, lecturer of mass communication at UNC Asheville, will return as well. Tickets are $8 and available online and at the theater’s box office.

About Edwin Arnaudin
Edwin Arnaudin is a staff writer for Mountain Xpress. He also reviews films for and is a member of the Southeastern Film Critics Association (SEFCA) and North Carolina Film Critics Association (NCFCA). Follow me @EdwinArnaudin

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