Wednesday, May 07, 2008

BAM goes down

The Brooklyn Academy of Music kicks off a salute to indie cinematographer Ed Lachman with a rare showing of the notorious Ken Park this Friday. I saw the undistributed-in-the-U.S. movie at a 2002 Lincoln Center screening, and as you can tell from the poster (which newspaper or magazine had the stones to reprint this?) it flirts with underage pornography, and tips right over with the legal-age castmembers--a lengthy sequence of autoerotic masturbation by one its disaffected male characters "pays off" in more ways than one. Lachman is the co-director, but the real auteur is undoubtedly the button-pushing photographer and filmmaker Larry Clark, whose controversial Kids (1995) and Bully (2001) were mere preludes to this one. (He's been fairly chaste since this one.) I don't want to oversell it, if you're fixing for a sex romp and would rather not go hunting for the Russian-market DVD that's out there; it's an ugly, not particularly arousing picture about ugly, not particularly arousing goings-on among California skateboarders, with occasional bits of beauty (a teen three-way is gorgeously lit). Clark and Lachman will be there for the screening...uncompromising artists or dirty old men? You decide.

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