Retro: The Unquiet American


Owen Land
USA 1975
22 min

This comic short by Owen Land from 1975 could conceivably be regarded as the <![CDATA[<i>]]>Hellzapoppin’<![CDATA[</i>]]> of the American experimental film. Just as <![CDATA[<i>]]>Hellzapoppin’<![CDATA[</i>]]> alludes to the then-contemporary <![CDATA[<i>]]>Citizen Kane, Wide Angle Saxon<![CDATA[</i>]]> includes a parody of Hollis Frampton’s 1971 (nostalgia), called <![CDATA[<i>]]>Regrettable Redding<![CDATA[</i>]]> ­Condescension (alluding to Land’s own 1971 ­<![CDATA[<i>]]>Remedial Reading Comprehension<![CDATA[</i>]]>), which is credited in turn to one “Al Rutcurts” (i.e., the word “structural” spelled backwards). But to complicate matters considerably (if quite obscurely), Land (or George Landow, as he was known at the time) converted to fundamentalist Christianity shortly before making this film, and we are told at the outset that this film’s nominal hero, “Earl Greaves”, has recently had a ­religious conversion as well.

This film is screened together with <filmlink id=\"3125\">Sherlock Jr.</filmlink> and <filmlink id=\"3126\">Who Killed Who?</filmlink>.

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