Noise Pop Film Series

The Noise Pop Film Series is back for its fifteenth year of celebrating films that embrace and reflect independent music, while accurately and joyously observing the varied niches of youth culture. Taking place at the City’s many indie cinemas, our selections highlight the diversity that makes music such a wide-reaching pleasure, showcasing the trials, tribulations, agonies and accomplishments that make up the industry we love. See music in a new way.
 

February 27, 2014
Noise Pop Film Series Reception
New People Cinema / 8:15PM–9:00PM
Come and celebrate the Noise Pop Film Series. Grab a bite from Blowfish Sushi or a glass of wine from J. Lohr Winery while chatting with director Jeremy Xido before the screening of his movie, Death Metal Angola.

DIR: Jeff Broadway
TRT: 93 mins
Website

February 26, 2014
SF PREMIERE
Stones Throw Presents
Our Vinyl Weighs a Ton
Q & A with Director Jeff Broadway and Stones Throw co-founder Peanut Butter Wolf
NPHQ @ The NWBLK / 5:00PM / $10 / 21+
March 2, 2014
Artists’ Television Access / 2:00PM / $10
Our Vinyl Weighs A Ton is a feature-length documentary about avant-garde Los Angeles-based record label Stones Throw Records. The film weaves together rare concert footage, never-before-seen archival material, inner-circle home video and photographs and in-depth interviews with the artists who put the mighty Stones Throw Records on the map. Our Vinyl Weighs A Ton gives an exclusive look into the label’s left-of-center artists, history, culture, and global following. This exciting and fresh doc by director Jeff Broadway features exclusive interviews with Kanye West, Snoop Dogg, Madlib, Common, Questlove, Talib Kweli, Mike D (Beastie Boys), Tyler the Creator, and many more.

DIR: Tom Berninger
TRT: 75 mins
Trailer
Website

February 26, 2014
SF PREMIERE
Mistaken for Strangers
Q & A with director Tom Berninger to follow
Roxie Theater / 7:00PM / $10
SECOND SCREENING ADDED
March 1, 2014
NPHQ @ The NWBLK / 12:00PM / $10 / 21+
In 2010, rock band The National were about to embark on the biggest tour of their career. After ten years as a band, and five critically acclaimed albums, they were finally enjoying wider recognition. Lead singer Matt Berninger invited his younger brother, Tom, to join the tour’s crew. A budding horror filmmaker, Tom—who is nine years younger than Matt and listens exclusively to heavy metal—decided to bring his camera along. Tom’s at sea in the world of indie rock, and living in his brother’s shadow brings out the younger sibling in him—he drinks, complains, and struggles to balance his ambition with his tour responsibilities. The result is a film about brothers and about making something of your own.

DIR: Lola Besis, Ruben Anwar
TRT: 90 mins
Trailer
Website

February 26, 2014
SF PREMIERE
Swim Little Fish Swim
Roxie Theater / 9:00PM / $10
Full of art, music and everyday magic, Swim Little Fish Swim is a dreamlike journey from childhood to adulthood depicting three intertwined characters at turning points in their lives.

Maggie? Rainbow? Leeward and Mary cannot even agree on their 3-year old daughter’s name anymore. Mary is a hardworking nurse who dreams of only one thing: changing her life around. She resents her husband for being an irresponsible, overgrown adolescent incapable of holding down a job. Leeward is an atypical, idealistic musician who fancies himself a misunderstood artist and a New Age visionary. Enter Lilas, (co-directr Lola Bessis) a 19-year old French artist and daughter of a world famous painter, who’s trying to make it in New York and get away from her overbearing mother. When the bubbly young woman moves into the couple’s tiny Chinatown apartment, their already fragile balance is upset even further.

The filmmakers have created a “perfect mesh of sound and vision” in the unique, and original soundtrack that works so perfectly with the characters personas, with most of the musicians themselves appearing in the film like Brooklyn psych pop group Toys and Tiny Instruments, 17-year old newcomer Queens based folk soul singer Candace Lee and and Last Good Tooth frontman Penn Sultan.

DIR: Reuben Atlas
TRT: 120 mins
Trailer
Website

February 27, 2014
SF PREMIERE
Brothers Hypnotic
New People Cinema / 7:00PM / $10
For the eight young men in the Hypnotic Brass Ensemble, “brotherhood” is literal: they’re all sons of anti-establishment jazz legend, Phil Cohran. They all grew up in the same house, in a family of 24 siblings. Cohran and their mothers raised them together on Chicago’s tough South side on a strict diet of jazz, funk and Black Consciousness. Family band practice began at 6 AM. Now grown, as they raise eight brass horns to the sky—whether playing their unique blend of jazz, hip-hop, and funk in the streets of New York City, collaborating with Mos Def, or wowing a music festival—they find the values their father bred into them constantly tested. They struggle to decide whether his principles really are their own.

DIR: Jeremy Xido
TRT: 90 mins
Trailer
Website

February 27, 2014
SF PREMIERE
Disposable Film Festival Presents
Death Metal Angola
Q & A with director Jeremy Xido to follow
New People Cinema / 9:00PM / $10
Following nearly 40 years of unrelenting war—with every attendant horror—peace and reconstruction are slowly arriving to Angola. Damaged first by the war for independence from Portugal, Angola was then ripped apart by a devastating civil war that orphaned thousands of children. Huambo, Angola’s second largest city, finds 55 of these children in the Okutiuka orphanage under the care of Sonia Ferreira. Sonia’s boyfriend, Wilker Flores, is a death metal guitarist who uses the brutal sounds and rhythms of this hardcore music as a path to healing, or, as Sonia says, “to clear out the debris from all these years of war.”

Death Metal Angola tracks Wilker and Sonia’s dream—to stage Angola’s first-ever national rock concert, bringing together members from different strands of the Angolan hardcore scene from different provinces—as it unfolds in fits and starts against the bombed out and mined backdrop of the formerly stately Huambo. Rubble and deconstructed spaces provide scenic reminders of whyhardcore music has gained a foothold.

What initially looks like a Quixotic undertaking gains momentum, aided by social media and propelled by members of the various branches of the death metal hardcore underground, who join together to stage the event. Raucous and righteous, DMA’s look at a rock show off the grid is fulfilling, haunting, and real.

DIR: Joe Angio
TRT: 95 mins
Trailer
Website

February 28, 2014
SF PREMIERE
Revenge of the Mekons
Q&A with director Joe Angio to follow
Artists’ Television Access / 7:00PM / $10
Political provocateurs. Social agitators. Punk’s reigning contrarians. The Mekons have been called all this and more. Revenge of the Mekons chronicles the unlikely story of a group of radical British art students who formed in the first blast of punk rock in 1977. Against all odds—and despite a career consigned to the margins—the Mekons continue to tour and make adventurous and challenging albums, despite the fact that its eight members are separated by thousands of miles across two continents. Adored with cult-like devotion by fans and critics alike, the Mekons have redefined themselves and their music repeatedly over the years while staying true to the punk ethos. But the Mekons are more than just a band. They’re also an art collective whose members make art individually, collectively and in collaboration with other avant-garde artists. A rich and illuminating account of a fascinating, criminally under-recognized band, Revenge of the Mekons is a lively, inspiring and entertaining film—with killer music, to boot!

DIR: Lily Keber
TRT: 90 mins
Trailer
Website

February 28, 2014
SF PREMIERE
Bayou Maharajah
The tragic genius of James Booker
Artists’ Television Access / 9:00PM / $10
Bayou Maharajah explores the life and music of New Orleans piano legend James Booker, the man Dr. John described as “the best black, gay, one-eyed junkie piano genius New Orleans has ever produced.” A brilliant pianist, his eccentricities and showmanship belied a life of struggle, prejudice, and isolation. Illustrated with never-before-seen concert footage, rare personal photos and exclusive interviews, the film paints a portrait of this overlooked genius.

DIR: Marcelo Mesquita, Guilherme Valiengo
TRT: 80 mins
Website

March 1, 2014
SF PREMIERE
Juxtapoz Presents
CIDADE CINZA / GREY CITY
NPHQ @ The NWBLK / 6:00PM / Free / 21+
On the streets of São Paulo, Brazil a new form of graffiti art was born. Like wildfire, the exceptional works of artists like Os Gêmeos, Nunca, Nina Ise, Fink and Zefix spread through the streets of the city, and then to art galleries and museums around the world. But when a new law against “visual pollution” threatens to cover up and destroy their huge and breathtaking works on city walls, the artists unleash a graffiti war against the local government, giving birth to one of the most creative resistance movements in Latin American art. Music by Criolo Doido.

DIR: Bill Cody
TRT: 79 mins
Trailer
Website

March 2, 2014
SF PREMIERE
Kids Like You & Me
Q&A with Director Bill Cody to follow
Artists’ Television Access / 9:00PM / $10
Director, Bill Cody, has fashioned a second look at his travels with Atlanta’s Black Lips and Beirut’s Lazzy Lung. A meditation on touring the Middle East bringing the viewer into the process of walking the streets of Cairo, Alexandria and traveling through Egypt. This version, while more quiet, is also more experimental and immersive. View this second version of the tour and feel what it is like to travel in the country where so much is happening every day.

Kids Like You & Me, directed by Bill Cody, shows the punk rockers playing where few western bands have gone before, deep into the Middle East, including three groundbreaking stops in Egypt. (The last known American rock band to play Egypt being The Grateful Dead in 1978!) Get on the bus with Black Lips and their good friends, Lebanese indie rockers, Lazzy Lung and see the people of the Middle East in daily life. Shopkeepers and restaurant owners. Skaters, graffiti artists and musicians. Revolutionaries and dreamers. Kids like you and me! The film highlights the flower punk quartet’s life changing journey through the land of the pyramids for a documentary that is both heart-wrenching and soul-churning in the midst of pure cultural chaos. You’ll never look at the Middle East the same way after seeing this film.