|8:30pm||Live Music by Yellow Dogs|
On The Lawn
50 Bedford Ave. at North 13th St., Brooklyn, NY 11222
L to Bedford Ave. or G to Nassau Ave.
The always-loony Zellner brothers churn out a bizarre southern-fried tale of a young girl who finds a mysterious woman trapped in a hole in the forest.
Filmmakers David and Nathan Zellner will be in attendance for a Q and A following the screening. After the Q and A there is an after-party with complimentary beverages.
Kid-Thing (David Zellner | USA | 83 min.)
Austin-based sibling filmmakers (and Rooftop Films alumnus) Nathan and David Zellner make movies in a loony vacuum in which the only constant is a fixation on the bizarre. While technically geared toward comedy, neither their feature-length Goliath nor innumerable offbeat short films commit themselves to punchline-driven humor. Instead, they allow the absurdity of individual moments to transform otherwise bleak scenarios into simultaneously funny and oddly perceptive observations. Kid-Thing, the brothers' latest feature-length effort (for which David takes solo directing credit), pushes that style in a less comic direction while remaining distinctly Zellnerian. The film conveys a mash-up of inspirations that suggest Harmony Korine meets Terrence Malick.
Kid-Thing follows angst-riddled prepubescent Annie (newcomer Sidney Aguirre). We first see her looking bored and it doesn't take long to see why: wasting her days in a drab landscape on the outskirts of Austin, the moody 10-year-old lives in a decrepit home with her goat-farmer dad (Nathan Zellner), a clueless sad sack whose free time involves such aimless tasks as shooting fireworks and scratching lotto cards with his equally unfocused friend (David Zellner). Annie finds an outlet in random acts of social rebellion, chucking flotsam at passing cars, wielding a paint gun at the food mart and hurtling through the forest with aimless energy.
And then she happens upon a mysterious hole in the ground near her home, where she hears an old woman's voice (Susan Tyrell) calling for help down below. Rather than share her discovery with her father, Annie keeps the secret to herself and cultivates a curious relationship with the trapped figure.
As the plot takes various unexpected turns, Kid-Thing maintains a hypnotic effect. Images of majestic nature pair up with consistently insightful framing strategies to reflect Annie's perspective of the world as a wondrous environment littered with events and scenery just beyond her comprehension.
- Eric Kohn
"Koory, Looloosh and Obaash met and formed the way of young rock bands since time immemorial: Hanging out at a local park as teenagers, among skaters and punk rockers, they bonded over their mutual tastes and began playing together. It’s a pretty standard, unremarkable story — except it took place in Iran, where, as Koory puts it, “you can find instruments, but the problem is that you’re probably going to get the shittiest ones, at triple the price,” and where the legality of pop music is, he says, similar to that of marijuana: You can buy the supplies, but don’t get caught fooling with the substance. In Brooklyn, where Yellow Dogs currently reside, forming a post-punk band with your friends is about as remarkable an activity as ordering Thai food. In Tehran, it was like more like a covert operation. And, lo and behold, the music they produced, the four-song EP Upper Class Complexity, crackles with more life, wit, tension and imagination than most of their peers. Maybe there’s something to be said for having to work for it.
The sound of Upper Class Complexity feels a little out-of-step with the current Brooklyn-scene moment, but in the best possible way: While more bands are chasing hazy good vibes and New Zealand-inspired indie jangle (Real Estate‘s self-titled appears to be slowly morphing into some kids’ Is This It?), Yellow Dogs’ music harks back to a moment when every band had a busily riding hi-hat, rhythmic stabs of guitar, and a head full of frayed nerves: the brittle post-punk moment of circa-2003. Yellow Dogs songs are fiendish, caffeinated little puzzles of warily circling guitar and keyboards, each element feeling close and cramped, like riders stuck in a stalled elevator." eMusic