Music Movies

Music Movies

2014-2015 PROGRAM

If you love some music with your movies, mark your calendar for these upcoming screenings where the soundtrack is a character of its own. Films range from rare concert footage to forgotten musical features and tributes to iconic talents. Keep an eye out for special live music performances too.


Debacle Records Presents: A Night of A/V Pairings

Live music!

May 28, 2015

Local experimental music festival Debacle takes over our stage for live performance (Marisa Anderson, Garek Druss, Marcus Price) paired with work by local video artists (Jodi Darby, Nick Bartoletti, Coldbrew Collective).



Puget Soundtrack: GRID presents The Strong Man

35mm film!

*THIS EVENT HAS BEEN RESCHEDULED. CHECK BACK FOR DETAILS* (Frank Capra, United States, 1926, 75 min, 35mm)



Join local music-to-film ensemble GRID for a sonic romp through Frank Capra's feature-length directorial debut The Strong Man, a Prohibition-era slapstick about a Belgian immigrant who dodges bootlegger gangsters after falling head over heals for his blind pen pal. 



Heaven Adores You

Seattle premiere!
Sponsored by KEXP 90.3!
Extended run by popular demand!

May 15 - May 26, 2015

(Nickolas Rossi, United States, 2014, DCP, 104 min)

A smart and complex portrait of Elliott Smith and his music, Heaven Adores You is neither fawning nor critical, but simply honest. The film is narrated through the memories of Smith’s closest friends and fellow musicians, supplemented with personal interviews conducted over the course of his career. Director and cinematographer Nickolas Rossi tracks the musician through life, tracing the fascinating trajectory of an artist finding his own unique sound. 



Puget Soundtrack: Newaxeyes presents Alien

Live music!

Apr 20, 2015

Take a cinematic journey through Ridley's Scott's 1979 Alien, guided by a new live musical score crafted by Newaxeyes. This local Seattle quartet smears the boundaries of genres like hiphop, psych rock, noise and musique concrete for aural alchemy that telegraphs equal parts menace and beauty. 



St. Kilda Album Release Show

Live music!

Apr 09, 2015

Skype conversation with director Megan Griffiths!

Inspired by their work together on the soundtrack for Megan Griffiths's 2011 film The Off Hours, Joshua Morrison and Jeramy Koepping recruited long time friend Matthew Brown (Trespassers William, The Soft Hills) to complete the score for Megan Griffith's next film, Eden. In 2013 the trio decided to take their collaboration further and assemble a full seven piece band to back Josh's already haunting and atmospheric indie-folk ballads. St. Kilda releases its self-titled debut album with a live set and screening of selected film scenes and new music videos. Director Megan Griffiths will skype in for a conversation with the band about their collaboration.



Puget Soundtrack: Cabana presents Microcosmos

Live music!
35mm print!

Nov 20, 2014

(Claude Nuridsany, Marie Pérennou, Switzerland, 1996, 35mm, 72 min)

Cabana welcomes you to the microcosmos. Behold the exhilarating, alien world of insect life in a French meadow, featuring stunning close ups (captured using macroscopic and time-lapse photography). Impish humor, riveting drama and carnal violence abound.  Our new Music Movies series, Puget Soundtrack, invites Seattle musicians and bands to create a live score for a film of their choosing. In November we feature Cabana, a four piece band from Seattle that plays rock with psychedelic and shoegaze leanings, influenced by Spacemen 3, Brian Jonestown Massacre, My Bloody Valentine and Sonic Youth.



Sugar and Skyjelly: Short Films and Live Music

Director Sarah Jane Lapp in attendance!
Live performance by Skyjelly to follow screening!
Sponsored by the Washington Composers Forum!

Nov 23, 2014

"What about the relationship between sweetness and power?" Sarah Jane Lapp's personal essay film Sweetface probes the shadows of sugar and labor, love and power. Tonight's screening is paired with Third Shift by Anthony Simon, where two former sugar refinery workers revisit the building 10 years after its closure. Psycho-blues-noise outfit Skyjelly will play a concert after the screening.



Film Dada: Cinema of the Bearded Heart

Co-presented with The Sprocket Society
Live accompaniment by Lori Goldston
16mm prints!

Dec 10, 2014

Explosive dada moods and rhythms emblazoned on film—an appropriately radical 1920s film movement that ties nicely to our 20th anniversary celebrations. Tonight we feature canonical shorts by Viking Eggeling, Hans Richter, Man Ray, René Clair and Fernand Léger."



Aono Jikken Ensemble: Japanese Girls at the Harbor

Co-presented with SAM’s Gardner Center for Asian Art and Ideas

Oct 04, 2014

(Hiroshi Shimizu, 1933, 71 min)

After spending the last few years touring internationally with Guy Maddin and his films, experimental music collective Aono Jikken Ensemble returns home to Seattle for this performance, a live score for Japanese Girls at the Harbor, a lyrical silent drama from 1933 by rediscovered master director Hiroshi Shimizu. This stunning event features the premiere of a new live music and sound score, with benshi narration in Japanese and English.




Co-presented with KEXP 90.3 and World Famous
Sponsored by City Arts Magazine
Curated by Bobby McHugh and Sharlese Metcalf
Happy Hour with DJ and free pizza provided by Big Mario's at 7pm!
Program at 8pm!

Oct 22 - Feb 18, 2015

Videoasis is a celebration of music videos and the artists who create them. Our quarterly showcase is a thematic mixture of locally made videos, some new, and some definite throwbacks.



You’re Looking At Country

Live country music by Nova Devonie and Jo Miller!

Jun 21, 2014

Join us for a rollicking new "big hair," all-lady edition of our occasional "You're Looking at Country" series, featuring legendary stars of country music. Travel back in time to a bygone, big screen world of shellacked wigs, beribboned gowns and fluttery false eyelashes. But the night isn't only about style—you can expect substance supreme in the music. The sadder the songs, the more you'll like them.



Music Craft: The Clash

Sponsored by KEXP 90.3!

Jul 17, 2014

(70 min)

A fan-sourced pig out of Clash club gigs, TV appearances, and moody interviews; effectively we get the career of The Clash, from guttersnipe rock to new wave reggae, with raps about the "meaning of punk." Standout numbers include "The Magnificent Seven," "Train in Vain," and "Straight to Hell." 



Music Craft: Thin Lizzy

Apr 03, 2014

(71 min)

Throw down quality time with the band many consider to be the best (more or less!). This program includes the BBC doc Bad Attitude and uncut live performances from Dublin, 1975. Part of Music Craft, our ongoing series of rare concert footage from music legends. 



Puget Soundtrack: Kingdom of the Holy Sun presents Fantastic Planet

With live score by Kingdom of the Holy Sun!

Screening followed by DJ Mamma Casserole and DJ Veins!

After party at Vermillion: bring your ticket stub and get $1 off your first drink at the split tape release party!

Apr 20, 2014

(René Laloux, France, 1973, 35mm, 72 min)

A stop-motion sci-fi cult classic of such cosmically epic proportions that it was awarded the 1973 Special Jury Prize at Cannes (a rare feat for animated films), Fantastic Planet is a work of exquisite psychedelia-infused surrealism.




Co-presented with 12toRain and City Arts Magazine
Happy hour at 7pm—Free tequila tasting bar from Sparkle Donkey (21+)!
Screening at 8pm
DJ Marco Collins in the lobby after the screening!

Apr 24 - Jul 24, 2014

Internet may have killed the video star, but music video culture is alive and kicking in the Northwest. Our quarterly showcase brings the best new PNW music videos out of the Internet ether and throws them big on the silver screen, with musicians and directors in attendance to spill the goods on the process of collaboration. Watch it bigger, listen louder, feel it realer.




With a live musical score by GRID!

May 16, 2014

This canonical, 1927 German Expressionist sci-fi opus by Fritz Lang is accompanied by a new score from GRID, the Seattle-based live music-to-film project founded by drummer Jen Gilleran.



Music Craft: Lou Reed

Sponsored by KPLU 88.5!

Feb 06, 2014

(74 min)

Get your Lou Reed fix! Music Craft presents a custom compilation of Lou Reed moments, rock-outs, and makeovers. Included: blondie Lou in Paris, 1974; Nico & John Cale jamming in an apartment, 1972; a "Sing-Along-With-Lou" ad; Lou on The Old Grey Whistle Test, 1984; excerpts from The Velvet Underground Story, 1985.



Music Craft: Roxy Music

Sponsored by KPLU 88.5!

Mar 06, 2014

(65 min)

The timeless cool and alien emo of Roxy Music is compressed into a BBC doc, supplemented with complete versions of "Ladytron" from the 1973 Montreux Jazz Festival, along with live performances from '75. 



Holiday High Notes

Dec 14, 2013

(Various directors and countries, 50 min)

Our annual Holiday High Notes concert at Northwest Film Forum is the perfect way to celebrate the the holiday season (with equal parts nostalgia and bright anticipation for the future). Join us as we welcome the renowned Northwest Boychoir, Apprentices to our cinema to sing in joyful accompaniment to a new collection of vintage and classic holiday film footage. The choir's seasonal repertoire and angelic voices are the the perfect soundtrack to a cinematic wonderland of silent film Santas, animated elves and giddy children from days gone by.



Improvement Club

Dec 13 - Dec 19, 2013

(Dayna Hanson, 2012, United States, DCP, 98 min)

Equal parts musical comedy, dance film and mockumentary, Improvement Club is a delightful new film that traces a Seattle performance group’s attempt to probe the failings of the American Revolution. When the ensemble loses its shot at a New York premiere, their wish for an audience takes them to the backwoods of the Pacific Northwest on what becomes a surreal quest for trust, togetherness and the meaning of artistic struggle.



Punk In Africa

Nov 22 - Nov 24, 2013

(Keith Jones and Deon Maas, 2012, South Africa/Czech Republic/Zimbabwe/Mozambique, 82 min)

Punk music and politics were bedfellows from the beginning: the Sex Pistols’ anthem, “God Save the Queen,” set down a manifesto for angry youth and their power, and though punk’s flame burned quickly, its imprint remained. Punk in Africa tells an unexpected and mostly hidden (even secret and banned) part of the story, the impact that punk had on southern African nations. 



The Gits

Aug 25, 2013

(Kerri O'Kane, 2007, Digi-BETA, 80 min)

This July marked the twentieth anniversary of the legendary Seattle singer (and Capitol Hill musician) Mia Zapata’s death; August 25 would have been her forty-eighth birthday. To honor the life and music of The Gits' legendary front woman, we present this special screening of a great documentary. One part The Filth and The Fury, one part CSI: Seattle, The Gits is a rock testament that is as engaging and powerful as the music that inspired it.



The Harder They Come

New restoration!

Concert ticket giveaway!

Sep 05, 2013

(Perry Henzell, 1974, Jamaica, DCP, 105 min)

In anticipation of Jimmy Cliff’s appearance at the Neptune this September, we present the film that launched reggae to an international phenomenon, casting this rhythmic music in an anti-establishment role while also propelling Jimmy Cliff to fame (and this film into the status of a classic).


Photo by Pete Purnell.

Music Craft: Leonard Cohen

Sponsored by KPLU 88.5 and Easy Street Records

Sep 14, 2013

The bed may be narrow but his arms are open wide. This I'm Your Man tour concert was performed in San Sebastian, Spain, and recorded for Spanish television on May 20, 1988. Cohen's sound and performance are the stuff of legend. Part of Music Craft, our ongoing series featuring rare concert footage from music legends.



The Great Hip Hop Hoax

Seattle premiere!

Sponsored by Easy Street Records

Sep 24 - Sep 26, 2013

(Jeanie Finlay, United Kingdom, 2013, DCP, 88 min)

A compelling documentary about truth, lies and the legacy of faking everything in the desperate pursuit of fame. When two young Scots named Gavin and Billy got a taste of hip-hop fame in their native land, they took the next logical step and hopped a train to London to audition for an American A&R team. What happened next set in motion a story that must be seen, and heard, to be believed. After being laughed out of the audition, and dubbed the “hip hop Proclaimers,” Billy and Gavin vowed revenge. The pair reinvented themselves as Silibil n’ Brains, two skater boys from Huntington Beach, California, and loosed their Frankenstein alter egos upon an unsuspecting world.



Music Craft: Nine Inch Nails

Sponsored by Easy Street Records

Oct 31, 2013

This Portland stop was near the 2008 tour's end for Nine Inch Nails. Reznor’s 2007-2008 albums supplied the majority of the set at the Rose Garden, where NIN played a vast musical vocabulary with transfixing lighting and set design. Part of Music Craft, our ongoing series featuring rare concert footage from music legends.


Image courtesy of Rex Features.

Music Craft: David Bowie

Sponsored by Easy Street Records

Nov 14, 2013

David Bowie and the Story of Ziggy Stardust is the unseen BBC documentary that tracks the beginnings of Ziggy and how he transformed art into fashion. Many new and unforgettable interviews from the original Spiders personnel are included in the film. As it documented this formative process for Bowie, the BBC hit on the key to his genius. Part of Music Craft, our ongoing series featuring rare concert footage from music legends.



Greetings From Tim Buckley

Seattle premiere!

May 24 - May 30, 2013

(Daniel Algrant, 2013, USA, Blu-ray, 99 min)

It’s 1991, and the organizer of a tribute concert for musician Tim Buckley has asked Tim's son Jeff to make his debut performance. Wrestling with confusing feelings about the father he never knew, Jeff travels to New York City, exploring the city like his father (whose story is also told in Greetings) once explored America on a cross-country tour. This feature film exploration of fame and memory also features the up-and-coming musician Penn Badgley, who plays the role of Jeff with all the uncertainty and struggle that Buckley fans have heard in his music.



Let Your Light Shine: Experimental Animations by Jodie Mack

Director in attendance!

Jun 01, 2013

Jodie Mack's insightful, handmade films use collage to explore the relationship between graphic cinema and storytelling. Combining the formal techniques and structures of abstract/absolute animation with those of cinematic genres, her film work explores the tension between form and meaning. Mack received her MFA in film, video, and new media from The School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 2007 and currently teaches animation at Dartmouth College.



Ghosts of Piramida

Seattle premiere!

Jun 02, 2013

(Andreas Koefoed, 2012, Denmark, Blu-ray, 90 min)

In the most thoughtful and affecting music documentary of the year, Danish band Efterklang travels to an abandoned Russian town where, decades earlier, miners and their families managed to live outside the rules and reality of a Soviet authority. If you could call one place a natural host for a trio of musicians, then Piramida—a town of empty buildings waiting to be filled with music—might just be it. Searching for nothing more than artistic inspiration, the musicians discover a way to bring this town’s ghost story into the here and now with their newest album. 



Music Craft: Esperanza Spalding

Sponsored by KPLU 88.5

Jun 07, 2013

Winner of Best New Artist Grammy 2011 (she beat Bieber!), Portland-raised musician Esperanza Spalding brings her young jazz act to Spain, in collaboration with flamenco specialist Nino Josele. Gifted with violin and bass chops, Spalding adds a powerful voice to a sensational stage presence. Part of Music Craft, our regular series featuring rare concert footage from music legends.



Old Farts and Jackasses

Live music by Jason Staczek and Garth Reeves!

Jun 20, 2013

Calling all feisty fogies and savvy whippersnappers: we're presenting a big screen rebuke to all things "new country." Sip a cool one in the lobby, then sit back and get schooled on the genius of the giants of country music past: Waylon and Willie, Johnny and June, Buck and Don, Conway and Loretta, Tammy and George and Mr. Merle Haggard.



Music Craft: Al Green

Sponsored by KPLU 88.5

Jul 11, 2013

In 1968, WNET NYC, began airing Soul!, a landmark televised music program. Just a few of the many artists who graced the airwaves during its 39-week run include Muhammad Ali, James Baldwin, Stokely Carmichael, the Delfonics, Earth, Wind & Fire, Louis Farrakhan, Nikki Giovanni (a frequent host), Patti LaBelle, Miriam Makeba, Curtis Mayfield, Toni Morrison, Tito Puente, Max Roach, Stevie Wonder. . .and a full hour with Al Green who was 26 when he recorded this concert in the Soul! studios. Part of Music Craft, our regular series featuring rare concert footage from music legends.



The Fearless Freaks

Wayne Coyne in attendance!

Jul 28, 2013

(Bradley Beeseley, USA, 2005, Blu-ray, 100 min)

What better way to get your groove on for the finale of the Capitol Hill Block Party than a matinee of The Fearless Freaks? This documentary about The Flaming Lips, 15 years in the making, follows the group as they go from Norman, Oklahoma punk band to free-floating rock and roll circus act, complete with blasting confetti canons and man-sized plastic bubble for front man Wayne Coyne. 



Music Craft: Miles Davis

Sponsored by KPLU 88.5

Aug 08, 2013

Join us for four rare filmed performances by Miles Davis spanning decades, from a 1959 NYC television recording to a 1991 Parisian gig (Miles died three months after filming). Part of Music Craft, our regular series featuring rare concert footage from music legends.



Lee Konitz

Sponsored by KPLU 88.5

May 02, 2013

Lee Konitz's New Quartet puts on a 2012 show in Burghausen, Germany, featuring Florian Weber on piano, Jeff Denson on bass and percussionist Ziv Ravitz. Although familiar with bebop and avant-interventions, Konitz (a Cool Jazzer) is considered one of the few alto saxophonists to retain his own sound at a time when Charlie Parker schooled other players.



Hancock, Shorter, Holland, Blade

Sponsored by KPLU 88.5

Apr 04, 2013

(76 min)

This 2004 show from Salzau, Germany features a veritable "super band" of Herbie Hancock, Wayne Shorter, Dave Holland, and Brian Blade, inviting cheer from jazz fellaheen. Dig the set list: "Sonrisa," "V," "Pathways," "Aung San Suu Kyi," "Prometheus Unbound" and "Cantaloupe Island." Part of our ongoing series Music Craft, featuring rare concert footage from music legends.



Ornette Coleman’s Prime Time

Sponsored by KPLU 88.5

Mar 21, 2013

(58 min)

Music Craft continues at the Film Forum with some scrupulous "Harmolodics" from Free Jazz badass Ornette Coleman and his Prime Time gang. Performing in 1988 in Montreal, with guitar power-assists from Pat Metheny, Chris Rosenberg and Ken Wessel, Coleman rouses multi-melodies and polytones in a high-energy orbit of pieces such as "Latin Genetics" and "Bourgeois Boogie."