Hippie Modernism: Cinema and Counterculture, 1964–1974

February 7–May 20, 2017

Films that actively participated in emerging counterculture movements of the 1960s and 1970s, presented in conjunction with the exhibiton Hippie Modernism: The Struggle for Utopia.

Read full description
  • Jordan Belson, Chakra. Courtesy Center for Visual Music

  • Medium Cool

  • Monterey Pop

  • Gimme Shelter

  • Upcoming
  • Past
  • Past

Past Films

  • Analog Light Show Festival

    • Thursday, May 18 7 PM
    • Friday, May 19 7 PM
    • Saturday, May 20 7 PM

    Join us to celebrate the psychedelic art form of live light performance at this festival of live music and visual wizardry.

  • Elegy to Ecstasy: Films from Canyon Cinema

    • Thursday, May 11 7 PM

    The visionary Bay Area filmmaking collective Canyon Cinema has been expanding cinema—and minds—since 1967. This program of shorts includes works by Bruce Baillie, Warren Sonbert, Barbara Hammer, Chick Strand, Gunvor Nelson, Peter Rose, Beverly and Tony Conrad, and more.

    Antonella Bonfanti and Edith Kramer in conversation

  • The Holy Mountain

    • Sunday, May 7 7 PM
    Alejandro Jodorowsky
    Mexico, 1973

    One man’s (acid) trip toward enlightened consciousness heads across deserts, galaxies, islands, and more. The most outrageously psychedelic film ever made: you can’t understand the early 1970s without this.

  • Festival Express

    • Saturday, April 29 7:30 PM
    Bob Smeaton
    UK, 2003

    Free admission!

    On BAMPFA’s outdoor screen on Addison Street. Bring your own blanket or lawn chair!

    All aboard for a cross-Canada train tour with Janis Joplin, the Grateful Dead, and other rock legends. With Les Blank’s short God Respects Us When We Work, but Loves Us When We Dance.

  • Luminous Procuress

    • Friday, April 21 7:30 PM
    Steven Arnold
    United States, 1971

    World Premiere of Restored 16mm Print
    Score by Warner Jepson

    The legendary, gender-obliterating funfest unleashed by the cantankerous cross-dressing Cockettes shines on in this immaculate restored print.

    Read more about Luminous Procuress and its history in the article Illumination Procured: Steven Arnold and the Body Eclectic.

    Steve Seid, Rumi Missabu, Tsvi Strauch, Vishnu Dass in Conversation

  • Space Is the Place

    • Saturday, April 1 8 PM
    John Coney
    United States, 1974, 1993

    Intergalactic be-bop meets black liberation in this surrealist musical document of Sun Ra, the eccentric performer/philosopher who boasted a consciousness both extraterrestrial and Afrocentric. Jazz from outer space, filmed in the Bay Area. With Toney W. Merritt’s short, What’s This?

  • The Murder of Fred Hampton

    • Thursday, March 23 7 PM
    Howard Alk, Mike Gray
    United States, 1971

    Restored 35mm Print

    This impassioned political documentary investigates the killing of Black Panther Fred Hampton, and is an indictment of the Chicago police force.

    Introduced by Waldo E. Martin

  • Zabriskie Point

    • Saturday, March 4 8:15 PM
    • Sunday, March 19 7 PM
    Michelangelo Antonioni
    United States, 1970

    Antonioni filmed the sixties war between radical and straight cultures in LA and Death Valley. “A sorrowing, stranger’s-eye view of modern America” (Time).


  • Punishment Park

    • Saturday, March 18 8:15 PM
    Peter Watkins
    United States, 1971

    Reality television meets political oppression in this notorious dystopian vision of a near future where activists are set loose in the desert for the benefit of viewing audiences. A Vietnam war precursor to The Hunger Games. With the Black Panther short, Off the Pig!


  • Stagger Lee

    • Friday, March 10 7:30 PM
    Francisco Newman, Allen Willis
    United States, 1970

    An interview with Black Panther Bobby Seale while he was incarcerated in San Francisco County Jail. With William Klein's Eldridge Cleaver, Black Panther, a portrait of the Panther leader during his exile in Algiers.

  • Gimme Shelter

    • Sunday, February 19 7 PM
    David Maysles, Albert Maysles, Charlotte Zwerin
    United States, 1971

    Archival 35mm Print

    Often called the greatest rock-and-roll film ever made, Gimme Shelter scrutinizes the Rolling Stones’s infamous Altamont Speedway concert, where hippies, Hells Angels, and rock stars combined to signal the bitter end of the Summer of Love.


  • Sympathy for the Devil

    • Saturday, February 18 8 PM
    Jean-Luc Godard
    United Kingdom, 1968

    Digital Restoration

    Godard follows the Rolling Stones as they work on a new album, intercutting those scenes with footage of the Black Panthers, Maoist hippies, and scenes of urban unrest. With Joyce Wieland’s short, Rat Life and Diet in North America.


  • Symbiopsychotaxiplasm: Take One

    • Friday, February 17 7:30 PM
    William Greaves
    United States, 1968

    The original “docu-fiction hybrid,” Symbiopsychotaxiplasm documents (or does it?) a film being shot over and over again in New York’s Central Park.

  • In the Year of the Pig

    • Wednesday, February 15 7 PM
    Emile de Antonio
    United States, 1969

    Restored 35mm Print

    This Academy Award–nominated documentary makes the case against US intervention in Vietnam using an incendiary montage style. One of the most effective antiwar documentaries ever made.

  • Medium Cool

    • Saturday, February 11 8:30 PM
    • Sunday, February 12 7 PM
    Haskell Wexler
    United States, 1969

    New 35mm Print

    Haskell Wexler audaciously set a romance against the tumultuous 1968 Democratic Convention in Chicago, filmed documentary style. "Intensely American in its images and its ambition" (Newsweek).

  • Monterey Pop

    • Wednesday, February 8 7 PM
    D. A. Pennebaker
    United States, 1968

    This legendary concert film on the 1967 Monterey Pop festival captures Otis Redding, The Who, Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin, and more at the height of their powers. With Agnès Varda’s filmed-in-Oakland Black Panthers.


  • Jordan Belson: Films Sacred and Profane

    • Tuesday, February 7 7:30 PM

    Presented in association with the Center for Visual Music

    Jordan Belson made abstract films richly woven with cosmological imagery exploring consciousness, transcendence, and the nature of light itself. Titles include Bop Scotch, Mandala, Chakra, Samadhi, and more.

    With Stephen Beck in person. Introduced by Cindy Keefer.