This speaker-busting documentary celebrates the impressive legacy of the Roland TR-808 drum machine, whose ground-shaking futuristic beats have shaped the course of hip-hop and dance music history.
Navigating the streets of New Orleans, Les Blank takes us from the vibrancy of second-line parades down backstreets to jazz funerals, pots of crawfish brewing, and the intense competition of Mardi Gras Indian troupes.
An intimate, overwhelmingly moving tribute to Amy Winehouse, the great young British soul singer whose talent and charisma brought her more fame than anyone might be able to handle. From the director of Senna.
Om de wereld in 50 concerten
Dutch director Heddy Honigmann’s beautiful documentary follows Amsterdam’s Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra to Russia, Argentina and Soweto, subtly exploring the depth of feeling music stirs in both players and listeners.
A winning portrait of Italian-born Auckland concert pianist Flavio Villani as he returns like the prodigal son to Italy for his concert debut, scaling one of the summits of the Romantic repertoire.
Archival film of Scottish life is shaped into a kaleidoscopic evocation of work and recreation in the 20th century, stirringly scored with original songs by Fife musician/singer/songwriter King Creosote.
Shot in 1972, this is an energetic down-home portrait of the Louisiana Creole musician Clifton Chenier aka the King of Zydeco. Les Blank beautifully captures the propulsive, foot-tapping joy of Chenier’s music.
Jon Mikl Thor was a bodybuilding, steel-bending, brick-smashing metal star in the 70s and 80s whose band never quite made it big. Years later, in this funny and endearing doco, he attempts a comeback that nearly kills him.
Cole Porter’s irreverent take on The Taming of the Shrew is one of the most pleasurable (and fabulously danced) MGM musicals of the 50s – and the only one produced in 3D. With Ann Miller, Howard Keel and Bob Fosse.
The candid, definitive and hugely entertaining tale of the rise of The Who, named for the cinephilic pair of Swinging Londoners who figured that managing a band would be a great way to get a movie made.
A children’s orchestra playing instruments fashioned from trash brings their impoverished home in Paraguay to the attention of the world in this SXSW Audience Award-winning doco.
Live Cinema with Lawrence Arabia and Carnivorous Plant Society
Coney Island 1928 is brought to teeming life with the World Premiere performance of a new score by Lawrence Arabia and Carnivorous Plant Society.
The life, music and passionate commitment of the irresistible Mavis Staples are lovingly chronicled in this spirited doco – with help from fans Bob Dylan, Bonnie Raitt, Chuck D, Wilco’s Jeff Tweedy and Prince.
As deeply fascinated by the conceptual as the biographical, this comprehensive portrait of one of our great experimental artists is essential viewing for anyone with even a passing interest in New Zealand art and music.
Completed in 1974 and withheld from exhibition until now, Les Blank’s legendary documentary about musician Leon Russell mixes live and studio performances into an amazing time capsule from the heart of 70s rock.
Ethan Hawke’s music-laden documentary ushers us into the company of octogenarian former concert pianist and tireless teacher Seymour Bernstein, and invites us to share his humour, vitality and penetrating wisdom.
Les Blank journeys down the bayous and byways of Southwest Louisiana in this perennially fresh portrait of the region’s Cajun community from 1970. The Balfa Brothers, Nathan Abshire and Marc Savoy provide the soundtrack.
Filmed over nine months of night shoots, the hypnotically immersive Tchoupitoulas shows us nightlife in and around New Orleans’ French Quarter through the eyes of astounded children.
Texas sharecropper Mance Lipscomb began singing and playing guitar at an early age but was largely unknown until he was recorded by Chris Strachwitz at the age of 65. This invaluable portrait was filmed by Les Blank in 1971.
With a soundtrack you can sing along to, this spirited doco celebrates the hitherto anonymous LA session musicians who enlivened hit LPs by The Byrds, Cher, Nancy and Frank Sinatra, The Beach Boys, The Monkees and many more.