Museum of the Moving Image to screen the director’s four features, including his newest, Queen of Earth, with Perry and star Elisabeth Moss in person, August 22–25, 2015
Director, screenwriter and actor Alex Ross Perry has become one of the most accomplished and provocative American independent filmmakers in a very short period of time, with four disparate feature films that reinvent genres, are emotionally transgressive, feature scabrous dark humor, and evoke great cinema of the past while pushing ahead towards new forms. From August 22 through 25, 2015, The Museum of the Moving Image will present all of his features, including a special preview screening of the new film Queen of Earth, with Perry and Moss in person, on August 25. (IFC FILMS WILL RELEASE QUEEN OF EARTH ON AUGUST 26th IN NEW YORK WITH A NATIONAL ROLLOUT TO FOLLOW)
Perry was raised in Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania, where he worked on a local television news program during high school. After graduating, he moved to New York City to attend New York University and graduated from its highly-rated film program. in 2006. From 2005 to 2007, Perry worked at the East Village-based video store Kim’s Video, where he met many of the cast and crew members who would later work on his films, including director of photography Sean Price Williams. Perry’s first feature, Impolex, premiered in 2009. Made on a budget of $15,000 and shot on 16mm film stock, the film is an absurdist comedy inspired by Thomas Pynchon‘s novel Gravity’s Rainbow and was released theatrically in 2011.
Perry’s second feature, The Color Wheel, premiered at film festivals in 2011. The film, a dark screwball comedy influenced by the work of Philip Roth, was co-written by Perry with Carlen Altman; the two also played the lead roles in the film. The film was named the best undistributed film of 2011 by the Indiewire and Village Voice polls, and placed 12th in a similar poll conducted by Film Comment. It was released theatrically on May 18, 2012.
Perry’s next film, a comedy titled Listen Up Philip, which premiered at the 2014 Sundance Film Festival. Perry recently acted in Bob Byington‘s film 7 Chinese Brothers, which was released in early 2015. In April 2015, Disney Studios hired Perry to write a live-action adaptation of the Winnie the Pooh franchise, while he also optioned Don DeLillo‘s The Names for a feature adaptation.
“Alex Ross Perry’s two most recent films feature unforgettable and vivid performances—most notably Elisabeth Moss’s daring portrayal of emotional despair in the astonishing Queen of Earth,” said Chief Curator David Schwartz. “The Museum is pleased to offer New Yorkers an opportunity to catch up on an impressive body of work by this unique emerging talent who has incorporated his love of cinema into his own original vision.”
SCHEDULE FOR ‘THE FILMS OF ALEX ROSS PERRY,’ AUGUST 22–25, 2015
Screenings take place in either the Sumner M. Redstone Theater or the Celeste and Armand Bartos Screening Room at Museum of the Moving Image, 36-01 35 Avenue in Astoria, New York. Unless otherwise noted, tickets for MOMI screenings are $12 adults ($9 seniors and students / $6 children 3–12) and free for Museum members at the Film Lover level and above. Advance tickets are available online at http://movingimage.us. Ticket purchase includes same-day admission to the Museum’s galleries.
SATURDAY, AUGUST 22, 4:30 PM.
Dir. Alex Ross Perry. 2009, 73 mins. 35mm. With Riley O’Bryan, Kate Lyn Sheil, Bruno Meyrick Jones. In his feature debut, Perry was loosely inspired by Thomas Pynchon’s Gravity’s Rainbow. Taking place just after World War II, the film follows the shambling young soldier Tyrone S. as he wanders through the forest looking for German V2 rockets and encounters a number of inexplicably figures, including an eyepatch-wearing Englishman, a garrulous octopus, and the girlfriend he left behind to join the army.
The Color Wheel
SUNDAY, AUGUST 23, 3:00 PM.
Dir. Alex Ross Perry. 2011, 83 mins. 35mm. With Carlen Altman, Alex Ross Perry. Having recently broken up with her boyfriend and former professor, aspiring TV weathergirl JR calls on her estranged younger brother Colin to help retrieve her possessions at her ex’s apartment. What follows is one of the most uncomfortable road movies ever, as the two equally despicable characters incessantly pick on, undercut, and attack one another. “Perry gives a harsh, sarcastic twist to the intimate rivalry of siblings…. [He] directs these uproarious rapid-fire flareups with exquisite comic timing and incisive comic framing,” wrote Richard Brody in The New Yorker.
Listen Up Philip
SUNDAY, AUGUST 23, 5:30 PM.
Dir. Alex Ross Perry. 2014, 109 mins. With Jason Schwartzman, Elisabeth Moss, Jonathan Pryce. Feeling alienated by the pressures of the New York literary world and the girlfriend who financially supports him, the narcissistic and self-involved author Philip Lewis Friedman seeks refuge in the country home of his equally self-obsessed idol, the older, more established writer Ike Zimmerman. “Words do more than hurt, they also slash and burn in this sharp, dyspeptic, sometimes gaspingly funny exploration of art and life […],” noted Manohla Dargis, Film Critic for The New York Times.
SPECIAL PREVIEW SCREENING
Queen of Earth
TUESDAY, AUGUST 25, 7:30 PM.
With Elisabeth Moss and Alex Ross Perry in person
Dir. Alex Ross Perry. 90 mins. With Elisabeth Moss, Patrick Fugit, Katherine Waterson. Catherine (played in what Variety calls “an utterly fearless central performance by Elisabeth Moss”) has entered a particularly dark period in her life: her father, a famous artist whose affairs she managed, has recently died, and on the heels of his death she’s dumped by her boyfriend James (Kentucker Audley). Looking to recuperate, Catherine heads out to her best friend Virginia’s (Katherine Waterston) lake house for some much needed relaxation. However, fissures between the two women begin to appear, sending Catherine into a downward spiral of delusion and madness. She is overcome with memories of time spent at the same house with James the year before. As Catherine reaches out to Virginia with attempts at connection, Virginia begins spending increasing amounts of time with a local love interest, Rich (Patrick Fugit), and fissures in the relationship between the two women begin to appear, sending Catherine into a downward spiral of delusion and madness. A bracing, eerie look at the deep bonds of friendship and the horrific effects of such bonds being frayed, Queen of Earth is a thrilling examination of a deeply complex relationship between two miserable women. As Scott Foundas points out in his Variety review, ”Perry is working in a style that seems equally influenced by doppelganger narratives like Bergman’s Persona and Brian De Palma’s Sisters. “
Tickets: $25 public/$15 Museum members at the Film Lover level or above/Free for Silver Screen members and above.
The Museum of the Moving Image‘s (movingimage.us) mission is to advance the understanding, enjoyment, and appreciation of the art, history, technique, and technology of film, television, and digital media. The Museum also host screenings of significant cinematic works; discussion programs featuring actors, directors, craftspeople, and business leaders; and education programs which serve more than 50,000 students each year. The Museum facilities—acclaimed for both its accessibility and bold design—is housed in a building owned by the City of New York and located on the campus of Kaufman Astoria Studios. Its operations are made possible in part by public funds provided through the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, the New York City Economic Development Corporation, the New York State Council on the Arts, the National Endowment for the Arts, the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Institute of Museum and Library Services, and the Natural Heritage Trust (administered by the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation, and Historic Preservation). The Museum also receives generous support from numerous corporations, foundations, and individuals.
Hours: Wednesday–Thursday,10:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Friday, 10:30 to 8:00 p.m. Saturday-Sunday, 11:30 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.
Film Screenings: Friday evenings, Saturdays and Sundays, and as scheduled. Unless otherwise noted, tickets for screenings are $12 ($9 students and seniors / free for Museum members at the Film Lover level and above) will be available for advance purchase online at movingimage.us. Screening tickets include same-day admission to the Museum’s galleries.
Museum Admission: $12.00 for adults; $9.00 for persons over 65 and for students with ID; $6.00 for children ages 3–12. Children under 3 and Museum members are admitted free. Admission to the galleries is free on Fridays, 4:00 to 8:00 p.m.
Location: 36-01 35 Avenue (at 37 Street) in Astoria.
Subway: M (weekdays only) or R to Steinway Street. Q (weekdays only) or N to 36 Avenue.
Program Information: Telephone: 718 777 6888; Website: movingimage.us
Membership: http://movingimage.us/support/membership or 718 777 6877