Life Ain’t No Candy Mountain: Punk Out with Robert Frank and Rudy Wurlitzer’s Cult Weirdo Road Movie in 35mm

Music Box Theatre – 3733 N. Southport Ave.
General Admission: $7

Monday, February 6 @ 7:30 PM
Directed by Robert Frank and Rudy Wurlitzer • 1987
The cult rock ‘n’ roll weirdo road movie of your dreams, the wildly underseen and very funny Candy Mountain somehow manages to be both a lark and a creative and thematic apotheosis for both of its codirectors, photographer/filmmaker Robert Frank and novelist/screenwriter Rudy Wurlitzer. Mediocre musician and all-around jackass Julius (Kevin J. O’Connor) insinuates himself into a deal to track down legendary and reclusive guitar maker Elmore Silk, an oblique figure who has left a trail of disgruntled family members and forlorn ex-lovers in his wake. Julius finds that nothing about his assignment is easy as he loses vehicle after vehicle, drinks himself into a stupor, and meets innumerable deranged personalities (a great many of whom are played by notable musicians, including Tom Waits as a yuppie, Joe Strummer and Arto Lindsay as the world’s worst no wave band, and Dr. John as a wheelchair-bound psychopath) whom he invariably leaves frustrated, confused, or enraged. Given that Frank and Wurlitzer were best known, respectively, for the photography book The Americans and the screenplay for Two-Lane Blacktop, it should come as no shock that their feature film collaboration would so greatly concern itself with America’s preoccupation with the road and wayward notions of freedom. Nor should its deeply odd, dead-end splendor surprise us, given the tremendous creative brain trust involved. (CW)
91 min • Xanadu Films  • 35mm from the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston
Preceded by: “Energy and How to Get It” (Robert Frank, Rudy Wurlitzer, and Gary Hill, 1981) – 16mm – 28 min

Buy Tickets in advance on Brown Paper Tickets.


And join us again next week for our regularly scheduled program at:

The Auditorium at Northeastern Illinois University – Building E, 3701 W. Bryn Mawr Ave
General Admission: $5 • NEIU Students: $2

Wednesday, February 8 @ 7:30 PM
Directed by Jerry Lewis • 1961
If I see if it says I go to a place, I go there, but if I don’t, ’cause then it won’t be clear… Paramutual Pictures is bleeding money and nobody can figure out where from, so studio head Tom ‘T.P.’ Paramutual (Brian Donlevy) hires Morty S. Tashman (Jerry Lewis)–“someone so stupid he won’t realize he’s eavesdropping”–as a spy. What follows is an episodic collection of some of Jerry Lewis’s best scenes: a heart-to-heart with a stuffed ostrich and a tiny clown, an elevator-as-sardine-can skit from hell, and a pantomime to the Count Basie Orchestra’s Blues in Hoss, Flat which has inspired several hundred YouTube parodies. An obfuscation of the English language and the rules of comedy, The Errand Boy turns Hollywood on its head, gleefully shaking out every nickel and jelly bean and tooting a gleeful “screw you!” to moviegoers who just don’t get Jerry Lewis. Hardcore Three Stooges fans will recognize Joe Besser in a small supporting role as a studio projectionist. (JA)
92 min • Paramount Pictures • 35mm from NWCFS collections, courtesy of Jerry Lewis.
Preceded by: Outtakes from The Ladies Man – 35mm – 4 min
Introduced by Jerry Lewis historians Bob Furmanek and Ted Okuda

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