RAP/Clark Conference Film Series: The L.A. Rebellion—To Sleep With Anger

RAP/Clark Conference Film Series: The L.A. Rebellion—To Sleep With Anger

Thursday, September 21, 2023

6:00 PM–7:45 PM
(See the event location map)
Get directions to the Clark
To Sleep with Anger (1990; 1 hour 42 minutes) is the third feature directed by Charles Burnett. It is a slow-burning masterwork of the early 1990s and a singular piece of American mythmaking. In a towering performance, Danny Glover plays the enigmatic southern drifter Harry, a devilish charmer who turns up out of the blue on the South Central Los Angeles doorstep of his old friends. In short order, Harry’s presence seems to cast a chaotic spell on what appeared to be a peaceful household, exposing smoldering tensions between parents and children, tradition and change, and virtue and temptation. Interweaving evocative strains of gospel and blues with rich, poetic-realist images, To Sleep with Anger is a sublimely stirring film from an autonomous artistic sensibility, a portrait of family resilience steeped in the traditions of African American mysticism and folklore.

In celebration and anticipation of the Clark’s Research and Academic Program (RAP) 2023 Conference, “The Fetish A(r)t Work: African Objects in the Making of European Art History, 1500–1900,” the Clark presents a series of films from the Los Angeles School of Black Filmmakers, better known as the L.A. Rebellion film movement. Starting in the late 1960s in Los Angeles, especially in and around the University of California (UCLA) Film School, a group of Black filmmakers began exploring alternatives to the film industry, eschewing Hollywood patterns and embracing international influences, ethnographic study, and African history and mythology.

Free. To Sleep with Anger takes place of the previously scheduled Killer of Sheep.

Image: To Sleep with Anger, Charles Burnett, 1990