Combining the tropes of 60s art-house cinema with the primitive punk aesthetics of the Cinema of Transgression, Jon Moritsugu has been making movies far outside the mainstream for over twenty-five years. While his work has screened at venues as high profile as the Sundance, Berlin and Toronto Film Festivals and even public television, he continually shirks convention and classification. After making his name with a series of hand-made 16mm features, he’s recently embraced video with a fervor and a freeness to which every young filmmaker should be paying attention. Moritsugu’s world is overflowing with eye-popping production design, eardrum-destroying rock ‘n’ roll, gross-outs aplenty and deadpan one-liners you’ll be quoting for weeks.
We’re proud to present the first complete retrospective of Jon’s work, including every feature and short he’s produced to date, along with the New York premiere of his newest movie, PIG DEATH MACHINE. Also in the line-up are his impossible-to-find shorts like DER ELVIS, SLEAZY RIDER and LITTLE DEBBIE, SNACK WHORE OF NEW YORK CITY! Plus two uber-rare 16mm screenings of his masterpiece, MOD FUCK EXPLOSION!
Like all true artists, Jon Moritsugu thrives under the limits of his budgets- producing an oeuvre of punk classics and establishing him as DIY icon.
Dir: Jon Moritsugu, 1990.
70 min. USA.
SUNDAY, JUNE 2ND – 7:30PM
ONE NIGHT ONLY!
Preceded by the shorts DER ELVIS and LITTLE DEBBIE SNACK WHORE OF NEW YORK CITY
In the tradition of Beyond The Valley Of The Dolls and Ladies and Gentlemen, The Fabulous Stains, Moritsugu’s very first feature is the story of a female rock trio – sponsored by a sinister meat corporation. Our narrator is the bass player, who falls in love with a real pig’s head that thinks out loud. See why Roger Ebert walked out after 7 minutes!
“Spikey satire on modern pop culture and ‘star is born’ movies.” – Los Angeles Times
Dir: Jon Moritsugu, 1993.
97 min. USA.
SUNDAY, JUNE 2ND – 10PM
ONE NIGHT ONLY!
This simultaneous homage-to and takedown-of the French New Wave, follows the perpetual ennui of a small group of art school students. While indulging his usual stylistic subversions, Moritsugu crafts a film whose closest cousin might be Jean Eustache’s iconic The Mother and The Whore.
“The French New Wave goes to hell. HIPPY PORN is about as adventuresome as feature filmmaking gets… bleakly beautiful.” – Los Angeles Times
Dir: Jon Moritsugu, 1993
54 min. (Release Version) / 71 min. (Rough Cut Version)
MONDAY, JUNE 3RD – 7:30PM (Release Version)
WEDNESDAY, JUNE 5TH – 10PM (Rough Cut Version)
Preceded by the shorts SLEAZY RIDER and CRACK
A wholesome portrait of the perfect Japanese immigrant family – well, except for the scummy drug addict son who disappoints his parents. But who is stealing grandpa’s morphine? Who is secretly gay for skinheads? And who is being blackmailed with a sex tape?
“FATHER KNOWS BEST meets PINK FLAMINGOS… a post-punk soap opera about an Asian-American family that single-handedly shatters the clean-cut, hard-working image of the model minority.” – New York Daily News
MOD FUCK EXPLOSION
Dir: Jon Moritsugu, 1994.
76 min. USA.
SATURDAY, JUNE 1ST – 10PM (on 16mm!)
WEDNESDAY, JUNE 5TH – 7:30PM (on 16mm!)
In this teen angst epic, London (Amy Davis) longs for love and leather jackets. Meanwhile, vicious Mods wage a turf war against a gang of lip-synched Asian bikers.
“A dynamic punk odyssey of a pair of innocent teens adrift in a violent urban world; Moritsugu unleashes a barrage of powerful images and hard-driving music.” – Los Angeles Times
Dir: Jon Moritsugu, 1997.
73 min. USA.
MONDAY, JUNE 3RD – 10PM
ONE NIGHT ONLY!
Preceded by the short MOMMY, MOMMY, WHERE’S MY BRAIN?
Three misguided social climbers scrounge for stardom! A closeted tennis star, a talentless fashion designer, an animal activist with an imaginary friend – will any of them make it?
“Luridly florid… like a porno flick with the fucking parts cut out.” – Village Voice
Dir: Jon Moritsugu, 2002.
79 min. USA.
TUESDAY, JUNE 4TH – 7:30PM
THURSDAY, JUNE 6TH – 10PM
Preceded by a collection of music videos by Jon Moritsugu
Moritsugu’s first foray into video continues his devotion to fast music, cheap cameras and Amy Davis. A pretentious underground filmmaker (TV on the Radio’s Kyp Malone) struggles with his masterpiece while a skuzzy punkoid chick (Davis) tries to keep her band from fading into obscurity.
“SCUMROCK is as fast and energetic as it is funny. Moritsugu is a true visionary.” – Los Angeles Times
PIG DEATH MACHINE
Dir: Jon Moritsugu & Amy Davis, 2013.
84 min. USA.
SATURDAY, JUNE 1ST – 7:30PM
TUESDAY, JUNE 4TH – 10PM
THURSDAY, JUNE 6TH – 7:30PM
A brainless bimbo is transformed into a total genius after eating rotten meat. Meanwhile, a misanthropic punk botanist babe gains the power to talk to plants. Moritsugu’s first film in a decade is a triumphant return, complete with a hilarious film-within-a-film, and glittery bacon animation!
“Everyone who has half a brain and even a milligram of taste knows that Jon Moritsugu is a LIVING FUCKING UNDERGROUND MOVIE GOD” – 2003 New York Underground Film Festival