Flaming Creatures | Movie Critic's Choice | Chicago Reader

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Flaming Creatures


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Flaming Creatures

Forget everything you might have heard about the late Jack Smith's legendary bisexual, orgiastic, superlow-budget, experimental 1963 masterpiece--a lot more is going on here, artistically and otherwise, than either Jonas Mekas or Susan Sontag has ever suggested. This jubilant, celebratory 45-minute film holds up amazingly well; despite its notoriety and censorship during the 60s, it's more than just an orgy of nude and seminude bodies--male, female, and transvestite. The camera and even the cheap, hothouse decor participate in the joyful free-for-all, suggesting both the privacy of a Josef von Sternberg wet dream and the collective force of a delirious apocalypse. But the simplest way to describe it is to call it a vision. Theatre Building, 1225 W. Belmont, Thursday, August 14, 6:00, 773-327-5252. --Jonathan Rosenbaum

Art accompanying story in printed newspaper (not available in this archive): film still.

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