Now Available on 16mm: New Prints of James Broughton’s Hermes Bird and High Kukus, and Broughton & Joel Singers’ The Gardener of Eden

Posted July 16th, 2015 in New Acquisitions, New Films, News / Events

New, beautiful prints of Hermes Bird, High Kukus and The Gardener of Eden are now available for loan from Canyon Cinema!

High Kukus (1973 | 3 minutes | COLOR | SOUND)

“A visualization of the Zen dictum of ‘sitting quietly, doing nothing,’ HIGH KUKUS uses a single beautiful visual image while it delights with a poetic soundtrack composed of 14 gems of Broughton’s wit and wonder.” – Freude Bartlett

“A High Kuku is, of course, a cuckoo haiku. In inventing this form James Broughton has concocted zany verses which are ‘high’ in the sense that they are often metaphysical and are keenly aware of the metacomedy of things…. In the contemplation of lofty themes most people are serious, though not always sincere. Broughton, however, is always sincere but hardly ever serious. Indeed, seriousness is a questionable virtue; it is gravity rather than levity, and it was that devout Catholic, G.K. Chesterton, who maintained that the angels fly because they take themselves lightly. And, in company with the angels, Broughton laughs with God rather than at him.” – Alan Watts

For more information and to rent this film, click here!

Hermes Bird (1979 | 11 minutes | COLOR | SOUND)

“This is the secret that will not stay hidden/this secret that is no secret / Here is the wonder of the god in man / Here is the dangling flower of Eros.”

So begins the poetry sequence on the soundtrack of this very intimate film.

HERMES BIRD is a celebration and an apotheosis of the masculine miracle: the transformative powers of the phallus, revealed as a phenomenon of glowing beauty and wonder.

Because the film occurs in extreme slow motion one has the opportunity to witness for the first time in cinema the delicate pulsations and tremors and changes of the penis as it grows erect, until at last, reaching outward and upward, it takes flight toward its climax. The filmmaker-poet has written a group of lyrical poems for the sound of the film. They are spoken by the poet, and they sing praises for the radiant masculine mystery of the “sacred firebird,” the “holy acrobat shaped for surprise” which is every man’s pride and, hopefully, his joy.

For more information and to rent this title, click here!

The Gardener of Eden (1981 | 8.5 minutes | COLOR | SOUND)

A film by James Broughton and Joel Singer

Filmed on the paradise island of Sri Lanka, this intense poetic work celebrates the eternal dance of nature’s sexuality, and sings of the lost Eden we all search for but do not expect to find.

In the midst of his fertile garden, while he awaits Adam’s return, God tries to keep his eye on all the flowering exuberance he has seeded. The film is written and narrated by James Broughton, and photographed by Joel Singer. The music is performed on twin conch shells, and the central actor is in real life the most famous horticulturalist in Ceylon.

“… the meshing of ancient philosophy and modern technology in a song of the mysteries of protoplasm!” – Lenore Rinder

“An ecstatic masterpiece!” – Stan Brakhage

For more information and to rent this title, click here!