BADLANDS: Art Gallery Of NSW Delivers A Fistful Of Western Thrills, Drama, Swordplay Action And More This Spring
The Art Gallery of New South Wales is kicking off 2023 with Badlands, a new film series currently curating a list of nineteen titles from now through March and ranging from Westerns and crime dramas of the 50s, 60s and 70s to classic wuxia and chambara; from auteurs like Sergio Leone and John Ford to King Hu and Akira Kurosawa.
Peppering things up a bit is the inclusion of Jim Jarmusch whose modern-day cult classic, Ghost Dog: The Way Of The Samurai, is screening in March, followed by actress and filmmaker Maria Tran’s psych action thriller, Echo 8, which just won Best Feature at this year’s Tokyo Film Awards, and is presently slated to screen for the Art Gallery NSW in April during its festival circulation this year.
More on the programme:
Badlands tours cinema’s outlaw zones. We meet Marilyn Monroe in the Nevada Desert, Bruce Lee on a Hong Kong island fortress and Forest Whitaker restaging the codes of 16th-century Japan on the rooftops of New Jersey. These films celebrate unruly characters, boundary riders and rule breakers. From the bandit capital of Sardinia to Brazil’s arid backcountry, laws and conventions are renegotiated, power redistributed and competing forces struggle to reimpose order or blast apart in spectacular showdowns.
A spaghetti western remakes a Japanese classic; a Senegalese drama quotes Bonnie and Clyde. Overleaping genres and geographical borders, these films cite and rework each other. There are homages and telling subversions. Drawing together revisionist westerns, samurai films and wuxia (martial arts) cinema, via Blaxploitation and New Hollywood, Badlands assembles a wayward canon.
The series screens in association with the exhibition Outlaw.
Badlands will rev things up this week starting with tomorrow’s presentation of John Ford’s The Searchers, followed by Kurosawa’s Seven Samurai and his Toshiro Mifune classic, Yojimbo, Clint Eastwood’s A Fistful Of Dollars and John Huston’s The Misfits. You can catch up on the rest of the titles screening from February through April at the official website.
Native New Yorker. Lover of all things pizza, chocolate, pets, and good friends. Karaoke hero. Left of center. Survivor. Fond supporter of cult, obscure and independent cinema - especially fond of Asian movies and global action cinema. Author of the bi-weekly Hit List. Founder and editor of Film Combat Syndicate. Still, very much, only human.