Shirley Clarke was the most important woman director of the post-war era; creating art, controversy and acclaim throughout her career. Her jazz-infused films won international awards including an Oscar® nomination and a win for Best Documentary. Since her death in 1997, her films have fallen out of distribution and her work has been rarely seen. The preservation and release of Shirley Clarke’s films will be an important contribution to the history of women in film and a joy to audiences around the world.
Clarke’s first feature film, THE CONNECTION (1961), won the Critics’ Prize at the 1961 Cannes Film Festival but was banned in the United States the next two years. Taking Jack Gelber’s brilliant but controversial Beat play, Clarke’s exuberant blending of cinematography, choreography, music and editing created one of the great jazz films of all time. An apartment of drug addicts wait for their connection while a filmmaker tries to create a Cinéma Vérité documentary about them. Starring Warren Finnerty and the great Jackie McLean!
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