13-24 nov 2024
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Pull My Daisy

Pull My Daisy

Robert Frank, Alfred Leslie
United States
1959
28 min
n.a.
Focus: 16 Worlds on 16
Synopsis

New York, early morning: it’s going to be a strange day in this cluttered loft on the Lower East Side, home to railroad brakeman Milo and his wife, a painter. Their dinner guest, a bishop, has only just arrived when a bunch of beat poets turn up. In fact it is Allen Ginsberg and some friends, all of whom appear as themselves in Robert Frank’s directorial debut, loosely based on a play by Jack Kerouac.

They are soon bombarding the bishop with philosophical wisecracks and questions about the sanctity of baseball. Everything we hear actually comes from the mouth of Jack Kerouac himself—he improvised the voice-over to accompany the film, which was recorded without direct sound.

Kerouac’s wry and ironic retelling blends with the bebop soundtrack, and once he gets going, he even treats us to some freewheeling beat poetry. The bishop’s mother seats herself at the organ and the poets join in with swinging jazz sounds. Confusion increasingly reigns supreme in this Beat Generation cult classic.

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Credits
28 min
black and white
16mm
Spoken languages: English
Director
    Robert Frank,
    Alfred Leslie
    Robert Frank,
    Alfred Leslie
Production
    Walter Gutman for G-String Enterprises,
    Robert Frank for G-String Enterpises
    Walter Gutman for G-String Enterprises,
    Robert Frank for G-String Enterpises
Cinematography
    Robert Frank
    Robert Frank
Editing
    Leon Prochnik,
    Robert Frank,
    Alfred Leslie
    Leon Prochnik,
    Robert Frank,
    Alfred Leslie
Music
    David Amram
    David Amram
Screenplay
    Jack Kerouac
    Jack Kerouac
Screening copy
    Museum of Fine Arts Houston
    Museum of Fine Arts Houston

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More from the program section Focus: 16 Worlds on 16
Reflecting on 100 years of 16mm since Kodak introduced this film format, this focus program explores how the history of documentary film has been influenced as a result. The selection includes classics from cinema verité such as Daguerréotypes by Agnès Varda and Salesman by the Maysels, as well as examples of films that wrap their criticism of authorities in metaphors due to censorship, as in "First Case, Second Case" where Abbas Kiarostami examines revolutionary thought
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