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The Renaissance of Mata Ortiz - The Story of Mata Ortiz Ceramics
The Emmy-winning story of how an American adventurer and a brilliant, self-taught Mexican artist transformed a dying desert village into a home for world-class art. When anthropologist Spencer MacCallum walked into a second-hand store in Deming, New Mexico, in 1976 and bought three pieces of pottery, he had no idea…
J'ai ete au bal [I Went to the Dance]
The definitive film, by Les Blank and Chris Strachwitz, on the history of the toe-tapping, foot-stomping music of French Southwest Louisiana. The film includes many Cajun and Zydeco greats, featuring Michael Doucet and BeauSoleil, Clifton Chenier, Marc and Ann Savoy, D.L. Menard, and many others.
Always for Pleasure
Les Blank's celebration of the spirit and social traditions of New Orleans, featuring Mardi Gras and St. Patrick's Day celebrations. It is an intense insider's portrait of New Orleans' street celebrations and the unique cultural gumbo of Second-line parades, Mardi Gras, and the Jazz Fest. The film features live music…
Short Films of Les Blank II
Five short films from Les Blank Films.
Oh My God! It's Harrod Blank
An obsessively-made documentary, filmed over 16 years, exploring the creative life and adventures of the eccentric artist and entrepreneur Harrod Blank. From his youth growing up in the woods with chickens and working as a camera assistant for his father- the venerable film-maker Les Blank- to the creation of his…
Maestro: King of the Cowboy Artists
This documentary from Les Blank follows the indomitable Gerald "The Maestro" Gaxiola, who turned to a life of prolific art making after years as an aircraft mechanic, traveling salesman, and body builder.
Short Films of Les Blank I
Five short films from Les Blank Films.
Hot Pepper
This is an energetic portrait of the Grammy-winning Creole musician Clifton Chenier, a.k.a. the King of Zydeco; Blank beautifully captures his music's propulsive, foot-tapping joy.
Ziveli! Medicine for the Heart
This little known Les Blank gem is a portrait of the Serbian-American communities of California and Chicago. At the time of the California Gold Rush, the first Serbian immigrants arrived from the rugged Balkan Peninsula to settle in the New World. Against great obstacles, Serbian religion and identity had survived…
How to Smell a Rose - A Visit with Ricky Leacock at His Farm in Normandy
HOW TO SMELL A ROSE documents Les Blank's visit with the legendary co-founder of Direct Cinema, Richard Leacock (1921-2011), in 2000. At his farm in Normandy, France, Blank, and co-director Gina Leibrecht, recorded conversations with Leacock about his life, his work, and his other passion: cooking! In the early sixties,…
A Poem is a Naked Person
Les Blank considered this free-form feature documentary about beloved singer-songwriter Leon Russell, filmed between 1972 and 1974, to be one of his greatest accomplishments. Yet it has not been released until now. Hired by Russell to film him at his recording studio in northeast Oklahoma, Blank ended up constructing a…
Screening Room with Les Blank
Beginning with The Blues Accordin' to Lightnin' Hopkins in 1969, Les Blank has become known for his films about indigenous southern music and various other topics. He has received numerous major awards including the British Academy Award for Burden of Dreams, about Werner Herzog and the making of Fitzcarraldo, top…