This month Black Cinema House @ BING celebrates Prince Rogers Nelson – the movie star, the film director and, of course the film score composer. Prince fronted the money for his film debut Purple Rain (1984) the blockbuster hit that catapulted him to superstardom and garnered him an Academy Award for Best Original Score. In Purple Rain and the films that followed, Prince crafts a screen presence that dances outrageously between sexy, comic, and tragic. In rock/pop/funk dramas and concert films, Prince alternately channels James Dean and Dorothy Dandridge, Melvin Van Peebles and Rudolph Valentino, Charlie Chaplin and Marlene Dietrich – bending conventions of film genre and performance, even for rock stars. Prince’s films feature a cavalcade of hairstyles, costumes, flawless makeup and stunning choreography, making his doe-eyed stares, virtuoso twirls and vulnerable baadasssss-itude pop off the screen. Prince the filmmaker performs visual interpretations of his music that are often surprising, and always unforgettable.
June 16 - Sign O’The Times (Prince and Albert Magnoli, 1987, 85 min)
Blazing concert film of Prince’s seminal double-album, featuring Sheena Easton, Sheila E., and yet another alter ego, Camille. Followed by conversation between BCH Curator Jacqueline Stewart (University of Chicago) and popular music/performance studies scholar Daphne Brooks (Yale University).
There will be only one screening at 6:00 this week, due to the ensuing discussion immediately after.