The interrupted screening comes from two basic premises: 1) radical films alone don’t necessarily encourage action beyond the movie theatre; 2) the screening practices prevalent in the exhibition contexts where radical film culture is lived are not necessarily radical. Often following a rigid, hierarchical model, these events generally feature visible experts providing knowledge, introducing the screening, leading debates and Q&A after the films, usually watched in their entirety. Bringing together ideas from the debates on the relocation and re-relocation of cinema, inattentive engagements, and the links between anxiety, militancy, and consciousness-raising, Elena has elaborated and applied a screening model based on the exhibition practices associated with Third Cinema in the Latin American context, which involves participants talking about films during breaks within, not after the screening, in a small group.
The aim of this workshop is to introduce the basic ideas behind the model and, after participating in an interrupted screening, discuss its potential applications in the exhibition contexts in which participants operate as curators or audience. The idea is to establish a network through which the practice of the interrupted screening can develop further.
As part of the workshop we’re going to do an interrupted screening of Ousmane Sembène’s La noire de… (Black Girl 1966). The film tells the story of Diouana (Thérèse M’Bisine Diop), a young Senegalese woman eager to find a better life and who takes a job as a governess for a bourgeois French family. Mistreated by her employers, Diouana’s hopes turn to disillusionment and she descends into a state of isolation and despair.
Elena Boschi is an independent scholar and film curator based in Genoa, Italy. After working at various universities in the north west of England as a lecturer and being a union rep for a few years, she realized that UK Higher Education wasn’t sustainable anymore and decided to move on, looking for a new space for critical thinking and practice in a post-academic life. Her earlier research projects primarily focused on the role of popular music in the representation of sexuality, gender, and class in Italian, Spanish, and British cinema. She has also published on visible playback technology in film and on the audiovisual style in the films of Wes Anderson (both co-authored with Tim McNelis), and she was co-editor of a special issue of the Journal of British Cinema and Television on Gender, Ageing, and Sexuality in British Cinema After Thatcher with Christine Geraghty. Elena’s more recent research on alternative screening practices has informed her curation of interrupted screenings, in which participants discuss films in small groups during scheduled breaks rather than just at the end to promote a radical film experience. She has curated screenings in England, Scotland, and Italy, working primarily with film festivals, charities, and occupied spaces.