Legendary director Penelope Spheeris is coming to The Frida!
In celebration of the new 2K restorations of her acclaimed documentary trilogy The Decline of Western Civilization, Ms. Spheeris will be joining us in person for two special double-feature screenings on Friday, March 23 and Saturday, March 24 – it all starts March 23rd at 7:30pm with 1981’s The Decline of Western Civilization, followed by 1998’s The Decline of Western Civilization Part III!
The original Decline of Western Civilization, which was selected for preservation in 2016 by the National Film Preservation Board, surveys the late-70`s/early-80`s Los Angeles punk scene. Including concert footage and interviews with bands such as X, Black Flag, Fear, Germs, Catholic Discipline, and Alice Bag Band, The Decline of Western Civilization was an immediate indie underground hit that is now recognized as a landmark of the documentary genre, and the definitive time capsule of the birth and explosion of L.A. punk.
Screening will be followed by 1998`s The Decline of Western Civilization Part III, which explores Los Angeles’ late-90’s “gutter punks” scene – homeless teenagers who preferred anarchy and chaos to organized society. Many of the film’s subjects come from abusive households, and had developed alcohol and drug problems as they lived on the streets, panhandled, squatted in abandoned apartment buildings, and fought off skinheads to survive. The film, which also includes performances by several notable Los Angeles punk bands, received awards at the Sundance and Chicago Underground Film Festivals.
Join us in welcoming director/producer Penelope Spheeris in person! Penelope will be introducing the evening, and joining us for a Q&A between screenings. She will also be selling copies of her films and other materials in the lobby, and donating a portion of all proceeds to local homeless shelters.
Perhaps best known for directing the hit 1992 film Wayne’s World, Penelope Spheeris’ range of works – from music videos to underground cult films like Suburbia to Hollywood hits like The Little Rascals and Black Sheep – all share the commonality of being celebrations of youth culture, the marginalized, and the fabulous underdogs who find their crew and do it their way. After studying biological sciences in Orange County at UCI, Penelope majored in film and has a Master of Fine Arts degree in Theater Arts from UCLA – earned while putting herself though school as a waitress at Denny’s and IHOP. We are honored to welcome this trailblazing and award-winning pioneer to The Frida Cinema.