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Flaming Creatures and Sensuous Pleasures


16mm print. With Francis Francine, Sheila Bick, Mario Montez, Joel Markman. Deemed obscene by the State of New York, Smith’s revolutionary and elusive masterpiece Flaming Creatures was shot on outdated black-and-white film stock, reproducing some of Hollywood’s golden days on a Lower East Side rooftop. Smith gives his cross-dressed actors the freedom to preen, dance, and playfully inhabit the rapturous and exotic fantasies of Hollywood cinema.

Preceded by:

The Most Wonderful Fans Of The World (De Mooiste Waaiers Ter Wereld)

Dir. Unknown. 1927. 12 mins. Netherlands/France. With Pépa Bonafé. This sumptuously stenciled short was filmed on the stage of a Paris music hall and includes such Orientalist numbers as “In the Temple of the Fakirs” and “The Chinese Fan.”

Free with Museum admission.