Click to Skip Ad
Closing in...
Indiegogo Video: 'Dear White People' Breaks Domestic Box Office Record for a Crowdfunded Film Indiegogo Video: 'Dear White People' Breaks Domestic Box Office Record for a Crowdfunded Film These Films & TV Series Are Leaving Netflix's Streaming Library at the End of This Month (January) These Films & TV Series Are Leaving Netflix's Streaming Library at the End of This Month (January) Say Hello to the Cast of the All-New, All-Female 'Ghostsbusters' movie Say Hello to the Cast of the All-New, All-Female 'Ghostsbusters' movie Review: Nuance-Deprived "Race" Movie 'Black or White' is Actually About White Frustration (Opens Friday) Review: Nuance-Deprived "Race" Movie 'Black or White' is Actually About White Frustration (Opens Friday) Trailer: Musical Take on the Gospel According to John the Apostle w/ a Black Cast (Harry Lennix, Chaka Khan, Mali Music, More) Trailer: Musical Take on the Gospel According to John the Apostle w/ a Black Cast (Harry Lennix, Chaka Khan, Mali Music, More) ABC Picks Up New Pilot From Shonda Rhimes' Shondaland Titled 'The Catch' ABC Picks Up New Pilot From Shonda Rhimes' Shondaland Titled 'The Catch' First 'Fantastic Four' Reboot Trailer Surfaces! Watch It Now! First 'Fantastic Four' Reboot Trailer Surfaces! Watch It Now! Review: 'Girlhood's' Strength Lies in Its Naturalistic Depiction of Young Female Friendship (Opens Friday) Review: 'Girlhood's' Strength Lies in Its Naturalistic Depiction of Young Female Friendship (Opens Friday) Ava DuVernay & David Oyelowo Make It a Trifecta as They Re-Team for Katrina-Set Love Story/Murder Mystery Ava DuVernay & David Oyelowo Make It a Trifecta as They Re-Team for Katrina-Set Love Story/Murder Mystery Review: Lifetime's 'With This Ring' - So What Did You Think of It? Review: Lifetime's 'With This Ring' - So What Did You Think of It? Review: Nzingha Stewart Guides Lifetime's 'With This Ring' (Premieres Saturday, January 24th) Review: Nzingha Stewart Guides Lifetime's 'With This Ring' (Premieres Saturday, January 24th) Here Are 10 Reasons Why Many of You Aren't Going to Movie Theaters Anymore, According to a New Study Here Are 10 Reasons Why Many of You Aren't Going to Movie Theaters Anymore, According to a New Study 'Empire' Breaks Fox TV’s 22 Year Old Ratings Record 'Empire' Breaks Fox TV’s 22 Year Old Ratings Record Alexandra Shipp Has been Cast as Storm in 'X-Men: Apocalypse' Alexandra Shipp Has been Cast as Storm in 'X-Men: Apocalypse' An Open Letter to My Sister, Ava DuVernay An Open Letter to My Sister, Ava DuVernay 'Supremacy' Director Deon Taylor Talks Race, Horror, and Working With Lela Rochon (LAFF Premiere) 'Supremacy' Director Deon Taylor Talks Race, Horror, and Working With Lela Rochon (LAFF Premiere) Macy Gray, Bryshere Y. Gray (aka Yazz The Greatest) Will Have An Affair In Lee Daniels' 'Empire' Macy Gray, Bryshere Y. Gray (aka Yazz The Greatest) Will Have An Affair In Lee Daniels' 'Empire' It's A 'Hustle & Flow' Reunion! Taraji P. Henson Joins Terrence Howard In Lee Daniels' 'Empire' It's A 'Hustle & Flow' Reunion! Taraji P. Henson Joins Terrence Howard In Lee Daniels' 'Empire' Netflix Explains Why It Doesn't Always Have That Film Or TV Show You Really Want To See (Video) Netflix Explains Why It Doesn't Always Have That Film Or TV Show You Really Want To See (Video) Tichina Arnold Says She Talked To Martin Lawrence About Doing A 'Martin' Movie... Tichina Arnold Says She Talked To Martin Lawrence About Doing A 'Martin' Movie...

Watch Ed Bland’s Avant-Garde National US Film Registry-Preserved 'The Cry Of Jazz' Feat. Sun Ra

Photo of Tambay A. Obenson By Tambay A. Obenson | Shadow and Act December 3, 2013 at 4:21PM

Watch Now: Ed Bland’s Avant-Garde National US Film Registry-Preserved 'The Cry Of Jazz'
0
Cry Of Jazz

One of the 25 films to be inducted for preservation in the 2010 National Film Registry of the Library of Congress (Spike Lee's Malcolm X was on the short list that year), is the experimental film titled The Cry Of Jazz - a fascinating 34-minute critical analysis of Jazz music, directed by Ed Bland (an African American), his only film.

He went on to a career as a composer, arranger, and producer for the likes of Dizzy Gillespie, and on films like A Raisin In The Sun, Ganja And Hess, and The Cool World.

Shot on 16mm black-and-white, on really no budget, with a volunteer cast and crew, the film is essentially a thesis on the structural correlation between black life in America and jazz music.

Indeed, Bland wrote a book on the subject matter, titled, The Fruits of the Death of Jazz, and the characters in the film serve as mouthpieces for his declarations, which must have been startling at the time the film was made, in 1959.

In watching the film, I immediately thought of another title that would have been just as alarming in its day - John Cassavetes' Shadows (also made in 1959 by the way). Both films were at the forefront of the then American cinema avant-garde; although Bland's film doesn't seem to have enjoyed the same kind of repertory status as Cassavetes' seminal work.

At the center of The Cry Of Jazz is a debate between black intellectuals and white jazz fans in some unknown living space, on the history of jazz as the story of the "fantastic ingenuity of the Negro in America."

Music is provided by Sun Ra and his Arkestra, who are seen and heard performing while in their prime.

I found the entire piece on YouTube, which I embedded below, split into 4 parts, so watch it now:

Part 1:

Part 2:

Part 3:

Part 4:

This article is related to: Ed Bland


Shadow & ActNewsletter