This is Now: Film & Video After Punk 18

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From the archive

This film was last shown on 27 April 2016


Video Killed the Radio Star

Showing as part of Art Sheffield


John Smith, Echo and the Bunnymen: Shine So Hard, 1981, 32 min

The Miners’ Campaign Tapes: The Lie Machine, 1984, 16 min

With an introduction by Nicole Yip, Special Project Curator at LUX.

The early 1980s saw an explosion in alternative and independent moving image production. Clubbers, art students, new romantics and members of the post-punk scene used cheap domestic technologies to subvert the mainstream media and to find new modes of expression. THIS IS NOW explores this unique moment that gave rise to a new generation of artists inspired by the DIY ethos of punk, defying conventional ideas about how film should be made and who should make them.

Featuring titles by Isaac Julien, John Maybury, The Neo-Naturists, Grayson Perry, Cordelia Swann, Holly Warburton, Jill Westwood, Cerith Wyn Evans and artists from the highly influential Scratch Video movement, amongst many others, the majority of these works have been digitally remastered by the BFI National Archive from Super 8 and 16mm films that have been out of circulation for over thirty years.

This programme, ‘Video Killed the Radio Star’, looks at early independent video releases, which were the revolutionary, DIY antidote to a television system that was only just gearing up to a fourth channel. They bypassed censorship and provided a platform to the marginalised and unsanctioned. This eclectic selection includes a very rare John Smith title and a potent assault on the media representation of the miners’ strikes of 1984–85.

THIS IS NOW is presented in partnership with LUX and the BFI National Archive. The UK tour has been developed with the support of the BFI, awarding funds from The National Lottery.bfi film forever

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120 mins

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