American Studies
American Studies

AMS Film Series: Cockfighter

Thu, April 14, 2011 | ART 1.120

7:00 PM - 9:00 PM

We would like to invite you to the third screening in the American Studies Film Series. This screening will start April 14th at 7 p.m. in ART 1.120. The movie being shown is Monte Hellman's 1974 cult fave, Cockfighter. The screening will begin with a short introduction by AMS grad student (and Film Series committee member) John Cline, who has edited and contributed to books on exploitation cinema, with discussion to follow. Cockfighter pits two character actor greats against each other: Warren Oates and Harry Dean Stanton.  Oates plays the title character, a "professional" trainer of cockfighting birds on the underground circuit in the American South; Stanton portrays his nemesis.  Based on a Charles Willeford novel written prior to the success of his Hoke Moseley character in Miami Blues, Cockfighter was Monte Hellman's follow-up to the legendary Two-Lane Blacktop, also starring Warren Oates.  (And James Taylor, if you haven't seen it.  Yes, that James Taylor.)  This movie has been banned in UK due to un-faked scenes of bird death.  Ironically, Ed Begley Jr. has a cameo.  PETA and Humane Society members and vegetarians are consequently encouraged to attend.  But seriously, Cockfighter is as fascinating an exploration of white Southern masculinity as any of Burt Reynolds' '70s work.

This second screening continues a semester-long look into "masculinity and violence." The final film in this series is Jamaa Fanaka's 1979 Penitentiary, showing April 28th. We hope that this film series offers the opportunity for undergraduates, graduate students, and faculty to interact. Both RoboCop and Straw Dogs have had successful attendances, which we'd like to continue with Cockfighter.  (Special thanks to Andy Jones for his excellent introduction to Straw Dogs.) Hope to see some more of you at the show.

Please, no children, but bring your friends!

Sponsored by: Department of American Studies

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