The cycle of documentary film screenings “Common People” initiated by Kaunas Artists’ House (KAH) and the platform “Kitas Kinas” is back for the new season.

This year, as we continue the exchange programme between Kaunas Artists’ House and Kirtimai Cultural Centre, we will invite you to watch and discuss documentaries not only at Kaunas Artists’ House, but also in Vilnius – at Kirtimai Cultural Centre (KCC).

The cycle will be opened with the film Recorder: The Marion Stokes Project (dir. Matt Wolf, 2019) at KAH yard on June 17th 9 p.m. The documentary accurately responds to the context of recent world events. The screening of this film in Vilnius in the yard of Kirtimai Culture Center will take place on June 18th: Common People: “Recorder: The Marion Stokes Project” | Vilnius

The film will be presented in both cities by “angry cinema critics” Ilona Vitkauskaitė and Santa Lingevičiūtė.

A mystery in the form of a time capsule, the film delves into the strange life of a radical Communist activist who became a fabulously wealthy recluse archivist. Marion’s work was crazy but it was also genius, and she would pay a profound price for dedicating her life to this visionary and maddening project.

Marion Stokes was secretly recording American television twenty-four hours a day for thirty years. It started in 1979 with the Iranian Hostage Crisis at the dawn of the twenty-four hour news cycle. It ended on December 14, 2012 while the Sandy Hook massacre played on television as Marion passed away. In between, Marion recorded on 70,000 VHS tapes, capturing revolutions, lies,
wars, triumphs, catastrophes, bloopers, talk shows, and commercials that tell us who we were, and show how television shaped the world of today.

Before the era of “fake news,” Marion was fighting to protect the truth by archiving everything that was said and shown on television. The public didn’t know it, but the networks were disposing their archives for decades into the trashcan of history. Remarkably, Marion saved it, and now the Internet Archive will digitize her tapes and we’ll be able to search them online for free.

Matt Wolf is a filmmaker in New York. His critically acclaimed and award-winning films have played widely in festivals and have been distributed internationally in theaters and on television. Matt’s first feature documentary Wild Combination is about the avant-garde cellist and disco producer Arthur Russell. His second feature Teenage is about early youth culture and the birth of teenagers. Most recently, Matt premiered Recorder: The Marion Stokes Project at the 2019 Tribeca Film Festival.

Dir. Matt Wolf
Documentary, USA, 2019, English, 87 min.

Tickets and discounts: tickets cost 3 EUR (2 EUR concessions – schoolchildren, students, seniors). Tickets can be purchased on the door and at “Tiketa” sales points in person and online.

The „Common People“ screening series aims to discuss not only the content of documentary films, but also the whole notion of documentary cinema. The series adresses questions of ethics, directorial decisions. To film or not to film? When does a director cross the line of closeness with their subject? Should documentary cinema reflect ‘reality’ or the vision of its creator? These questions and others are raised and discussed looking at films who maintain a close look at people telling their own stories: sensitive, creative, eccentric and based somewhere in the margins.

The project is curated by Karolis Žukas (Kitas Kinas) and Edvinas Grinkevičius (Kaunas Artists’ House).

Visual identity: Eglė Simonavičiūtė.

The project is financed by the Lithuanian Film Center, organised by Kaunas Artists’ House. Partners: platform “Kitas Kinas”, Kirtimai Culture Center, Kaunas Deaf Rehabilitation Centre, Vilnius Queer Festival “Kreivės”.