Maybe you’re deeply interested in radical feminist politics, or maybe you just want to see lesbians with assault rifles. Either way, D.C. Radical Space has you covered with a screening of Born In Flames at The Black Cat tomorrow. The 1983 indie flick takes place in an imagined future (through the inimitable lens of the 1980s) ten years after a democratic socialist revolution. Lesbian gangs take to the streets after facing joblessness and discrimination in government job placement programs. The organizers communicate through pirate radio, meeting in secret while the government tries to keep tabs on their underground activities.
The pseudo-documentary presents direct action—in this case, using violence and forcibly interrupting the mainstream media—as a viable means for social change. The protagonists take aim at those in power and do their best to counter government-sponsored falsehoods spread through the national news. It’s an odd film with a major anti-authoritarian bent. Even the soundtrack is subversive; the titular track, “Born In Flames,” was a single by noisy, avant-garage pioneers The Red Krayola. Strangely enough, the film also marks the first appearance of actor Eric Bogosian, who would later become a mainstay on Law & Order. The movie boasts enough serious social rebellion to keep both the leftist academic and the hardcore punk satisfied.
Born in Flames screens Tuesday, May 18th at the Black Cat.