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Directed by Marlon T. Riggs, Tongues Untied polarised critics with its unapologetic portrayal of black gay experience in America

Directed by Marlon T. Riggs, Tongues Untied polarised critics with its unapologetic portrayal of black gay experience in America

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After its1989 release and subsequent screening on public television, Tongues Untied polarised critics with its unapologetic portrayal of black gay experience in America.

Part documentary, part performance, it was described as ‘the film we have been waiting for’ by critic Cary Alan Johnson and vilified as a misuse of public funds by right-wing presidential hopeful Pat Buchanan. Such divided opinions were testament to the film’s lasting impact as a powerful depiction of the ongoing black liberation movement, twinned with devastation of the AIDS crisis.

30 years on, the poetry of Marlon T. Riggs himself, as well as performances from Essex Hemphill and Brian Freeman, comprise a unique record of a critical historical moment with fierce intelligence, virtuosic rhythm and courageous hope that still stuns today.

After its1989 release and subsequent screening on public television, Tongues Untied polarised critics with its unapologetic portrayal of black gay experience in America.

Part documentary, part performance, it was described as ‘the film we have been waiting for’ by critic Cary Alan Johnson and vilified as a misuse of public funds by right-wing presidential hopeful Pat Buchanan. Such divided opinions were testament to the film’s lasting impact as a powerful depiction of the ongoing black liberation movement, twinned with devastation of the AIDS crisis.

30 years on, the poetry of Marlon T. Riggs himself, as well as performances from Essex Hemphill and Brian Freeman, comprise a unique record of a critical historical moment with fierce intelligence, virtuosic rhythm and courageous hope that still stuns today.

Extras

  • Presented in High Definition and Standard Definition
  • Anthem (1991, 9 mins): an experimental music video portraying a vibrant, exciting and defiant community of black gay men
  • Affirmations (1990, 10 mins): featuring the poetry of Essex Hemphill, this is a beautiful short film exploring the dreams, desires and fantasies of black gay men
  • Non, Je ne regrette rien (1992, 38 mins): a timely and illuminating documentary examining the impact of HIV and AIDS. There’s fierce and fascinating insight at every turn, and a classic example of Rigg’s formally distinctive style
  • **FIRST PRESSING ONLY** Fully illustrated booklet with new writing on Tongues Untied and the accompanying short films and full film credits
  • Other extras TBC

Additional Info

Additional Info

SKU 5035673013731
Catalogue Number BFIB1373
Product contents DVD and Blu-ray editions
Year 1989
Director Marlon T Riggs
Format DVD, Blu-Ray
Publisher(s) BFI
Countries USA
Colour Colour
Subtitles English
Language(s) English
Running time 112mins
DVD region 2
Blu-ray region B
Certificate 15

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