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UBU - Sydney Underground Movies 1965 - 1970

Year: 2011, 188 mins
Code: AT-UbuPt1
ISBN: 978-1-921882-79-1

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Ubu Films was formed in Sydney in mid-1965 by Albie Thoms, David Perry, Aggy Read and John Clark - the group adopted the name of Alfred Jarry’s main character (Pére Ubu) from his legendary 1896 satirical play Ubu Roi.Emerging from the restrictive conservatism of Australia’s post-war period, Sydney’s vibrant underground culture would provide the seeding ground for creative experiment - it was within this environment that four like-minded individuals would form one of this country’s most unique cultural partnerships.

This digital collection of selected 16mm films made by the Ubu Films group presents a unique opportunity to reconsider the wealth of invention that signifies one of the most important cultural periods in Australia. The Ubu Films group would take advantage of hiring vacant theatres, halls and cinemas for the purpose of screening new independent works. In a sense, Ubu’s film screenings became a form of social celebration amongst a young radical community which the films emanated from.
The films within this collection exemplify a period of unbridled creative experimentation that flourished during Ubu’s brief five year period preceding institutional control of the arts in Australia.
The three disc set begins appropriately with an introduction by Phillip Noyce – the internationally renowned film director who as a school student, was inspired by Ubu to take up filmmaking and became the first Manager of the Sydney Filmmakers Coop in 1970.

What the films stand for, what they represent, is almost as important as the works themselves - Ubu’s history is rich with an interconnecting tapestry .... Peter Mudie about UBU films - August 2011

Part 1:
(1966) 21 minutes
Man and His World
(1966) 50 seconds.
(1966) 5 minutes.
Halftone (1966) 3.5 minutes.
Rita and Dundi (1966)
The Film (1966) 12 minutes.
Bluto (1967) 5 minutes.

Part 2:
The Tribulations of Mr. Dupont Nomore (1967) 10 minutes.
Transition (1967) 1.5 minutes.
Super Block High (1967) 2 minutes.
Moon Virility (1967) 2 minutes.
Bolero (1967) 14 minutes.
Boobs a Lot (1968) 3 minutes.
Mad Mesh (1968) 3 minutes.
David Perry (1968) 4 minutes.
Tobias Icarus Age 4 (1968) 4 minutes.
A Sketch on Abigayl’s Belly (1968) 2 minutes.
Infinity Girl (1968) 4.5 minutes.
Album (1970) 5.5 minutes.

Part 3:
(1969) 85 minutes

Albie Thoms, David Perry, Aggy Read and John Clark formed UBU in Sydney in 1965.

The many associates of Ubu Films during this period is an impressive list of individuals from a wide variety of creative disciplines – amongst many others these include the artists Garry Shead, Martin Sharp, John Firth-Smith, Keith Looby and Bruce Petty; film industry luminaries Phil Noyce, Bruce Beresford, Matt Carroll, Yoram Gross, Paul Cox , David Stiven and Peter Weir; experimental film artists Paul Winkler, Dusan Marek, Nigel Buesst and the Cantrills; musicians John Sangster, Mick Liber and the bands Id, Taman Shud and Tully; the radical theatrical group Human Body and director Jim Sharman.
The members of Ubu (and their associates) are quite simply national treasures.

Read more about Albie Thoms:

"It is poetic that Thoms’ most controversial film would conclude this collection – it is one of the most demanding films I have encountered, yet I also recognise it as one of the most brilliant films to have been made in this country. Marinetti is a complex construction that proposes an entirely fresh form of cinema, discarding the tradition of the past, embracing the instinctive nature of innovation and intuitive development. This is a wonderfully coll ection, carefully re-mastered and presented to retain the spirit of Ubu Films within the selected films." Peter Mudie August 2011

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