at the WSU Campus Activities Center Theater, 1845 Fairmount.

Sponsored by the Student Activities Council's Cinema and Video Committee.

$3 for the general public, $2 for WSU faculty/staff, and free to WSU students.

 movie poster from 'Child's Play,' a 1988 film about a murderous doll named Chucky

Friday, October 24 ~ midnight

Saturday, October 25 ~ 9pm

Child's Play

(1988, USA) The infamous Chucky skyrocketed to cult status in this clever thriller about an innocent looking doll inhabited by a killer's bloodthirsty soul. Rated R.



at the Wichita Center for the Arts, 9112 East Central.

$5 for the general public, $4 for Center and Ulrich Museum members (be sure to bring your membership card!)


Sunday, October 26 ~ 2pm & 8pm

The Devil Doll

(1936, USA)  Directed by Tod Browning, perpetrator of the bone-chilling cult classic Freaks, The Devil Doll marks perhaps the first time that a doll was brought to life as a character in a mainstream film.  Its intent?  Murder, and although the special effects are creaky by today's standards, the film remains "creepy.  Some bits are fairly certain to return in nightmares" (Pauline Kael).  Lionel Barrymore plays the fugitive from Devil's Island who masquerades as a kindly old lady and sells his diabolical creations to the people who put him away.  "Very entertaining" – Leonard Maltin.


Friday, October 31 ~ 8pm

Sunday, November 2 ~ 2pm

Faust with short films Street of Crocodiles and The Epic of Gilgamesh

Faust (1994, Czech Republic)  Jan Svankmajer is film's most intractable surrealist and Faust is his one-of-a-kind masterpiece.  Drawing on every available source from Goethe to Gounod, Svankmajer combines live action and animation to tell the story of a man who exchanges his soul for god-like wisdom.  Svankmajer's technique is both grubby and breathtaking, including puppet animation (many characters here are, literally, wooden), claymation, and stop-motion animation.  Faust will show with two short films by the brothers Quay, whose work is directly influenced by Svankmajer:  Street of Crocodiles, a work derived from the writings of Bruno Schulz in which a man happens upon a nighttime world of living dolls within a closed-up lecture hall, and The Epic of Gilgamesh (sometimes known as This Unnameable Little Broom), a vaguely erotic piece in which a one-eyed doll on a tricycle investigates his mysterious quarters with the assistance of a birdman.


Saturday, November 1 ~ 2pm & 8pm

Attack of the Dolls:  An Anthology

This program culls the scariest and funniest of the menacing doll sequences from a trio of longer films.  First up is the "Ventriloquist's Dummy" segment from the 1945 horror classic Dead of Night;  in this short film-within-a-film, Michael Redgrave plays a ventriloquist whose wooden friend exerts rather too much influence in his master's waking life.  Next we find Karen Black, recipient of an unusually active African doll, in the final episode of 1975's campy made-for-TV classic Trilogy of Terror.  Finally, in homage to Ms. Black's horrific performance in Trilogy, a contemporary gay man is pursued around his apartment by a distinctly adult doll in the outrageous cult classic Karen Black Like Me (1998).  Please note that this program contains adult content.


Friday, November 7 ~ 8pm

Sunday, November 9 ~ 2pm

The Puppetry of Jane Geiser

Experimental puppeteer Jane Geiser creates complex short films using antique doll-like figurines, which she brings to life within cryptic narratives of failure and loss.  Simultaneously creating and deconstructing illusions, her remarkably charming films have played to enthusiastic crowds at the New York Film Festival, the Rotterdam International Film Festival, and Cornell University.  With this selection at the Center, her films make their Wichita debut.


Saturday, November 8 ~ 2pm & 8pm

Barbie Nation:  An Unauthorized Tour

(1998, USA)  This adventurous documentary from director Susan Stern takes a long, off-the-wall look at all things Barbie:  her history, her multitudes (there are an estimated one billion of these dolls on Earth), her fan base, and the breast obsession that brought her to life in the first place.  The film includes an interview with Barbie creator Ruth Handler, who was first inspired by a German doll named "Lily," and traces Barbie's transformation from innocent plaything to feminist target, cult item, counterculture icon, and more.  "If you have any love, hate, or mixed feelings for the little pink-clad career woman, you'll dig this even-handed documentary" – Film Threat.

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