The Lacey Rituals: Films by Bruce Lacey and Friends DVD
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Directed by Richard Lester, Peter Sellers, Bruce Lacey
Produced in 2012
Main Language - English
Countries & Regions - British Film
Classic Comedy • Classic Science Fiction & Fantasy Movies • Contemporary Comedy • Contemporary Cult Film • Contemporary British Film • Comedy • Science Fiction & Fantasy • Classic British Film • Contemporary British Film
Although he has exerted considerable influence on postwar British culture, Bruce Lacey has remained off the radar. This collection is a fitting tribute to his talent, writes Anthony Nield.
Bruce Lacey has had quite the roster of friends over the years. There have been members of the Goons and the Beatles, Henry’s Cat creator Bob Godfrey, British cinema’s enfant terrible Ken Russell, glamour photographer George Harrison Marks, the folk rock band Fairport Convention and, more recently, the Turner Prize-winning artist Jeremy Deller. This new collection of 29 films from the BFI brings together many of their collaborations - comedies (including Richard Lester's Running, Jumping & Standing Still Film), documentaries, animation, avant-garde films - taking us from the early 1950s right up to the present day.
Lacey has embraced the alternative throughout his life and been involved with numerous counter-cultural movements down the decades. He’s had strong ties to the post-war jazz scene, to the absurdist comedy movement, to performance art and to New Age mysticism. He’s also had a sideline in the creation of mechanical art-pieces and installations, some of which have served as ‘special effects’ in his movies. All of this - and plenty more besides - finds its way into The Lacey Rituals, a truly fitting tribute to one of the UK’s most idiosyncratic figures.
Anthony Nield on 18th June 2012
Author of 9 reviews
Who links The Beatles, Ken Russell, Peter Cook, Richard Lester, Fairport Convention, The Goons, The Bonzo Dog Doo-Dah Band, cartoonist Bob Godfrey (Roobarb and Custard) and Turner Prize winning artist Jeremy Deller? The answer: Mr Bruce Lacey. And if Bruce Lacey himself has somehow remained ‘off our radar’ in recent times, it wasn’t always like that...
A legendary figure on the British counter-cultural art scene during the 1960s, Lacey has enjoyed five decades of defining cultural moments, collaborating with all manner of filmmakers, musicians and artists. Lacey was known for his unpredictable humour and strong political views; his wide-ranging and idiosyncratic art practice saw him construct all manner of mechanical, sci-fi devices and robotic beings as well as exhibiting films and interactive environments in the era’s groundbreaking, underground art-happenings scene. A regular on TV and in film, he was the flute-playing gardener in Help! and a mad scientist in Smashing Time.
Although Bruce Lacey exerted considerable influence on post-War culture, bafflingly, much of his work has remained obscure and little seen in recent years. The Lacey Rituals: Films by Bruce Lacey (and friends) is an indispensible 2-DVD collection which finally brings together many of Lacey’s rarely-seen films for the very first time. It includes The Running, Jumping & Standing Still Film (Richard Lester, 1960), The Lacey Rituals (1973), a delightful and experimental home movie featuring Lacey’s children and much more.
Contents - Early Films: Head in Shadow (1951), Agib and Agab (1953), The Running, Jumping & Standing Still Film (1960), Battle of New Orleans (1960), Everybody’s Nobody (1960), Uncle’s Tea Party (1962), One Man Band (1965).
Human Behavious Films: Kissing Film (1967), How to Have a Bath (1971), The Lacey Rituals (1973), Double Exposure (1975).
Performances and Documentation: The Flying Alberts (1965), The Flying Alberts (Bruce Lacey edit) (1965), Humanoid Race (1965), Universal Integrator (1971), Laceys at Home (1972), British Landing on the Moon (1973), Outside in (extract) (1973), R.O.S.A B.O.S.O.M (1996), If I Had a Talking Picture of You (2002)
Performance Inserts: Heads, Bodies and Legs (1973), Stella Chase (1974).
Earth Rituals and Later Films: Awakening of the Earth Goddess, Rougham (1982), Castlerigg (c. 1981), Wales Stone Circles (c. 1981), Breaking Away to Come Together (1984), The Re-Awakening of My Ancestral Spirits (1987).
Length: 365 mins
Cat No: BFIVD942
Format: DVD Colour
- The Bruce Lacey Experience (Jeremy Deller & Nick Abrahams, 2012).