Portrait of Jason (1967)
Average Rating: 8.6/10
Reviews Counted: 11
Fresh: 11 | Rotten: 0
No consensus yet.
Average Rating: 8/10
Critic Reviews: 7
Fresh: 7 | Rotten: 0
No consensus yet.
Average Rating: 4.1/5
User Ratings: 262
Portrait of Jason is a disturbing but fascinating 90-minute exercise in the Avant Garde (earlier prints ran 105 minutes). Experimental filmmaker Shirley Clarke, produced, edited, directed and provided voiceover for this landmark film. Essentially, the picture consists of an interview with "Jason," a young black homosexual and male prostitute. Despite her kaleidoscope style, Clarke takes great pains not to editorialize: Jason is Jason, like it or not. While mainstream critics expressed nausea and
Oct 2, 1967 Wide
Milestone Film & Video - Official Site
Whether Jason is laughing or crying, he holds you rapt with tales that conceal as much as they reveal.
Serves as a sideways time capsule, creating a blurry snapshot of an Afro-camp subculture during the era of Christopher Street bar raids and burn-baby-burn rioting.
[Portrait of Jason] says more about race, class, and sexuality than just about any movie before or since.
Portrait of Jason is a curious and fascinating example of cinema veritÚ, all the ramifications of which cannot be immediately known.
Jason himself certainly provides enough artifice to keep any audience engrossed.
Shirley Clarke counters Jason's queen-bitch attitude by reminding us with vocal and technological interjections that this is a performance, and that aesthetic judgments have been made while recording it.
By the end of the long night's shoot, Clarke knew she had captured one of the most involving, uncompromising and revelatory human documents in the history of cinema.
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