Who's Crazy?

It doesn’t get more underground than this 1966 feature-length free-jazz freakout, which stars members of the legendary avant-garde Living Theatre group and features an ecstatic score by the late, great Ornette Coleman. Whispered about for decades, Who’s Crazy? finally re-emerged last year thanks to the dedicated sleuthing of an Ornette obsessive, who tracked the sole print in the director’s shed. Making its West Coast debut after 50 years – and not a second too late – the mostly-improvised film offers a heavy dose of mid-60s collective psychosis, unleashing a busload of lunatic hepcats on a sleepy Belgian countryside for a sustained bout of unstructured merrymaking. As their neo-dadaist hijinks escalate to the fever pitch of pagan ritual, Coleman matches their frenzy, laying down an emancipatory racket on saxophone, trumpet and violin. Like the best work of Warhol, Jack Smith or the Kuchars, it’s as much a happening as a film, with filmmaker Thomas White (al)chemically summoning spontaneous lunacy from his inspired collaborators.

Dir. Thomas White, 1966, DCP, 73 min.

Watch the trailer!