"MTV: The Reagan Years," a rapid-fire look at the cable channel, includes music-video clips, promotional spots and an MTV short, "Joe's Apartment," where cockroaches interrupt a young man's date. Narrated by Peter Thomas.
An edited version of 1989's "Looking for Langston," which concerns sexual identity during the Harlem Renaissance and contains references to author Langston Hughes (1902-67). Filmed in black-and-white by Isaac Julien.
Films include "Joy Street," an animated interpretation of a woman's manic-depressive cycle; "Photocopy Cha Cha," a collage of photocopied images contorting to music. "Joy Street" directed by Suzan Pitt. "Photocopy Cha Cha" directed by Chel White.
"The Bet," about a gambler who jeopardizes the family delicatessen to clear a debt. Directed by Ted Demme. Also: "Pro and Con," an animated look at the prison system, as seen by a correction officer and an inmate.
Part 1 of the two-part "Seven Deadly Sins: An MTV News Special Report" examines "human compulsions," such as lust, pride and envy. Included: comments from Queen Latifah, Kirstie Alley, Ice-T and Sean Young.
In "Slowly, This," Asian-American David Mura and African-American Alexs Pate meditate on anger, cultural repression and survival tactics in America. Also: John Leguizamo recites "Latinisms"; Sekou Sundiata offers "Two Excerpts from Words in Your Face."
A 1993 chronicle of "Father's Daze"---former Baltimore Colt Bill Pellington's struggle with Alzheimer's disease---recounted by his son Mark. Clips of Pellington (who died in 1994) in gridiron days are juxtaposed with footage of his day-to-day treatment. Included: comments from Bill's wife Micki.
In "Suspicious," things get "weird, weird, weird, weird" for a wired woman (Janeane Garafalo) on a road trip. Written and directed by David Koepp. Also: animation from Jeff Scher ("Garden of Regrets") and Jan Svankmajer ("Dimensions of Dialogue").
"Air-O-Dynamic" features three film shorts, including a work directed by Matthew Modine about the impact of smoking on a man's life; and David Munro's "Bullethead," a black-and-white piece about a sled racer.
Dealing with terminal illness is the theme of the modern dance "Still Here," performed by the Bill T. Jones-Arnie Zane Dance Company. Jones directed the work, which juxtaposes comments of cancer and AIDS patients with visual images and music.
A film by artists Peter Fischli and David Weiss follows "The Way Things Go" in a curious physical chain reaction involving trash bags, tires, candles, foaming liquids, balloons and tea kettles. Filmed in 1987.
In "Touched," a bar is the setting for a dance piece that explores intimacy in relationships. Directed by David Hinton. Also: Janie Geisler's "The Red Book," an animated short that follows the trials of a woman suffering from amnesia.
"A Short Film Festival for Television": "Fugitive Love," about a woman coping with a failed relationship; "Sour Death Balls," about reactions to the taste of tart candy; "Angry," about a daughter who separates from her mother; "Television, the Drug of the Nation."
Dance works include 1989's "Untitled," created and performed by Bill T. Jones as a remembrance of his late partner, Arnie Zane; and 1991's "Contenders," a modern interpretation of athletic competition, by Susan Marshall. Also: excerpts from 1992's "Reckin' Shop."
"Bui Doi Life like Dust," a portrait of Vietnamese immigrant-turned-gang-member Ricky Phan. Included: comments from Phan, who discusses escaping from Vietnam and his gang affiliation; interviews with his parents.
A traveling peddler (Liam Mitchell) encounters a cowboy, a man who argues with himself, and free-spirited teenage girls in "The Salesman and Other Adventures." Written and directed by Hannah Weyer. Also: animation from "Beavis and Butt-head" creator Mike Judge.
In "A Sense of History," a pompous aristocrat (Jim Broadbent, who also scripted) describes life as the 23rd Earl of Leete, an existence characterized by murder, misjudgment---and efficient management. Directed by Mike Leigh.
Films by the Brothers Quay are featured. "Street of Crocodiles" animates stories by Bruno Schultz. Also: "Cabinet of Jan Svankmajer," the brothers' tribute to the animation pioneer. Both films originally aired on "Alive from Off Center."