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American Indies, 1980-1989

January 23, 2020 – February 02, 2020

The Museum of Modern Art

The Museum of Modern Art, MoMA PS1, and the MoMA Stores in New York City have closed temporarily. 

The end of New Hollywood’s film-studio experimentation in the early 1980s ushered in anew era of free expression in independent film. This series explores American Independent cinema in the years before the Sundance Film Festival launched indie films into the mainstream. All films are from the US. 


Organized by Sean Egan, Senior Producer, Film Exhibitions and Projects and Brittany Shaw, Curatorial Assistant, Department of Film



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Bless Their Little Hearts. 1983. USA. Directed by Billy Woodberry. Courtesy Milestone Films

Blood Simple. 1984. USA. Directed by Joel Coen. Courtesy Photofest

Chan is Missing. 1982. USA. Directed by Wayne Wang. Courtesy Photofest

Polyester. 1981. USA. Directed by John Waters.  Courtesy Photofest

sex, lies, and videotape. 1989. USA. Directed by Steven Soderbergh. Courtesy Photofest

Smithereens. 1982. USA. Directed by Susan Seidelman.

Stranger Than Paradise. 1984. USA. Directed by Jim Jarmusch. Courtesy Photofest

Variety. 1983. USA. Directed by Bette Gordon. Courtesy Photofest