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Charming for the Revolution

Pauline Boudry, Renate Lorenz
Germany 2009 / 10’

The film is charming, but it is still labor. The labor to engage in demanding what should already be ours.

Pauline Boudry, Renate Lorenz


With a wink to Jack Smith as well as to the history of queer and feminist demands, such as wages for housework!, the film recreates the ‘housewife’ as an ambiguous figure with an open future. Additional references extend from becoming-animal by Deleuze-Guattari, the Dandy of the 19th century who walked turtles on leashes to protest the clock of industrialisation (as per Walther Benjamin), to Pasolini’s acerbic critique of capitalism in The Hawks and the Sparrows.

Stefanie Schulte Strathaus

Jack Smith

the father of the Cinema of Transgression and the initiator of camp and thrash trends, has, since the 1950s, been creating anarchist films and performances inspired by Hollywood B movies. In his productions, transvestites and drag-queens radically manifested their sexuality. Smith made his movies purposefully violate all the principles of zero-style cinema. They inspired later generations of cinematic outcasts and experimenters. Smith was born in Ohio in 1932 and moved to New York in the 1950s. He began using film no longer independently but as a component of performances. His Midnight Performances often started as late as 2 a.m. and lasted several hours. In many of his LIVE FILM performances, Smith completely reedited the film material, integrating excerpts, slides, text, and music. After Smith's death as a result of AIDS in 1989, Jim Hoberman and Penny Arcade founded the "Plaster Foundation", which commissioned Jerry Tartaglia to restore his films.


1950–1966 Porządne istoty / Respectable Creatues (short)

1960 Przestymulowany / Overstimulated (short)

1962 Taśma klejąca / Scotch Tape (short)

1963 Płonące istoty / Flaming Creatures

1963 Normalna miłość / Normal Love

1963 Żółta sekwencja / The Yellow Sequence (short)

1967 Ziele z wyspy Technikolor / Reefers of the Technicolor Island / Jungle Island (short)

1967–1970 (1998) Byłam panem Yvonne De Carlo / I Was a Male Yvonne De Carlo (short)

1968 Bez prezydenta / No President

1969 Piosenka do wynajęcia / Song for Rent (short)

1970 Ujęcia bez tytułu / Untitled Film Rushes

1971 Północ w Plaster Foundation / Midnight at the Plaster Foundation (short)

1978 Sinbad z Bagdadu / Sinbad of Baghdad (short)

1979 Oszołomy / Hot Air Specialists (short)

Pauline Boudry

An artist related to Berlin and using film, video and installations. She deals with gender and post-colonial issues. She is also a co-founder of a queer musical group, Rhythm King and her Friends. For several years she has been collaborating with Renate Lorenz on films, exhibitions and installations.

Selected filmography

2004 Copy Me – I Want to Travel (co-dir.)

2006 Sometimes You Fight for the World, Sometimes You Fight for Yourself (co-dir.)

2009 Uwodząc dla rewolucji / Charming for the Revolution (co-dir.)

Renate Lorenz

A custodian, artist, and author of academic publications. She has lectured on Queer Studies at the Hamburg Academy; currently she works at the Free University of Berlin. She has published, among others, a book Copyshop – Practices of Art and Counterpublic (1993). For the last few years she has been working together with Pauline Boudry on artistic projects.

Selected filmography

2004 Copy Me – I Want to Travel (co-dir.)

2006 Sometimes You Fight for the World, Sometimes You Fight for Yourself (co-dir.)

2009 Uwodząc dla rewolucji / Charming for the Revolution (co-dir.)

Cast & Crew

director Pauline Boudry, Renate Lorenz
screenplay Pauline Boudry, Renate Lorenz
cinematography Bernadette Paaßen
editing Pauline Boudry, Renate Lorenz
music Karin Michalski, Rashad Becker
cast Werner Hirsch
producer Susanne Sachße
production Arsenal – Institut für Film und Videokunst
sales Arsenal – Institut für Film und Videokunst
language English
colouration colour