Born in Flames

  • 79'
  • USA
  • 1983

This fantasy of female rebellion is situated in a New York plagued by racism and gender inequity and tightly controlled by a government that labels any dissent as counterrevolutionary. The film focuses on the intersecting stories of four women's organizations: pirate stations Radio Ragazza and Phoenix Radio, the armed coalition the Women's Army, and the establishmentarian Socialist Youth Review. When the black radical founder of the Woman's Army is mysteriously killed, a coalition of women – across all lines of race, class and sexual preference – emerges to blow the System apart.

This pseudo-science-fiction film uses somewhat guerrilla documentary shooting techniques, includes found footage from international news and is set to music by Red Krayola and the lesbian rock group The Bloods. Inspired by Godard, Borden worked in a dialectical way, responding to the footage she shot by 'writing' on the editing table and creating a story in which each group is faithful to its own language.

Preserved by Anthology Film Archives with restoration funding from the Hollywood Foreign Press Association and The Film Foundation.

Director
Lizzie Borden
Country of production
USA
Production Year
1983
Festival Edition
IFFR 2020
Length
79'
Medium
DCP
Languages
English, French
Producer
Lizzie Borden
Sales
Anthology Film Archives
Cinematography
Ed Bowes, Al Santana
Editor
Lizzie Borden
Cast
Honey, Adele Bertei, Jean Satterfield, Florynce Kennedy, Becky Johnston, Pat Murphy, Kathryn Bigelow