Neither/Nor: The Gloria Tapes

True/False Eve Kickoff Event: The Gloria Tapes (1980) and The Assistant (2019)
On Wednesday, March 4, True/False's Neither/Nor film series and the University of Missouri's Based on a True Story conference combine forces for a double feature of Lisa Steele's The Gloria Tapes (1980) and Kitty Green's The Assistant (2020). The night begins at 5:15pm with a Neither/Nor opening night reception sponsored by the Missouri Film Office, followed by a 6pm screening of The Gloria Tapes (the opening night selection of this year's Neither/Nor sidebar) and in-person Q&A with director Lisa SteeleThen, at 8:30pm, we will screen the acclaimed new film The Assistant (the opening night of the Based on a True Story conference), followed by an in-person Q&A with director Kitty Green, moderated by inaugural Neither/Nor curator Eric Hynes. Tickets for The Gloria Tapes and The Assistant will be available at the Ragtag box office beginning at noon on March 4.

Neither/Nor is True/False's seventh annual celebration of groundbreaking nonfiction cinema from the past. Its screenings, which are free and open to the public, take place True/False weekend. In previous editions of Neither/Nor, the festival has spotlighted the films of the Black Audio Film Collective (T/F 2018), the Makhmalbaf family (T/F 2014) and Pirjo Honkasalo (T/F 2019). This year's Neither/Nor sidebar looks at Missouri-born artists Lisa Steele, Christopher Harris, Mike Henderson, and Tom Palazzolo. To kick off the series, Steele -- a Kansas City native and Toronto-based video art pioneer -- will join us in person on March 1 for an opening night screening of three of her films, The Gloria Tapes (1980) and two shorts, "Talking Tongues" and "A Very Personal Story." This marks the first time any of Steele's work has been exhibited in Missouri. To celebrate Steele and all the Missouri artists featured in Neither/Nor, the Missouri Film Office is sponsoring a pre-film reception from 5:30-6:15pm, during which we will offer wine and beer.

When Steele was in her early 20s, she relocated from Kansas City to Toronto. Starting in 1974, she spent more than a decade working at Interval House, a women’s and children’s shelter. Drawing from her experiences at the shelter, she created composite characters for a series of films that explore their relationship with government systems. One of the most extraordinary films in this series is The Gloria Tapes (1980, 53 min.), which draws from soap opera convention as it offers a penetrating look at a woman (played by Steele) navigating the welfare system. Prior to The Gloria Tapes, we will be exhibiting two other films from Steele, "A Very Personal Story" (1974, 20 min.), in which she recounts a startling incident from her teenage years, and "Talking Tongues" (1982, 11 min.), in which she delivers a monologue as Beatrice Small, a woman who was abused by her husband.