Anthology Film Archives, NYC, Dec 2023 theatrical premiere (The Apocalyptic is the Mother of All Christian Theology)
The Apocalyptic is the Mother of All Christian Theology — a psychedelic portrait of the founding theorist of Christianity — made the New York Times Most Anticipated Films of the Holiday Season: "...Jim Finn examines the ideas of the apostle Paul using oddball cultural detritus, including board games and sponsored films." The film won Critic's Jury Prize at the Pesaro Festival of New Cinema in Italy and will have a theatrical premiere at Anthology Film Archives in December along with a program curated my Jim Finn called Jesus Christ! at the Movies.
“Holy reconstructions of the sons of God, Jim Finn! Our favorite political atomizer gets holy in his new documentary crusade and decides to tell the story of Paul, the apostle who, the cheap internet would say, was “the most ardent propagandist of Christianism.” Finn, alongside artists Linda Mary Montano and Usama Alshaibi, goes all scissorhands using 16mm institutional shorts, board game commercials, cassette tapes, trashy animations and, of course, period performances of not-so-doubtful quality—a rosary of archive footage that evolves in the map of pop culture, its praying and its saints. Psychedelic and ferocious, Finn extracts waste from the 20th century and, Doc Brown-style, uses it to make miracles based on science (that of film) that stare into the future." — BAFICI 2023 (Buenos Aires Festival of Independent Film)
The story of Paul the Apostle’s life, ideology and influence is told by piecing together 20th Century 16mm and cassette propaganda, board games, animation, reenactments, Roman Empire doom metal and covers of Catholic liturgical music. The gentle Paul themes with flute, acoustic guitar and mellotron contrasts with the Demonic Roman Empire themes of electric guitar, drums and synth. Performance artist Linda Montano and Usama Alshaibi portray Paul on his journey. The film tries to capture the disturbing reaction Paul and his letters had in the early days of Christianity. The use of live action, animation, found footage and original music was a way to recover his biography from the brains of 20th Century humans so that in some perhaps misguided Utopian impulse, we can build something new out of it for the future.
Jim Finn: firstname.lastname@example.org