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Casket Cinema examines the role of women in advertising

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In the world of advertising, women’s bodies are transformed into beer bottles, are photoshopped to be ultra thin, and are presented without blemishes, wrinkles, or even pores.

For the past 40 years, Jean Kilbourne has been blasting the insidious sexism that lurks throughout the advertisement industry. Her lectures eventually became the inspiration for the seminal Killing Us Softly. Since its 1979 release, the film has been updated a number of times. The most recently release, 2010's Killing Us Softly IV, reflects on the ways women are currently subjugated in the media. 

Tonight, Casket Cinema will screen the latest film as part of its ongoing series, which focuses on documentary filmmaking with a politically left bent. Now in its eighth year, Casket Cinema generally hosts events once a month.

The activist angle to Killing Us Softly is in line with many of the films that Casket Cinema presents. The idea is to come and watch a film, talk with experts, and then go off and make good changes in the world.

“It’s a hopeful evening,” says filmmaker and event co-founder Mark Wojahn.  “We’re a hippy microcinema. The chairs don’t match, and it’s all donation based. But I want people to show up regardless.” 

When Wojahn and Wilbur Ince started the series eight years ago, they mostly focused on war and peace themes. (The country was embroiled in Iraq and Afghanistan wars at the time.) Eventually, they branched out into other topics, including films about the environment, sustainability, politics, biking, food, and beer. 

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After screenings, guests are typically invited to talk about the topics presented. For tonight's event, special guests will include Pilar Gerasimo, the founding editor of Experience Life magazine; Antonette Trussoni of A&E Casting agency; and Abby Stavig, senior broadcast producer at Olson advertising. 

IF YOU GO:

Killing Us Softly IV

$5-$10 suggested donation

Doors at 7:30 p.m.; screening at 8 p.m.

Thursday, January 14

Northwestern Casket Building

681 17th Ave. NE, #145, Minneapolis

BYOB. Click here for more info.