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Title: Reverend Billy & The Church of Stop Shopping
Director: Dietmar Post & Lucía Palacios
Duration: 60 min + 30 min interview with Bill Talen a.k.a. Reverend Billy
Year: 2002
Format: dvd / no regions / ntsc
Also available for streaming
Language: English
Subtitles: German & Spanish
Genre: Documentary
Topic: Performance arts, economy, politics
Reference: Reverend Billy
Nationality: Germany, Spain, US
Starring: Bill Talen and the Stop Shopping Gospel Choir
Rating: All ages
  • Press articles in the US (pdf)
  • Press articles in Spain (pdf)
  • Press articles in Germany (pdf)
  • More info

    SYNOPSIS

    The first documentary feature about the beginnings of Reverend Billy, a.k.a. Bill Talen.
    Filmmakers Dietmar Post and Lucía Palacios have accompanied the Reverend and his troupe over the period of an entire year. The film follows the Reverend's "shopping interventions/actions" into cultural dead zones within the island of Manhattan such as Starbucks, Disney and the New York University construction site at the Edgar Allan Poe House.

    Reverend Billy, a.k.a. Bill Talen, is an actor/performance artist and a leading figure in the anti-globalization movement. His work combines the forces of social and political change with the means of theater arts to counteract our media culture. His artistic and political work is influenced by various concepts of "street theater." His disruptions or "shopping interventions" in public spaces are in the tradition of the Living Theater, José Bové, Lenny Bruce, The Yippies. New York Times theater critic Jonathan Kalb calls his work "the most hilarious and pointed political theater in New York, something that has to be done in the risky environment of the street." The actions/performances inside and outside of Starbucks coffee shops and Disney stores often end with the Reverend being arrested. He calls it stepping into somebody's imagined box. The police call it illegal trespassing. The Reverend claims that social change always begins with civil disobedience and includes as his heroes the civil rights, peace and labor movements.