Starring: Jack Smith, Jerry Sims, Gib Taylor, Bill Carpenter, Cecilia Swan, Laurie Taylor, Bob Fleischner, Reese Haire, Jim Enterline, and Ken Jacobs.
"It's a stimulating, labyrinthine experience provided by a master of the American avant-garde and an historical artifact that is nevertheless piercingly contemporary." -- Doug Cummings, FILM JOURNEY
"With a running time of 6 hours and 42 minutes, ''Star Spangled to Death'' is the magnum opus of the independent filmmaker Ken Jacobs. Begun in 1957 as a backyard bohemian romp starring the avant-garde legend Jack Smith -- an amazing proto-drag performer who later directed his own underground classic, ''Flaming Creatures'' -- the project grew over the years to incorporate huge chunks of appropriated material, including, for example, the entirety of Richard M. Nixon's 1952 Checkers speech and what seems like most of an early 30's documentary on what was then known as ''darkest Africa." -- Dave Kehr, NEW YORK TIMES
"Finished—or perhaps abandoned—after nearly half a century of work, Ken Jacobs's monumental, monstrous Star Spangled to Death receives its first ever theatrical run this week at Anthology Film Archives. The movie is a six-hour assemblage of found audio-visual material ranging from political campaign films to animated cartoons to children's phonograph records, interwoven with gloriously eccentric original footage shot mainly on the streets (and in the dumps) of late-'50s New York." -- Jim Hoberman, VILLAGE VOICE