Abandon Normal Devices (AND) Festival kicks off today, offering five days of ‘anarchy of the imagination’, starting with its show-stopping piece: the apocalyptic Empire Drive-In. Brooklyn artists Todd Chandler and Jeff Stark have created a full-scale working drive-in movie theatre made from wrecked cars, symbolic of the decline of the once thriving American drive-in industry. Originally built in San Jose, this manifestation is the first time Empire Drive-In has been seen in Europe. Entry is free during the day, when attendees can roam and explore from car to car and experience sonic environments featuring work from New Yorkers Roberto Carlos Lang and Sxip Shirey, and others. By night, experience a specially programmed series of film screenings and live soundtracks, including Empire Shorts, a collection of short films reflecting contemporary ruin. Wednesday 29 August’s opening night entertainment starts with a collection of short films with improvised live soundtracks from local musicians, followed by short documentary film After the Factory before the main event: Paul Verhoeven’s sci-fi classic Robocop. On Thursday Brent Green narrates his hand-built film Gravity Was Everywhere Back Then, with live soundtrack and FX. Finally and fittingly, Friday sees George Miller’s post-apocalyptic motor-heavy action film Mad Max II: Road Warrior, accompanied by performances from Manchester performers Tranarchy. We can think of no finer way to watch one of Mel Gibson’s finer hours than atop a wrecked car – this one in particular looks a treat.

Wed 29 Aug – Fri 31 Aug, QPark, off Whitworth Street West, M15 6AW, various times and prices. www.andfestival.org.uk

Wed 29 Aug - Fri 31 Aug
Carole Keating
Published on:
Wed 29 Aug 2012