Area Premiere August 23–26!
Buy Tickets Brattle passes accepted
(2013) dir Steve Brown, Jessie Deeter [90 min]
Each year, tens of thousands of people from around the globe gather in a dusty windswept Nevada desert to build a temporary city, collaborating on large-scale art and partying for a week before burning a giant effigy in a ritual frenzy. This is Burning Man, a legendary event that is notoriously hard to explain or document. Rooted in principles of self-expression, self-reliance and community effort, Burning Man has grown famous for stirring ordinary people to shed their nine-to-five existence and act on their dreams.
This in-depth look at the annual art-happening/rave/desert retreat was filmed at a critical juncture for the venerable event. Facing ever-larger crowds (topping 60,000 people in 2012) and shifting priorities, the organizers struggle to maintain their integrity – both in each other’s eyes and in the public’s – amid a box office crisis that left many of their core supporters and artists without tickets. Given unprecedented access to the backstage discussions and complicated planning of both organizers and participants, the filmmakers create a portrait of an event that, at its best, is a life-changing experience for many.
“Since we can’t all attend Burning Man, we can be thankful for “Spark,” which is probably the next best thing.” —Andy Webster, The New York Times