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Directed by Robert Altman

United States 1970 105 mins.

Following his enormously successful M*A*S*H, Brewster McCloud, with its deliberately faltering beginning and wandering narrative line, took a determinedly different direction. It tells the story of a boy (Bud Cort) who yearns to fly. Hiding out in the Houston Astrodome under the mentorship of a bird woman (Sally Kellerman), he builds a pair of life-size wings. Brewster’s world is disrupted, however, by the arrival of a detective investigating the mystery of several guano-covered corpses. Altman parodies such films as The Birds, Bullitt, and The Wizard of Oz (the Wicked Witch herself, Margaret Hamilton, stars in a minor role), while exploring a young boy’s dreams of freedom and flight in the sociopolitical bounds of Nixon’s America.

The Northwest Film Center recognizes and honors the Indigenous peoples of this region on whose ancestral lands the museum now stands. These include the Willamette Tumwater, Clackamas, Kathlemet, Molalla, Multnomah and Watlala Chinook Peoples and the Tualatin Kalapuya who today are part of the Confederated Tribes of Grand Ronde, and many other Native communities who made their homes along the Columbia River. We also want to recognize that Portland today is a community of many diverse Native peoples who continue to live and work here. We respectfully acknowledge and honor all Indigenous communities—past, present, future—and are grateful for their ongoing and vibrant presence.