Houston filmmaker Greg Carter introduces the screening on February 29

An unforgettable late-1960s counterculture masterpiece, Putney Swope remains a vital provocation on race, pop culture, and America. Putney Swope, the only African American exec at his ad firm, is unexpectedly elected its president and turns the industry on its ear through a series of outrageous, taboo-busting TV commercials (strewn throughout the film like comedic landmines.) As Swope becomes the generalissimo of Madison Avenue, director Robert Downey Sr. takes no prisoners and skewers the entire political spectrum.

• “The commercials ... are absolutely brilliant, and the sheer gonzo tenacity of the whole enterprise makes it all work.” —Movie Metropolis

• “Funny, sophomoric, brilliant, obscene, disjointed, marvelous, unintelligible, and relevant. If anybody tries to improve it, they should be sentenced.” —Vincent Canby, New York Times

• “[Downey’s] one of our great American directors.” —filmmaker Paul Thomas Anderson

• READ Robert Downey Sr. Talks Putney Swope —Village Voice

• WATCH Robert Downey Sr. and Paul Thomas Anderson on Putney Swope 

• READ & WATCH Revisiting Putney Swope with Robert Downey Sr. —Vice

About the Speaker
Houston native Greg Carter has produced more than 30 feature films, most recently Lap Dance, Lucky Girl, My B.F.F., and One Crazy Christmas. A graduate of Texas A&M, he studied film at Rice University’s School of Visual and Dramatic Arts. He was recognized along with director Richard Linklater with an institutional grant from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences for programs at the MFAH. Carter served on the board of directors of the Southwest Alternate Media Project (SWAMP) and is an alumnus of the SXSW Film Festival. 

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Tickets for Putney Swope
Saturday, February 29, 2020 7 p.m.

Looking for Film Buff or Member tickets?

If you are a current Film Buff or Museum Member, please sign in to access your free and discounted tickets.

Price Qty. Total
Adult $9.00
Members pay only $7.00
Senior (65+) $7.00
Sub Total:

The new 50th anniversary 4K digital restoration is by the Academy Film Archive and the Film Foundation, with funding provided by the George Lucas Family Foundation.

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Robert Downey, Sr.
Running Time
84 minutes
Digital, Color