Free Owsley Sunday Film: Documentary as Formal Truth

4X3 FilmKlub

In the early 2000s, with the transition to digital formats, thousands of media departments deaccessioned their 16mm film libraries. Films were either given away, or literally dumped in landfills, believing that the format was dead. As a student at Pittsburgh Filmmakers, Ryan Daly worked on the behalf of the school salvaging eighty-thousand 16mm prints from Allegheny County media department. The task proved too expensive for the school and the films were offered up to Ryan Daly who established Cinemanonymous Film Archive in 2003.

Specializing in rare and often unseen amateur, experimental, industrial, sponsored and educational films, Cinemanonymous Film Archive is a vast collection of 16mm film prints. Drawing from this collection, Ryan Daly has organized several film programs under the moniker 4×3 FilmKlub since that time. Presenting a variety of thematic programs–all screening in the original 16mm format–4×3 FilmKlub is showcase of rarely-screened short films.

The themes range from dance films, screen tests, animated oddities, corporate comedies, first time filmmakers, silent films, commercial advertisements, educational films, experimental films, home movies, cartoons, and newsreels. These rare, forgotten, forbidden, and amazing short 16mm films are a must-see-to-believe cinematic experience with each program introduced by Daly.

Documentary as Formal Truth
Various Directors

Sunday, March 18, 12:30 pm


Scottish documentary filmmaker John Grierson’s defined documentary as the “creative treatment of actuality.” This program of documentary films expands the notion of actuality by experimenting with the formal conventions of filmmaking. From poetic realism to romanticism from city symphony to travelogue, the five films in this program demonstrate that actuality doesn’t exist on its own but is created by observers. 1921-1949, running time: 84 minutes.


  1. Symphony of a City – Arne Sucksdorff (9min) 1949
  2. Coal Face – Alberto Cavalcanti (11 min) 1935
  3. A Propos De Nice – Jean Vigo (23 min) 1930
  4. Manhatta – Paul Strand (10 min) 1921
  5. The River – Pare Lorentz (31 min) 1939