Loading Events
  • This event has passed.

Jul 22, 2018 at 7:30 pm

The Drunkard’s Lament

Screening to be followed by Branwell Brontë’s Role-Playing Game

Jim Finn will introduce the event with a brief history of the Brontë family, the film and the game. Then we’ll screen the experimental musical The Drunkard’s Lament, an early cinema musical adaptation of Wuthering Heights written by Branwell—the tubercular, alcoholic and opium-addicted brother of Emily Brontë. Following the film, we will ask for volunteer game players for a 45-minute role-playing game with rotating audience members. In the same way that the film is Branwell’s early cinema dream of Wuthering Heights, the game is Branwell’s altered reality role-playing game of his sister’s novel.


The Drunkard's Lament

40 min., 2018

Branwell is the only Brontë sibling to survive childhood who did not become a best-selling author. His alcoholism and constant illnesses hid his tuberculosis so that he infected his sisters Emily and Anne. The three siblings died within a year of each other. Branwell’s failed artistic career became intertwined with the blame he shouldered for stunting English literature by killing his sisters. His friends posthumously rallied to defend his honor and legacy by promoting a conspiracy theory that Branwell was the true author of Wuthering Heights. Branwell, however, left quite a bit of evidence that while Emily was finishing and trying to publish her novel, Branwell was writing all his friends asking for whiskey and gin.

Branwell’s own letters serve as an entry point for the film. The handmade 16mm emulsion was created at Negativland Film Labs in Queens. The music was written and recorded in Detroit especially for the film. The game was inspired by the fast and simple role-playing games Jim Finn runs with his children. It is modeled loosely on Philippe Tromeur’s Wuthering Heights Role-Playing Game and the Dungeon Crawl Classics character funnel system, which kills off characters fast and often.

This is the U.S. premiere of the film and the world premiere of the role-playing game. The Drunkard’s Lament has screened at BAFICI in Argentina and FidMarseille in France.

Branwell Brontë’s Role-Playing Game

45 min., 2018

A live-officiated game following the screening.

85 min

“Steeped in the obsolete language of revolutionary art,” The New York Times said Jim Finn’s films “often play like unearthed artifacts from an alternate universe.” His award-winning movies have been called “Utopian comedies” and “trompe l’oeil films” and according to Variety “upturn notions of documentary and fiction, propaganda thought, reality and restaging, and even what an ‘experimental film’ actually is.” Born in St. Louis in 1968, he teaches at Pratt Institute in Brooklyn.

Twitter @jimfinn
FB: https://www.facebook.com/jim.finn.3979
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/jimfinn2000/

+ Get Tickets


The numbers below include tickets for this event already in your cart. Clicking "Get Tickets" will allow you to edit any existing attendee information as well as change ticket quantities.
Tickets are no longer available


Jul 22, 2018
7:30 pm – 9:00 pm
Free – $10.00


352 Onderdonk Avenue
Ridgewood, NY 11385 United States
+ Google Map

Support UnionDocs’ next phase and new building by becoming a member

Peek in the window of our bustling building in NYC and tune into the ideas and energy bubbling up from the UNDO Center.

Tune into cutting-edge, powerful and poetic documentary programs and connect to conversations with the artists and thinkers passing through.

Now available at the Apple Store.



Unlimited access to all of our monthly offerings for the price of two espressos.



Keep it simple and save. Unlimited access to our sweet offerings for a reduced, annual fee and receive some added benefits.



In the neighborhood, a working artist, student or senior? This membership is for you. Fill out a quick form for a discount code to an annual membership.



Get all of the benefits of the Annual UNDO Membership plus an annual subscription to UnionDocs Editions, a set of publications, merchandise or special objects.

UnionDocs is grateful for support from:

UnionDocs is hiring. 

Join the UnionDocs team.

Pod Pod 2023 Group 02

Pod Pod is now accepting applications.
Apply today!

Calling all AUDIO MAKERS looking for a bit of motivation, peer support, collective production and a dose of inspiration for your personal project —  join us for 3 months this Fall!