Watching televangelists is a lonely and frightening hobby. During the wee, small hours of the night when all the sane people are sleeping, the local affiliates and public access channels give up their airwaves to the money-hungry faith healers and their bizarre visions of salvation. No offense to the believers out there, but can anyone really take the Robert Tiltons and Benny Hinns of the world seriously? The hair, the suits, the speaking in tongues, the frequent demands for money in return for "anointing" — too much time spent alone with these guys is dangerous to your mental health. And these two are just the tip of the faithberg. The Free Form Film Festival has scoured the corners of the Lost Media Archive to create Praise the Tube, a collection of vintage outsider religious programming from across America. Find out the satanic secrets of Pokémon, witness as "Satan Bites the Dust," and generally marvel at the outer limits of religious expression when the FFFF screens these dusty gems at 8 p.m. tonight at Mad Art (2727 South 12th Street; www.freeformfilm.org). In true televangelist spirit, they will ask for money before you can enter the screening room of the kingdom of heaven — but only $5.
Sun., Nov. 23, 2008