With a pocketful of medical-testing money 20 years ago, Robert Rodriguez stood
on the verge of a revolution in independent filmmaking. The University of
Texas alumnus took a few thousand dollars and unlimited creativity down to
Mexico and made "El Mariachi."
Last year the Library of Congress made the film a part of American movie
history, preserving it as part of the National Film Registry on the grounds
of the film's cultural, historical and aesthetic importance.
Thursday, AMD, the Austin Film Society and Rodriguez's nascent El Rey Network
celebrate the film's 20th anniversary with a 35 mm screening of Rodriguez's
feature debut at the Paramount Theatre.
The special "El Mariachi" screening will be preceded by the Texas
filmmaker's early short film, "Ismael Jones and the Eyes of the Devil."
After a post-screening Q-and-A, Rodriguez and his band will perform songs
from a host of the director's movies while scenes play on the screen behind
them. Tickets ($25-$100) can be purchased at AustinTheatre.org
. Proceeds from the event will benefit the Texas Filmmakers' Production
Fund. 7:30 p.m. Thursday, 713 Congress Ave.