Jack Sargeant (writer)

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Jack Sargeant
Jack Sargeant, 2018.
Jack Sargeant, 2018.
Born1968 (age 50–51)
United Kingdom
NationalityUnited Kingdom
GenresFilm, underground, subculture, art, true crime

Jack Sargeant (born 1968) is a British writer specializing in cult film, underground film, and independent film, as well as subcultures, true crime, and other aspects of the unusual. In addition he is a film programmer, curator, academic and photographer. He has appeared in underground films and performances. He currently lives in Australia.[1][2]

Since 1995 Sargeant has written and contributed to numerous books on underground film, including: Deathtripping: The Cinema of Transgression, about Cinema of Transgression filmmakers such as Richard Kern and Nick Zedd, Naked Lens: Beat Cinema, and Cinema Contra Cinema, a collection of essays on alternative film. He is the editor of the journal Suture, and has co-edited two volumes Lost Highways: An Illustrated History of the Road Movie (with Stephanie Watson) and No Focus: Punk on Film (with Chris Barber). In 2007 Deathtripping was republished by Soft Skull Press,[3] this was followed by a re-printing of Naked Lens: Beat Cinema in 2008.[4] In 2014 a collection of essays on the world of William Burroughs and associated artists such as Brion Gysin was published as Against Control by Swedish publisher Eight Millimetre.[5][6] In 2016 Amok Books published Flesh and Excess: On Underground Film.[7] [8]

He has contributed to numerous books on subjects ranging from Andy Warhol movies to road rage and car crash songs and his work has been included in collections such as Mikita Brottman's Car Crash Culture, Mendick & Harper's Underground USA, Wollen & Kerr's Autopia, among others.

He has also authored and edited true crime books including Born Bad, Death Cults, Bad Cop Bad Cop, and Guns, Death Terror'. These books have featured contributions from Monte Cazazza, Michael Spann, Andrew Leavold, John Harrison, Simon Whitechapel, Chris Barber, and others.

Sargeant has written introductions for Joe Coleman's Book of Joe and photographer Romain Slocombe's Tokyo Sex Underground.

He has contributed to publications such as Headpress as well as Panik, Electric Sheep, The Wire, Fortean Times[n 1] and Bizarre magazine, as well as academic journals such as Senses of Cinema and M/C. Since 2008 he has written film reviews and a regular column for the Australian film magazine FilmInk focusing on unusual areas of film culture. He has also appeared as an occasional guest on ABC Radio National's MovieTime.

Between 2001–2003 he was film editor at large for Sleazenation. He has written cover notes for DVDs by various underground and independent filmmakers, including the British Film Institute's DVD release of Kirby Dick's film Sick: The Life And Death of Bob Flanagan, Supermasochist and their Jeff Keen DVD box set. In addition he has contributed liner notes to the Throbbing Gristle TGV DVD box set.

As a public speaker Jack Sargeant has given numerous talks on a variety of subjects including the work of JG Ballard, William Burroughs, and many other subjects often related to subjects he has written about.[9] [10] [11]

Sargeant has appeared in numerous film and TV documentaries on culture and film, as well as having cameos in underground films. He has also appeared on a recording by the experimental group I/O.

He has promoted and organised shows for filmmakers and artists at the Horse Hospital in London and Cinematheque in Brighton, UK, and has also toured film festivals in America, Europe, and Australia, including the New York Underground Film Festival,[12] the Chicago Underground Film Festival,[13] Melbourne Underground Film Festival, Brisbane International Film Festival, and Sydney Underground Film Festival. In 2002 and 2003 he collaborated with Simon Kane on The Salon, an annual event that has featured performances by David Tibet, Cosey Fanni Tutti, and Cotton Ferox.[14]

Since 2008 he has been Program Director for the Revelation Perth International Film Festival, and in 2010 he curated the film program for Sydney Biennale.[15]

Jack Sargeant and Johannes Grenzfurthner at monochrom office (Museumsquartier, Vienna), 2018.

Sargeant has been a frequent collaborator of art and theory group monochrom and founder Johannes Grenzfurthner. He got invited to Vienna as Q21/MQ artist in residence by monochrom in winter 2018.[16]



  • Sargeant, Jack (1995). Deathtripping : the cinema of transgression. London: Creation Books.
  • Born Bad, London: Creation Books, 1996.
  • The Naked Lens: Beat Cinema, London: Creation Books, 1997.
  • Suture 1, London: Creation Books, 1998.
  • Cinema Contra Cinema, Berchem: Fringecore, 1999.
  • Lost Highways: A History of the Road Movie, (co-edited with Stephanie Watson) London: Creation Books, 2000.
  • Deathtripping: The Cinema of Transgression revised second edition, London: Creation Books, 2000.
  • Guns, Death, Terror, (as editor), London: Creation Books, 2002.
  • Death Cults, (as editor), London: Virgin Books, 2002.
  • Bad Cop / Bad Cop, (as editor), London: Virgin Books, 2003.
  • No Focus: Punk On Film, (co-edited with Chris Barber), Headpress, 2006.
  • Deathtripping: the Extreme Underground, revised third edition NYC, Soft Skull, 2007.
  • Naked Lens: Beat Cinema, revised third edition NYC, Soft Skull, 2008.
  • Against Contol Eight Millimetre, 2014.
  • Flesh and Excess: On Underground Film Amok Books, 2016.

Essays, chapters and other contributions[edit]

  • ‘Rope of Flesh: Mudhoney Deconstructed’, Necronomicon Book Two, ed. Andy Black, London: Creation Books, 1998.
  • ‘Towards The Medical’, Body Probe, ed. David Wood, London: Velvet Books, 1999.
  • ‘Bringing Out The Dead’, Addicted: The Myth and Menace of Drugs in Film, ed. Jack Stevenson, London: Creation Books, 2000.
  • Introduction to Butchershop in the Sky, James Havoc, London: Creation Books, 2000.
  • Introduction to Tokyo Sex Underground, Romain Slocombe, London: Creation Books, 2001.
  • ‘Violence and Vinyl: Car Crashes in 1960s Pop’, Car Crash Culture, ed. Mikita Brottman, New York: Palgrave / St Martins Press, 2001.
  • Introduction to William S Burroughs' Unforgettable Characters: Lola la Chata and Bernabe Jurado, Brisbane: Xochi Press, 2001.
  • ‘Voyeurism, Sadism and Transgression: Screen Notes and Observation on Warhol's Blow Job and I, A Man’, Underground USA: Filmmaking Beyond the Hollywood Cannon, ed. Xavier Mendick & Steven Jay Schneider, London: Wallflower, 2002.
  • ‘Squealing Wheels and Flying Fists’, Autopia, eds. Peter Wollen and Joe Kerr, London: ReAktion Books, 2002.
  • ‘Knee Deep in the Mud, Blood and Tears’, The Book of Joe, Joe Coleman, San Francisco: Last Gasp / Los Angeles: La Luz de Jesus Gallery, 2003.
  • ‘Sticks & Bones: Weapons Training’, Search & Destroy: the Vietnam War & Film, ed. Jack Hunter, London: Creation Books, 2003.
  • ‘Harry Crosby', Straight to Hell: 20th Century Suicides, ed. Namida King, London: Creation Books, 2004.
  • The Headpress Guide to Modern Culture, ed. David Kerekes, Stockport: Critical Vision, 2004.
  • ‘Introduction’ to The Gun Is Loaded, Lydia Lunch, Black Dog, London, 2008.
  • 'Revealing and Concealing: Notes and Observations on Eroticism and Female Pubic Hair’, in Hair Styling, Cultur and Fashion, eds Geraldine Biddle-Perry & Sarah Cheang, Berg, 2008.
  • ‘This Is Hardcore' in Cinematic Folds: The Furling and Unfurling of Images, ed Firoza Elavia, Pleasure Dome, 2008.
  • 'In Celebration of Going Too Far: Waterpower' in From the Arthouse to the Grindhouse, eds Rob Weiner & John Cline, Scarecrow, 2010
  • Sargeant, Jack (March – April 2015). "No escape!". Keeping it Reel. FilmInk. 10 (1): 35.
  • 'Hot, Hard Cocks and Tight, Tight Unlubricated Assholes: Transgression, Sexual Ambiguity and “Perverse” Pleasures in Serge Gainsbourg's Je t’aime moi non plus', in: monochrom #16-24, 2010.

Film and TV appearances[edit]

  • X, featured stripclub extra, Jon Hewitt, Australia, 2011.
  • The Advocate of Fagdom, documentary interviewee, France, 2011.
  • Blank City, documentary interviewee, USA, 2009.
  • Llik Your Idols, documentary interviewee, France 2007.
  • Russ Meyer: King of Sexploitation, documentary interviewee, Ireland / UK, Channel 5, 2004.
  • 100 Sexiest Moments, documentary interviewee, Channel 4, UK, 2003.
  • Love & Anarchy: The Wild World of Jaimie Leonarder, documentary interviewee, Pagan Films, SBS, Australia, 2002.
  • Debbie Does Damnation, cameo, Eric Brummer, 2001.
  • Fear, Panic And Censorship, documentary interviewee, Channel 4, October 2000.
  • New Apocalyptic Literature Jack Sargeant & Stuart Swezey as documentary subject, Denmark, 1999.
  • X-Tripping, interviewee and research advisor on documentary on underground film and culture, Channel 4, 1998.


  1. ^ As early as 2001 he examined possibilities of the Feraliminal Lycanthropizer.

External links[edit]


  1. ^ Marvell, Leon. "The idiosyncracies of a film festival curator". Realtime. Real Time.
  2. ^ Cox, Will. "Sex with Strange Neighbour". Broadsheet. Broadsheet Melbourne.
  3. ^ Vivaldi, Giuliano. "Deathtripping Review" (PDF). Film Philosophy. Film Philosophy. Retrieved 4 December 2018.
  4. ^ http://www.undergroundfilmjournal.com/interview-jack-sargeant-on-naked-lens
  5. ^ http://www.realtimeart.net/article/issue121/11586[permanent dead link]
  6. ^ Strong, Simon. "Against Control Review". Other Cinema. Retrieved 4 December 2018.
  7. ^ Vivaldi, Guiliano. "Towards A History of Visceral Cinema: Flesh And Excess: On Underground Film". Senses of Cinema. Retrieved 4 December 2018.
  8. ^ Ellinger, Kat. "Flesh and Excess: Author Jack Sargeant on Trangression and Visceral Bodies in Film". Diabolique. Retrieved 4 December 2018.
  9. ^ "JAN 7: J.G. BALLARD CLASS WITH VISITING LECTURER JACK SARGEANT". Miskatonic Institute of Horror Studies. miskatonic institute.
  10. ^ "William S. Burroughs in the World Beyond Literature by Jack Sargeant". Center In Paris.
  11. ^ "William S Burroughs: Cut-Ups, Culture and Counterculture". ACMI. ACMI.
  12. ^ "FESTIVAL ROUNDUP New York Underground Film Festival". Filmmaker Magazine.
  13. ^ "Introducing the 2013 Jury!". Chicago Underground Film Festival.
  14. ^ "Current 93, Cotton Ferox, Amal Gamal Ensemble, Dieter Müh October Gallery, London". Compulsion Online.
  15. ^ "Superdeluxe@Artspace". Artspace.
  16. ^ "Quartier21 Artist in Residence programme". Quartier21 Artist in Residence programme. Museumsquartier Vienna. Retrieved 3 December 2018.