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Aspen Art Museum


Film Screening
FREAK POWER: The Ballot or the Bomb

At Maximum Capacity

Oct 17, 2020
6:00 PM
A film by D.J. Watkins and Ajax Phillips
2020 | 94 mins
Saturday, October 17 | AAM Rooftop
Doors Open 6 PM | Screening 6:30–7:30 PM

This Saturday, October 17, at 6:30 p.m., as the debut event in the museum’s After Dark program series, the AAM is pleased to partner with Gonzo Gallery founder and film co-director/publisher/writer D.J. Watkins and co-director, artist/activist/writer Ajax Phillips, to present a free rooftop screening of their feature-length documentary FREAK POWER: The Ballot or the Bomb.

Detailing iconic writer Hunter S. Thompson’s irreverent, imaginative, yet deadly serious 1970 campaign run for Sheriff of Pitkin County, the film’s narrative is driven by forty never-before-seen reels of archival campaign footage shot by Harvard film professor Robert Fulton and nearly 3,000 vintage photos by David Hiser and Bob Kreuger.

Set in the turbulent political climate that came to define the Nixon administration, FREAK POWER brings to vivid life Thompson and his campaign team’s challenges of trying to transform the political landscape in Aspen. Espousing progressive ideas on social and political reform that resonated with a deeply disillusioned younger generation seeking alternatives to polarized political norms, Thompson’s bid faced the corruption and cronyism of local politics, death threats, bombings, an agent provocateur, and the national scrutiny of an FBI intent on preserving a status quo many viewed as a antithetical to the ideals and principles of liberal democracy itself.

Attendance is limited due to ongoing public safety protocols and social distancing guidelines. RSVPs are required. Please email to be put on the waitlist.

Beverages, including a signature whiskey cocktail in the spirit of Hunter S. Thompson, and a snack box will be available for purchase from AAM So Café culinary partners Julia and Allen Domingos.

Attendees—Come in your best era-inspired Gonzo gear! Prizes will be awarded for the best costume!

Please dress warmly and bring blankets in anticipation of the seasonal weather and partially open-air environment of the rooftop.