Larry Kent (filmmaker)

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Larry Kent
Born Laurence Kent
(1937-05-16) May 16, 1937 (age 81)
Johannesburg, South Africa
Other names Laurence L. Kent
Occupation Film director
Film producer
Years active 1962 - Present

Laurence Lionel "Larry" Kent[1] (born May 16, 1937 in Johannesburg, South Africa[2]) is a Canadian filmmaker.[3]


Larry Kent emigrated from South Africa to Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada in 1957 and immersed himself in the world of theatre.

A devout film buff and scholar, Kent made the transition from the stage to screen in the early 60's. Kent wrote and directed the existential Canadian indie, post-beatnik, pre-hippie classic The Bitter Ash in 1962 and tirelessly toured the film despite the controversy it garnered nationwide. Filled with profanity and brief nudity, the picture was produced on a shoestring, shot silent with audio dubbed in later and boasted a brilliant, relentless jazz music score.

His follow-up film, Sweet Substitute made money in the United States, a first for any Canadian independent picture. Together with his third picture, the proto-feminist film When Tomorrow Dies, these three movies comprise Kent's "Vancouver Trilogy".

Kent moved to Montreal in the late 1960s where he began making films that exemplified the wild, drug informed spirit of the youth driven counterculture. His 1967 film High premiered at the Montreal Film Festival the same year as the groundbreaking Arthur Penn film Bonnie and Clyde. That film's star, Warren Beatty, was one of High's strongest supporters, along with legendary German filmmaker Fritz Lang, who headed the jury that year.

During the 1970s and throughout the 80's, Kent continued to explore various aspects of the human condition in his work. Though he slowed down in the 90's somewhat, he made a stunning return to form in 2005 with what is perhaps his finest effort, The Hamster Cage, a demented black comedy/psychodrama that is as funny as it is disturbing. The Hamster Cage won the jury prize at the 2005 Austin Fantastic Fest.

In 2007, Kent completed post-production work on Hastings Street, a 20-minute Vancouver drama principally filmed in 1962.[4]

In 2009, Kent completed work on another, as yet untitled film and has plans for several more in the near future.

He is the mentor to director Jared Pelletier.[citation needed]

Select filmography[edit]


  1. ^ Dane Lanken (April 7, 1973). "Veteran Filmmaker Determined to Make Canadians Laugh". Montreal Gazette. Retrieved January 31, 2017. 
  2. ^ Larry Kent on IMDb
  3. ^ Vimeo user LarryKentFilms claims that he was born in 1933, not 1937. A 1973 article in the Montreal Gazette states he was born "33 years ago", suggesting a birth year of 1940 (or 1939).
  4. ^ Vimeo user LarryKentFilms uploaded Hastings Street to Vimeo in 2011.

External links[edit]