Monday, December 26, 2011
the new releases:
1 4:44 LAST DAY ON EARTH and HUGO
2 THIS IS NOT A FILM
3 KABOOM!/THE IMPERIALISTS ARE STILL ALIVE!
5 I SAW THE DEVIL/WARRIOR
6 ANOTHER EARTH
7 WE NEED TO TALK ABOUT KEVIN/CONTAGION
8 POINT BLANK (A BOUT POURTANT)
9 CRAZY HORSE/NUIT BLEU
10 ATTACK THE BLOCK
Worst films of the year
1 GENERAL ORDERS NO. 9
2 SUPER 8
4 MIDNIGHT IN PARIS
best films by people im friends with (and all are best films of the year)
THE COLOR WHEEL
Thursday, December 15, 2011
Last night i revisited an amazing film that i have long adored: Pere Portabella's VAMPIR/CUADECUC, a document of the making of jess Franco's COUNT DRACULA. Or better said, Portabella's own version of the same film.
Known as a materialist masterpiece, Portabella's film is haunted by the trace of another filmmaker and spectral glimpses of a performed narrative vision (often eclipsed )and sound (wholly manipulated to mimic the sounds of the projector and of the editing room.)
I just finished a novel/non novel of sorts by W.G. Sebald titled Austerlitz. Both Sebald's and Portabella's work share a distrust of the way we have been taught , a distrust of memory and a distrust of the belief in a singular history, a sentiment reflected aesthetically in the distrust in conventions of storytelling and the urge to look at art as artifact. Towards the end of the book there is the inclusion of a found photograph (Portabella's images are all found footage too, just all from a single source and from one moment in time) of Paris' National Library. An old friend runs into the titular character there: " ...so, said Austerlitz, we began a long, whispered conversation in the Haut-de-jardin reading room, which was gradually emptying now, about the dissolution, in line with the inexorable spread of processed data, of our capacity to remember, and about the collapse, l'effondrement, as Lemoine put it, of the Biblioteque Nationale which is already under way. The new library building, which both in its entire layout and its near-ludicrous internal regulation seeks to exlude the reader as a potential enemy, might be described, so Lemoine thought, said Austerlitz, as the official manifestation of the increasingly importunate urge to break with everything which still has some living connection to the past." (p 286)
Thursday, December 1, 2011
Francois Ozon's bracing 5x2 deconstructs, in the most obstructionist of forms, a relationship and it's demise. Ozon 's film achieves this goal by going out of order as well as backwards.
Light and movement tell much of the story, giving an elemental, biological vagueness to this reflective search for what was missing and what was there. Throughout 5X2, natural light is a visible coorelative to the intangible thing in flux; sometimes intense, constantly moving, and fading away.
I just read a chapter of Sergei Eisenstein's memoir, Immoral Memories, titled "The Knot That Binds." It is a short anecdote about a photo postcard of a perfect family: a ribboned bow featuring images of the Gibson girl and Gibson boy ...the photocaption is "The Knot that Binds" because there is a picture of a baby in between the bow of Gibson girl and Gibson boy. The model relationship image is one that Sergei details being mesmerized by in his boyhood, as his own parents experienced an explosive divorce.
The only thing that binds in the beginning of the story of 5x 2, which happens to occur at the movie's end, is the blinding light of the sunset.
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