Intro from CPH : DOX homepage
The 100 year old film images sparkle and crackle with an expressive fury, which almost looks like a reaction to what they depict. This year, it is 100 year since the First World War – the first ‘modern’ war, and the first to be documented in moving images – forever destroyed any notion of the (Western) world’s continued progress under the banner of reason and industrialisation. 1914 was the modern era’s absolute year zero. A landmark year, which is here marked in a cinematic collaboration between the renowned American filmmaker Bill Morrison and the string quartet Kronos Quartet, who have recorded the original score by the Serbian composer Aleksandra Vrebalov. For over a decade, Morrison has specialised in bringing early film footage back to the cinema – often in a state where the film reels physical foundation is in a state of dissolution, which gives the images a literally unique cinematic feel that simply must be experienced. ‘Beyond Zero: 1914 – 1918’ consists entirely of archive footage that is presented naked and without explanatory text or speech, and Morrison’s special methods lift the never-before-seen footage from the devastating war to downright dizzying heights, as lost figures trudge through scarred landscapes towards a certain death – shrouded in a thundering, photochemical inferno of scratches, dents, flashing lights and blurred bubbles.