Larry Jordan – Our Lady of the Sphere (1972)

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Of all my films, this is the most popular to date. Unfortunately, it is also the most cartoon-like and has an almost visible storyline: the young boy’s travels through terror, death and the Underworld. My own conception of the circus sequence in the film connotes the world’s weakness for striking up the band to cover tragedy, as when someone falls from a high wire in the circus. I did achieve certain special “break-throughs” with OUR LADY OF THE SPHERE, in that the flat surface was broken with forward and away zooms, but this is a simple thing. In the process, I had to relinquish certain subtle and more tenuous relationships between moving components and also the highly artificial gravitational formulations and inventions of such films as DUO CONCERTANTES and HAMFAT ASAR. – Lawrence Jordan Continue reading

Raoul Ruiz – De grands événements et des gens ordinaires AKA Of Great Events and Ordinary People (1979)

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In 1978, Ruiz was commissioned to make a television documentary about the French elections from the viewpoint of a Chilean exile in the 11th arrondissement. But, contrary to the producers’ expectation, the Left lost. Ruiz seized on this anti-climax to make a documentary about nothing except itself – a film whose central subject is forever lost in digression and ‘dispersal’, harking back to his Chilean experiments of the ’60s. It is the best, and certainly the funniest, of self-reflexive deconstructions of the documentary form. Ruiz drolly exaggerates every hare-brained convention of TV reportage, from shot/reverse shot ‘suture’ and talking-head experts to establishing shots and vox pops (narrator’s note to himself: “Include street interviews ad absurdum”.) Every fragment of reality (e.g. polling booths on voting day) comes through the lens as a pre-fabricated televisual cliché. And, as always, Ruiz detonates his own auteur status.As an essay-film, Great Events contains many echoes – and a cheeky critique – of the sophisticated political filmmaking of Chris Marker. But Ruiz increasingly spices up the lesson with surreal elaborations – such as progressively shorter re-edits of the entire film, avant-garde decentrings of image and sound, and crazy runs of ‘secondary elements’ such as particular colours, angles and gestures. Continue reading

Vlatko Gilic – Dan vise AKA A Day More (1972)

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“Dan više” is about a mudbath near the small Serbian town of Bujanovac that is famous for healing illnesses. People cover themselves from head to toe in mud and then float on the water: Vlatko Gilić created a ghostly, surrealistic scenario, whose everyday quality is concentrated into an allegory of human suffering and quest.
“Mr. Gilic’s films are called documentaries. But he’s superb at finding the astonishing images that lurk in the ordinary world. It’s as if he’d nabbed some magic from the air and wedded it to facts. And it’s a privilege to see through his eyes: Whatever interests him assumes a contagious excitement for us.” Continue reading

Vlatko Gilic – In continuo (1971)

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SIlver Bear Berlin Festival Winner – Best Short FIlm

In continuo (1971), koji je nagrađen kao Najbolji kratki film na Berlinskom filmskom festivalu te godine, za koga se – bez sumnje – može reći da je u međunarodnim razmjerama uzdrmao ili preispitao pojmove i žanrove kratkog filma, dokumentarnog filma, te upotrebe simbola i metaforičkog značenja u paralelnilm

In Continuo uses slaughterhouse imagery to present the warlike nature of man, first depicting the cleaning and mechanical preparations for the slaughterhouse and then the killing, however, the animal slaughter itself isn’t shown. Continue reading