1991-2000

Svetlana Baskova – Zelyonyy slonik AKA The Green Elephant (1999)

The Green Elephant also known as Green Elephant Calf) is a 1999 Russian gore film directed by Svetlana Baskov. The film could not be distributed through the mainstream film circuit in Russia, due to its extremely violent images and obscene language. The International Film Festival Rotterdam programme commented that “Green Elephant is even more urgent because of the escalation of the war in Chechnya and growing criminality in the Russian army Read More »

Raoul Ruiz – Fado majeur et mineur AKA Fado, Major and Minor (1994)

Quote:
Ruiz returned to Portugal, the locale of many of his films, to adapt Dostoevsky’s The Eternal Husband, and the end product, Fado, Major and Minor, is among the most elliptical and intriguing works in his filmography. Jean-Luc Bideau stars as a tour guide who after blacking out returns to his apartment to find a mysterious intruder (Melvil Poupaud) who holds him accountable for the death of his lover. After premiering at Cannes, the film all but vanished due to rights issues, but it endures for Ruiz’s toggles between tragedy and farce, black and white and color, pop music and the traditional fatalistic sea shanties of its title. Read More »

Vladimir Maslov & Yevgeny Yufit – Serebryanye golovy AKA Silver Heads (1999)

Synopsis:
Deep in the woods, in a secret bunker, a group of scientists is working on an experiment to crossbreed a human with a tree. In this low-tech science fiction film, experiments aimed to produce a better, purer human being appear as strange allusions to the films of David Cronenberg, with virtuality and cerebral dimension replaced by pure physicality. Machines stripped of any glamour and reduced to mere function resemble medieval torture chambers powered by electricity. With dark humor and raw visual aesthetic, Silver Heads is a major work from the Saint Petersburg underground art scene. Read More »

Stephen Dwoskin – Pain Is… (1997)

txt from Strictly Film School
(…)
“In Pain Is…, Dwoskin’s thoughtful rumination on the nature of pain, this intersection occurs in the conceptual mechanism of pain itself, in the way it surfaces amorphously, imprecisely, throughout the process and conduct of life, as well as in its insidious ability to create a subconscious shift in (sensorial) awareness – in essence, to reconfigure (if not transform) one’s immediate reality because of its existence. It is this untenable quality of pervasiveness and indefinability that Dwoskin articulates in an introductory analogy that sets the tone for the film’s organic (and inherently circular) exposition: Read More »

Gee-woong Nam – Daehakno-yeseo maechoon-hadaka tomaksalhae danghan yeogosaeng ajik Daehakno-ye Issda AKA Teenage Hooker Who Died and Became a Killing Machine (2000)

A sadistic teacher discovers one of his teenage students is a prostitute and blackmails her into becoming his sex slave. When she becomes pregnant, he arranges her demise. His henchmen (who are kind of like the Three Stooges) murder her and chop her up. At this point a mysterious, sunglasses-wearing Dr. Frankenstein-like character intervenes and rebuilds the remains into a cyborg (with the aid of a sewing machine). Now robotically revived, her memory comes back from a shock she had from her chest injury during a fight, and she sets out to avenge herself, going after the teacher and the three henchmen who committed the murder. Read More »

Manoel de Oliveira – Party (1996)

Quote:
The battle of the sexes? The forces of despair and seduction? On S. Miguel in the Azores, Rogério, a young man with old money, and his enigmatic wife Leonor host a garden party at their villa. The intriguing guests are an older unmarried couple, the philosophical and observant Irene, and Michel, a roué;. While Rogério and Irene talk, Michel and Leonor go down to the sea. The conversations upset Rogério and capture Leonor’s imagination. Five years later, the four dine at the villa. Michel and Leonor again leave the other two. Intentions and undercurrents are subtle. One of the four proves strong, one weak, and two must choose. Wind and rain bring down the curtain on both acts. Read More »

Carlos Reygadas – Adulte (1998)

A man, a coffin, a cliff. Bunuelian and surrealist in tone, yet not without humour.
A short film, shot in black & white 8mm. Read More »