2001-2010

Matthew Barney – Cremaster 3 (2002)

CREMASTER 3 (2002) is set in New York City and narrates the construction of the Chrysler Building, which is in itself a character – host to inner, antagonistic forces at play for access to the process of (spiritual) transcendence. These factions find form in the struggle between Hiram Abiff or the Architect (played by Richard Serra), and the Entered Apprentice (played by Barney), who are both working on the building. They are reenacting the Masonic myth of Hiram Abiff, purported architect of Solomon’s Temple, who possessed knowledge of the mysteries of the universe. The murder and resurrection of Abiff are reenacted during Masonic initiation rites as the culmination of a three-part process through which a candidate progresses from the first degree of Entered Apprenticeship to the third of Master Mason. Read More »

Ahmed Imamovic – Belvedere (2010)

The film deals with the tragedy of the women survivors of the Srebrenica genocide, or rather, the consequences of the horrors they experienced – it is about women whose sole purpose in life is to locate the bones of their loved ones and give them a decent burial. Fifteen years later, they still want just one simple thing – the truth. As a contrast, the film deals with trivialities of modern living, obsessed with different reality shows… Read More »

Robert Guédiguian – Le voyage en Arménie AKA Armenia (2006)

Barsam, Anna’s father, is seriously ill. Before he dies, he would like to bequeath something to his daughter: a sense of doubt. As he flees to Armenia, he leaves several clues in his wake so that Anna can come after him. For Anna, this journey she is obliged to make in an unknown country, becomes what her father wanted it to be: an initiation, a sentimental journey, a second adolescence. She finds him in a little village, lost in the Caucasian mountains, seated dreaming under a blossoming apricot tree. She will come to doubt her identity, her relationships and her commitments. Read More »

Jean-Claude Rousseau – Festival (2010)

Jean-Claude Rousseau is a filmmaker who believes in the natural power of images. The rigid compositions create something like a pure state, which constantly changes during the period of its viewing – like an empty and simultaneously detail-packed field. During this period the viewer is challenged to find and occupy his own position, to find his perspective in a similar way the filmmaker has found his in several places. Festival combines places the artist has visited during the last few years. Jean-Claude Rousseau’s films not only make beautiful discoveries, they are beautiful discoveries. Read More »

Fabrice du Welz – Vinyan (2008)

Synopsis:
Unable to accept the the loss of their son in the 2005 Tsunami, Jeanne and Paul Bellmer have remained in Phuket. Desperately clinging to the fact that his body was never recovered, Jeanne has convinced herself that the boy was kidnapped by traffickers in the chaos that followed the catastrophe… Paul is sceptical, but cannot bring himself to shatter his wife’s last hope. The traumatized couple embark on a quest that will plunge them through paranoia and betrayal, ever deeper into an alien universe, a supernatural realm where the dead are never truly dead, and where nightmares, obsession and horrifying reality converge. Read More »

Robert Kane Pappas – Orwell Rolls in His Grave (2003)

Synopsis:
A documentary analyzing the role of the modern American media and its effects on democracy.

Review:
The middle child to Joel Bakan and Harold Crooks’s The Corporation and Michael Moore’s Fahrenheit 9/11, Robert Kane Pappas’s Orwell Rolls in His Grave is an expert piece of investigative journalism that likens our media system to a subsidiary of our country’s corporate process. Polemically, Pappas’s incendiary media watchdog is closer in tone to Moore’s anti-Bush rant, but aesthetically it shares more in common with Bakan and Crooks’s Power-Point-ish exposé of corporate greed. Read More »

Zelimir Zilnik – Tvrdjava Evropa AKA The Fortress Europe (2001)

Fortress Europe is the latest semi-documentary film by Zilnik and was shot on the borders between Slovenia and Italy, Croatia and Slovenia and Hungary and Austria—i.e. the southern area covered by the Schengen Treaty governing the transit of migrants in Europe. As Zilnik notes in the accompanying interview, this new “wall” against the movement of people is more impenetrable than the Berlin wall. Read More »