Nicolás Pereda – El palacio (2013)

xPE2EZ Nicolás Pereda   El palacio (2013)

29f7c043f76a2bde437fd0d52a185152 Nicolás Pereda   El palacio (2013)

Pereda’s films pass through a transitional period; Los mejores temas was probably a conscious farewell to a filmic representation system while Matar extraños turned out to be an enigmatic first test; El palacio is a new attempt at renovation, an experiment. These last two films show a novel element —the shifting of the family and domestic spheres to a public and political space. Whereas Matar extraños used revolution as its focal concept, in this enigmatic film the microphysics of power is the permeating idea.
The opening wide shot is brilliant; the 17 women who appear in this film are washing their teeth at the same time. Among this group there are little girls, young and old women, and they are not at a bathroom but at a patio filled with large sinks. Their activity unites them, though their experiences and, eventually, their functions differ. Where are they? For several minutes the only thing we will see are the diverse cleaning-related actions performed by these women. Everything happens in an old house, without any indication of its location. Abstraction and routine. Pereda is capable of filming someone hanging clothes to dry or making a bed as if those were aesthetic events.
A donkey wonders around and imposes a comical tone for a moment; but a donkey is an animal used for servitude. And the title of the film mentions a palace.
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Andres Veiel – Black Box BRD (2001)

svu0Eu Andres Veiel   Black Box BRD (2001)

29f7c043f76a2bde437fd0d52a185152 Andres Veiel   Black Box BRD (2001)

This documentary is highly recommended, as it somewhat manages to keep a neutral point of view on this most controversial issue of post war german history.

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This documentary by German filmmaker Andres Veiel takes a look back at German politics of the ’70s and ’80s, a troubled era when the government was engaged in a war against the leftist movement known as the Red Army Fraction. The conflict is addressed by focusing on the lives and deaths of two men whose fates became tragically intertwined in 1989. Alfred Herrenhausen was a high-ranking member of the Deutsche Bank who was killed by a Red Army Fraction bomb attack. Wolfgang Grams, a radical activist, was a major suspect in the attack. Four years later, he was tracked down by police and killed. Through interviews with relatives, friends, and colleagues of both men, a clear picture of the times emerges. While the film makes no attempts to place blame or assign guilt, it does raise many questions about German politics today. ~ Connor McMadden, All Movie Guide
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Patricio Guzmán – Nostalgia de la luz (2010)

3W125D Patricio Guzmán   Nostalgia de la luz (2010)

29f7c043f76a2bde437fd0d52a185152 Patricio Guzmán   Nostalgia de la luz (2010)

In Chile, at three thousand metres altitude, astronomers from all over the world gather together in the Atacama desert to observe the stars. The desert sky is so translucent that it allows them to see right to the boundaries of the universe.
It is also a place where the harsh heat of the sun keeps human remains intact : those of the mummies, explorers and miners. But also the remains of the dictatorship’s political prisoners.
Whilst the astronomers examine the most distant galaxies in search of probable extraterrestrial life, at the foot of the observatories a group of women are digging through the desert soil in search of their disappeared relatives… Continue reading

Nicolas Philibert – Étre et avoir AKA To Be and to Have (2002)

3Y6mSU Nicolas Philibert   Étre et avoir AKA To Be and to Have (2002)

29f7c043f76a2bde437fd0d52a185152 Nicolas Philibert   Étre et avoir AKA To Be and to Have (2002)

How do we learn to live with others and their wishes? Director Nicolas Philibert poses this question in a village schoolhouse in Auvergne, where Georges Lopez teaches 13 children, ages ranging from about four to 12. Against a landscape of mountains and farmland, from driving snow to rain to sun, the children gather in Lopez’s warm and colorful classroom, to read, write dictation, cook, and sort things out. At home, the older ones do homework with parents after their chores. At year’s end, they look ahead to the next, visiting the middle school and meeting the little ones coming in the fall. As they learn sums and adjectives, with Lopez’s help, they also learn to live side by side -IMDb Continue reading

Frederick Wiseman – Law and Order (1969)

cri144397 Frederick Wiseman   Law and Order (1969)

29f7c043f76a2bde437fd0d52a185152 Frederick Wiseman   Law and Order (1969)

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One of the best of Wiseman’s documentaries, an impressionistic account of the daily police routine in a predominantly black neighbourhood of Kansas City, Missouri. Although violence abounds, with a black prostitute almost strangled by a vice-squad cop, the film avoids grinding axes about police brutality. Instead, sitting back and coolly observing the situation from multiple perspectives, it suggests that any sickness in the forces of law and order is a symptom of disease in the society that breeds them. Continue reading

Ben Rivers – Two Years at Sea (2011)

Aguig4 Ben Rivers   Two Years at Sea (2011)

29f7c043f76a2bde437fd0d52a185152 Ben Rivers   Two Years at Sea (2011)

Two Years at Sea (88min, 16mm anamorphic , b/w, blown-up to 35mm, 2011)

A man called Jake lives in the middle of the forest. He goes for walks in whatever the weather, and takes naps in the misty fields and woods. He builds a raft to spend time sitting in a loch. Drives a beat-up jeep to pick up wood supplies. He is seen in all seasons, surviving frugally, passing the time with strange projects, living the radical dream he had as a younger man, a dream he spent two years working at sea to realise. Continue reading

David Lynch – Idem Paris (2013)

DnX8VM David Lynch   Idem Paris (2013)

29f7c043f76a2bde437fd0d52a185152 David Lynch   Idem Paris (2013)

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Filmed at the eponymous Idem Paris, a fine art printing studio in Paris, France, and “virtually wordless”, the film documents the lithographic process. It was edited by Noriko Miyakawa and mixed by Dean Hurley.

Idem Paris was shot on high definition digital video and presented in black-and-white. Critics drew comparisons between Idem Paris and Lynch’s debut feature film, 1977’s Eraserhead, noting that both had “high-contrast black and white images, the focus on specific machinery, and the clanking and hissing array of sounds.”

Describing the background of the film, Lynch said: Continue reading

pixel David Lynch   Idem Paris (2013)