Balibar, well-known as an actress and singer, left none of her talents unused in her directing debut. In this eclectic homage to Greek tragedy, Balibar and Léon are free of any convention. With a cameo by Barbet Schroeder.
Jeanne Balibar and Pierre Léon roam in tourist outfits through Paris and prepare a play with a producer who keeps changing her clothes. In a parallel world, another layer if you wish, actors rehearse their texts for a Greek tragedy on the beach at Deauville and at prominent Parisian locations. It is the story of Electra, probably a rather inefficient character, one who perseveres and refuses to give up the battle against injustice.
This absurd, slightly surrealist and occasionally humorous film looks like a theatre performance with its solemn dialogues and mise-en-scène issues. The makers, the actress Balibar and filmmaker Léon, however also use the medium by inserting screenshots of business e-mails – reflections on their plans. In addition, Balibar is a singer and she sings the texts as if the e-mails were edifying lieder. Electra, for Instance is, as one of the characters puts it, a true ‘culture souq’.
Experimental filmmaker Bill Morrison created this non-narrative feature, which derives a large portion of its visual beauty from the physical nature of the film medium itself. Decasia is primarily compiled from a wealth of old and damaged footage, in which the scratches, scraped emulsion, bubbles, streaks, and decaying nitrate add an extra dimension of texture to a patchwork of images both extraordinary and mundane. Originally created as part of a multimedia environmental performance piece, with the film screened in tandem with a performance by a 55-piece ensemble, Decasia has also been screened in a version with recorded score, composed by avant garde percussionist Michael Gordon. Decasia was screened at the 2002 Sundance Film Festival.—-by Mark Deming
A film that starts like an odd documentary on ski resorts suddenly declares its subject to be aluminum. And it’s all downhill from there, evoking in chapters the history of capitalism in the 20th century, the death of the God Progress in the valleys of the Alps and the question of the relationship between State and Industry. All’s fair in love and snow.
According to back cover: “A 1 hour re-mix useing [sic] the original and the remake.”
The sun shone on Old Trafford on 12th September 1970 as Manchester United beat Coventry 2:0 in a league match. It was not an important victory; that season Man Utd would only be also-rans in the race for the championship. But a record was preserved of the match that is probably unique in the history of film and television. Using eight 16mm cameras, Hellmuth Costard, one of the most important experimental filmmakers in German cinema of the 60s and 70s, followed every move over the 90 minutes of the man in the red jersey with the number 11 – traditionally associated with the conventional outside left, but here worn by the mercurial George Best. Continue reading
James Benning’s latest is a three hour+ shot featuring light, clouds and the much anticipated return of a BNSF train. Only info about this on the net is that a recent intended screening was cancelled. Continue reading
Once a common medium to record home movies and holiday souvenirs, the memory of Super-8 film is now disappearing fast. Yaël André has recycled a wealth of random Super-8 footage into a fake biography, with a cheeky off-screen voice.
There are only two protagonists in this film, and both remain invisible. There is the narrator, who addresses us in a confidential tone. And there is ‘George’, his imaginary friend. But there are many more personae: the imagined lives of a an adventurer, a psychopath, a perfect mother, an accountant and an invisible man…
Although the film appears divided into short thematic chapters, its real strength lies in the associative flow that guides us along a surrealist chain of thoughts, hypotheses and dreams. In the images, the decades from the 1940s to the present day appear all mixed up.
Yaël André’s storyline and editing technique make us see these anonymous and quite generic home movies with a fresh eye, as if they were the first of their kind. The combination of text and images results in a bizarre meditation on truth and fiction, life and death, grief and joy. Continue reading