Ben Rivers & Ben Russell – A Spell to Ward Off the Darkness (2013)


A Spell follows an unnamed character through three seemingly disparate moments in his life. With little explanation, we join him in the midst of a 15-person collective on a small Estonian island; in isolation in the majestic wilderness of Northern Finland; and during a concert as the singer and guitarist of a black met al band in Norway.

Marked by loneliness, ecstatic beauty and an optimism of the darkest sort, A Spell is a radical proposition for the existence of utopia in the present.

Starring musician Robert AA Lowe (best known for his intense live performances under the name Lichens) in the lead role, A Spell lies somewhere between fiction and non-fiction – it is at once a document of experience and an experience itself, an inquiry into transcendence that sees the cinema as a site for transformation.
Continue reading Ben Rivers & Ben Russell – A Spell to Ward Off the Darkness (2013)

Sogo Ishii – Dead End Run (2003)


Dead End Run is an hour length collection of three short films by Japanese visual genius Ishii Sogo. Starring three of Japan’s hippest and most talented actors: Yusuke Iseya (Casshern,) Masatoshi Nagase (Electric Dragon 80,000V) and the extraordinary cool Tadanobu Asano (Ichi the Killer, Electric Dragon 80,000v.) Each short focuses on the protagonists running away from a threat, be it a hitman or the police then finding themselves stuck in a dead end. Continue reading Sogo Ishii – Dead End Run (2003)

Masao Adachi – Ryakusho: renzoku shasatsuma AKA Serial Killer (1969)


Midnight Eye wrote:
A horrifying series of murders, committed by a teenaged killer in 1968, prompted a group of filmmakers to chart his path, capturing the things he might have seen before committing his crimes. Their result is this provocative, rarely-screened meditation on geography and society. Continue reading Masao Adachi – Ryakusho: renzoku shasatsuma AKA Serial Killer (1969)

Esteban Sapir – La antena AKA The Aerial (2007)


An impressive example of the vitality and the formal potential of silent cinema, the long-awaited second feature by Esteban Sapir is also welcome proof of the continuing attraction it has for contemporary film makers. Inspired by the cinema of Murnau and Lang, of Eisenstein and Vertov, La Antena is nevertheless a very modern film. Not only in the theme – monopolisation, consumerism, cultural dulling – is there talk of an update, also the form, the editing and the techniques used reveal that La Antena is a film of our own time. Continue reading Esteban Sapir – La antena AKA The Aerial (2007)

Philippe Grandrieux – Malgré la nuit AKA Despite The Night (2015)


Synopsis wrote:
Lenz leaves England and returns to Paris in search of Madeleine who disappeared in uncertain circumstances. He meets Helena, a nurse still struggling with the loss of her infant son. Thus begins a fevered love story set against a backdrop of sorrow, passion, jealousy and self-destruction. Continue reading Philippe Grandrieux – Malgré la nuit AKA Despite The Night (2015)

Rebecca Baron – Detour de Force (2014)


Detour de Force presents the world of thoughtographer Ted Serios, a charismatic Chicago bell hop who, in the mid-1960’s produced hundreds of Polaroid images from his mind. Constructed from 16mm documentation of Serios’s sessions and audio recordings of Serios speaking with Dr. Jule Eisenbud, the Denver psychiatrist who championed his abilities, the film is more ethnography than biography, portraying the social and scientific environments in which Serios thrived. The film foregrounds the state of image and sound recording technologies of the period as essential to the emergence of Serios’s psychic photography. It is also a document of the filmmaker’s encounters with the archival materials themselves. The film enjoys a rich sound environment by Ernst Karel, Kyle Bruckmann and Guiseppe Ielasi. Continue reading Rebecca Baron – Detour de Force (2014)

Various – The Dream Machine (1980 – 1983)


reviev of Dream Machine from link
Burroughs’ Dream Machine On Film… Nearly., 26 March 2004
Author: scottanthony from Dorset, England

In theory: a short non-narrative film made to commemorate the visit of Burroughs and Gysin to the UK. In practice: four shorts (directed by Jarman, Kostiff, Maybury and Wyn Evans) broken up by footage of Gysin gazing at said machine. Continue reading Various – The Dream Machine (1980 – 1983)