Jean-Marie Straub – Kommunisten (2014)

29f7c043f76a2bde437fd0d52a185152

Jean-Marie Straub pushes this musicality of blocks to a paroxysmal extreme, mixing blocks of time (40 years separate the various extracts that are going to be used, and what is to be filmed), blocks of text (Malraux, Fortini, Vittorini, Hölderlin) and blocks of language (French, Italian, German), and from this ruckus emerges the history of the world, yes, History with a capital H, and from the same movement, the political hope of its being overtaken. So this is an adventure film, about the Human adventure, still one that is always, in the end, overtaken by Nature. Continue reading

Satyajit Ray – Ghare-Baire aka The Home and the World (1984)

29f7c043f76a2bde437fd0d52a185152

Quote:
Both a romantic-triangle tale and a philosophical take on violence in times of revolution, The Home and the World, set in early twentieth-century Bengal, concerns an aristocratic but progressive man who, in insisting on broadening his more traditional wife’s political horizons, drives her into the arms of his radical school chum. Satyajit Ray had wanted to adapt Rabindranath Tagore’s classic novel to the screen for decades. When he finally did in 1984, he fashioned a personal, exquisite film that stands as a testament to his lifelong love for the great writer. Continue reading

Lizzie Borden – Born in Flames (1983)

29f7c043f76a2bde437fd0d52a185152

Plot Summary for
Born in Flames (1983)
Set ten years after the most peaceful revolution in United States history, a revolution in which a socialist government gains power, this films presents a dystopia in which the issues of many progressive groups – minorities, liberals, gay rights organizations, feminists – are ostensibly dealt with by the government, and yet there are still problems with jobs, with gender issues, with governmental preference and violence. In New York City, in this future time, a group of women decide to organize and mobilize, to take the revolution farther than any man – and many women – ever imagined in their lifetimes. Continue reading

Vsevolod Pudovkin – Dezertir AKA The Deserter (1933)

29f7c043f76a2bde437fd0d52a185152

Synopsis:
In 1929, four years before making this film, Vsevolod Pudovkin and Sergei Eisenstein had collaborated on a Sound Manifesto that called for a radical use of asynchronous sound effects, which would be used in counterpoint to the screen image, rather than supporting it, as is normally the case. In DESERTER, Pudovkin put this theory into practice.

Starring Boris Livanov as German dockworker Karl Renn, the film focuses upon a politically unconscious figure who learns the error of his ways. Renn becomes involved in picketing and demonstrating on the dock but walks out on his comrades one day, doubtful about the value of this kind of political activity. Continue reading

Jean-Luc Godard – Prières pour Refusniks (2004)

29f7c043f76a2bde437fd0d52a185152

Summary:
Jean-Luc Godard address two cinematographic letters to young Israeli soldiers who were convicted after refusing to intervene in the occupied territories

Background context:

Quote:
Refusal to serve in the IDF is a social phenomenon in Israel in which citizens refuse to serve in the Israel Defense Forces or disobey orders on the grounds of pacifism, antimilitarism, religious philosophy or political disagreement with Israeli policy such as the occupation of the Palestinian territories.

Conscientious objectors in Israel are known as sarvanim which is sometimes translated as “refuseniks”, or mishtamtim (evaders, dodgers) – wikipedia Continue reading