Bent Hamer – 1001 Gram (2014)

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When Norwegian scientist Marie attends a seminar in Paris on the actual weight of a kilo, it is her own measurement of disappointment, grief and, not least, love, that ends up on the scale. Finally Marie is forced to come to terms with how much a human life truly weighs and which measurements she intends to live by.

The international prototype kilogram of 1889, the mother of all kilos, is today kept in a vault at Bureau International des Poids et Mesures BIPM in Paris. It is the last physical weight reference still in use and the national prototypes must from time to time be transported from their respective countries to Paris in order to be recalibrated Continue reading

Till Kleinert – Der Samurai (2014)

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A wolf strives through the woods around an isolated German village. Jakob the young local police officer is onto him, but scents something more in the darkness. What he finds is a man, it seems, wild eyed, of wiry build, in a dress. He carries a katana, a Samurai sword. When the Samurai invites Jakob to follow him on his crusade towards the village, it becomes Jakob’s mission to pursue the lunatic to end this wanton destruction. At the end of the night Jakob has experienced too much, is too far from whom he once was. Something hidden has been unleashed to meet the first rays of daylight. – imdb.com

Berlin International Film Festival 2014: DIALOGUE en Perspective (Nominated – Till Kleinert) Continue reading

Frédérique Devaux & Michel Amarger – Cinexperimentaux #9: Stephen Dwoskin (2006-2010)

Stephen Dwoskin was born in New York in 1939 and began making independent shorts there in 1961. In 1964 he followed his research work to London where he settled and participated in the founding of the London Filmmaker’s Co-op. His experimental films, for which he himself does the camera work, play with ideas of desire, sexual and mental solitude and the passage of time. In his films he also explores representation in cinema, performances, personal impressions and his own physical handicap which has been a source of inspiration for him throughout his career. His sensitive and emancipating works have been the subject of various international presentations. Continue reading

Theodoros Angelopoulos – O thiasos aka The Traveling Players (1975)

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Here is an excellent overview of the film that provides a ton of background information that greatly helps in understanding this outstanding film.

from Jump Cut, no. 10-11, 1976, pp. 5-6
copyright Jump Cut: A Review of Contemporary Media, 1976, 2004

“In THIASSOS even though we refer to the past, we are talking about the present. The approach is not mythical but dialectical. This comes through in the structure of the film where often two historical times are dialectically juxtaposed in the same shot creating associations leading directly to historical conclusions… Those links do not level the events but bypass the notions of past/present and instead provide a linear developmental interpretation which exists only in the present.”
— Theodoros Angelopoulos Continue reading

Ubu films – Ubu Films – Sydney Underground Movies 1965-1970 [Volume 1 & 2]

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UBU Films was a Sydney-based independent film-making co-operative which operated from 1965 to around 1970. Its members produced many of the most important experimental and underground films made in Australia in the Sixties. Ubu was also a pioneer of psychedelic lightshows in Australia, and during the late Sixties the UBU collective was Sydney’s leading lighting provider for dances, discos and other special events.

Formed by Albie Thoms, David Perry, Aggy Read and John Clark at Sydney University in 1965, UBU FILMS was Australia’s first group dedicated to making, exhibiting and distributing experimental films. Although these four are considered the key members, the UBU circle took in many young film-makers who were to become very prominent in later years including Matt Carroll, Peter Weir, Phillip Noyce and Bruce Beresford. Continue reading

Rainer Werner Fassbinder – Mutter Kusters’ Fahrt zum Himmel aka Mother Kusters Goes To Heaven (1975)

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Mother Küsters’ Trip to Heaven (German: Mutter Küsters’ Fahrt zum Himmel) is a 1975 German film written and directed by Rainer Werner Fassbinder. It stars Brigitte Mira, Ingrid Caven, Karlheinz Böhm and Margit Carstensen. The film was shot over 20 days between February and March of 1975 in Frankfurt am Main.

Emma Küsters (Mira), a working-class woman lives in Frankfurt with her son and daughter-in-law. While she is doing outreach work assembling electric plugs, Frau Küsters learns that her husband Hermann (a tire-factory worker for twenty years) has killed his supervisor and then committed suicide. It later becomes apparent that Mr. Küsters had become temporarily insane after hearing layoff announcements. Continue reading

Tomu Uchida – Kiga kaikyo aka The Straight of Hunger (1965)

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IMDb user chaosrampant wrote:
We’re beating a dead horse if we begin to lament another lost treasure, another overlooked Japanese director who’s yet to receive his dues. Uchida will have to queue up in a humongous line. The film canon, as we know it, as it’s being taught to college kids in film classes, is written from a Western perspective and is so incomplete as to be near useless. It’s safe to say we’re living in the Dark Ages of cinema, in the negative time of ignorance, and that 100 years from now Straits of Hunger will feature prominently in lists of the epochal narrative films of the previous century. We may choose to keep honoring the Colombuses and pretend we invented paper or gunpowder, but film history will invariably reveal the pioneers. Continue reading