Leslie Thornton – Peggy And Fred in Hell (1985-1996 and beyond)
Leslie Thornton’s remarkable, mind-boggling experimental feature-length cycle of short films which she’s been working on and releasing in episodes since 1981 is a postapocalyptic narrative about two children feeling their way through the refuse of late-20th-century consumer culture; the films employ a wide array of found footage as well as peculiar, unpredictable, and often funny performances from two “found” actors. Apart from one startling and beautiful color shot in the penultimate episode, Whirling, the whole cycle is in black and white. (Episodes that have been added since an earlier version of the cycle showed in Chicago six years ago include Introduction to the So-Called Duck Factory and The Problem So Far.) Highly idiosyncratic and deeply creepy, this series as a whole – which includes passages in both film and video, sometimes shown concurrently – represents the most exciting recent work in the American avant-garde, a saga that raises questions about everything while making everything seem very strange.
– Jonathan Rosenbaum
Warning: There are two errors with this rip. One occurs at 8:34 to 8:40 – there is a brief cut out of the vhs (about one second) and the vhs ‘tracking’ bar appears on the screen (for 5 seconds) – and the second error occurs around 33:00 to 34:17, in which there appears to be a zoom out / zoom in problem of a telecine/cam recording – but there are plenty of these zoom in zoom out sequences, so I don’t know if it is intentional or not (plus it is looped footage of a penguin existing a fenced area) which includes the soundtrack of a sequence that occurs during Roman Polanski’s film The Tenant. It is like that on the bootleg DVD, which this rip comes from, so it could not be prevented. And in my experience of this rip, which I just now watched, I have to admit that it doesn’t hamper the spectators experience of the cycle. This DVD appears to be a hybrid of many different sources, hence, these two minor irregularities.
1.16GB | 1h 31m | 640×480 | avi