Jonas Mekas

Jonas Mekas – Reminiscences of a Journey to Lithuania (1972)

— Jonas Mekas wrote:
“The film consists of three parts. The first part is made up of footage I shot with my first Bolex, during my first years in America, mostly from 1950-1953. It shows me and my brother Adolfas, how we looked in those days; miscellaneous footage of immigrants in Brooklyn, picnicking, dancing, singing; the streets of Williamsburg.

— Jonas Mekas wrote:
“The second part was shot in August 1971, in Lithuania. Almost all of the footage comes from Semeniškiai, the village I was born in. You see the old house, my mother (born 1887), all the brothers, goofing, celebrating our homecoming. You don’t really see how Lithuania is today: you see it only through the memories of a Displaced Person back home for the first time in twenty-five years. Read More »

Jonas Mekas – The Brig (1964)

Quote:
Jonas Mekas’ The Brig is a fake documentary about ten confined soldiers in a U.S. Navy ship and the three guards who beat and humiliate them. After the title of the film, “The Brig”, the next title is “March 7, 1957 – U.S. Marine Corps – Camp Fuji, Japan – 4:30” Then Mekas goes on showing the daily lives of the soldiers, which consists of beatings, degradations, unnecessary cleanings and senseless rituals. The audience is expected to constantly question the reality of what is on the screen while being moved by the illusion. Read More »

Jonas Mekas – This Side of Paradise: Fragments of an Unfinished Biography (1999)

Jonas Mekas spend his summer holiday with Jackie Kennedy, her sister’s families and children. Read More »

Jonas Mekas – Sleepless Nights Stories (2011)

Quote:
This film originated from my readings of the One Thousand And One Nights. But unlike the Arabian tales, my stories are all from real life, though at times they too wander into somewhere else, beyond the everyday routine reality.

There are some twenty-five different stories in my movie. Their protagonists are all my good friends and I myself am an inseparable part of the stories. The storyteller of the Arabian Nights was also part of his or her tales.

Some of the people in the movie you’ll recognize, some not. The fact that some of them you’ll recognize has no bearing on the stories: after all, we all recognize John Wayne or Annette Bening, but in their stories they are no longer the people we know. Read More »

Jonas Mekas – Birth of a Nation (1997)

Jonas Mekas’ BIRTH OF A NATION (1997) continues the filmmaker’s investigation into the possibilities of film-as-diary to offer glimpses of key figures of experimental cinema, including Stan Brakhage, Tony Conrad, and Michael Snow, compiled from footage shot over four decades. As far back as the masterpieces WALDEN (1969) and LOST, LOST, LOST (1976), Mekas has been turning his roaming camera on those around him, eschewing conventional documentary in favour of a more impressionistic, subjective engagement with his friends and surroundings. Read More »