Mary Ellen Bute

  • Mary Ellen Bute – Finnegans Wake (1966)

    1961-1970ArthouseExperimentalMary Ellen ButeUSA


    A half-forgotten, half-legendary pioneer in American abstract and animated filmmaking, Mary Ellen Bute, late in her career as an artist, created this adaptation of James Joyce, her only feature. In the transformation from Joyce’s polyglot prose to the necessarily concrete imagery of actors and sets, Passages discovers a truly oneiric film style, a weirdly post-New Wave rediscovery of Surrealism, and in her panoply of allusion – 1950s dance crazes, atomic weaponry, ICBMs, and television all make appearances – she finds a cinematic approximation of the novel’s nearly impenetrable vertically compressed structure.Read More »

  • Mary Ellen Bute – The boy who saw through (1956)

    1951-1960ArthouseMary Ellen ButeUSA

    Bosley Crowther, NY Times, January 6, 1959 wrote:
    Also on the bill at the theatre is a whimsical and amusing three-reel film, entitled “The Boy Who Saw Through,” about a lad who can see through walls. The ability is implied to be symbolic of a child’s tendency toward candor and truth. It is based on a story by John Pudney and produced by Mary Ellen Bute.Read More »

  • Mary Ellen Bute – Seven short films by Mary Ellen Bute (1934 – 1940)

    1931-1940AnimationExperimentalMary Ellen ButeUSA

    (From Wikipedia)
    Mary Ellen Bute (November 21, 1906 – October 17, 1983) was a pioneer film animator who did much of her work in visual music. She was one of the first female experimental filmmakers in the U.S. From 1934 until 1953, she made 14 short, musical abstract films, working in New York. Many of these were seen in regular U.S. movie theaters, such as Radio City Music Hall, often before a prestigious film. Several of her films were also called “Seeing Sound” films.Read More »

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