Robert Frank

  • Robert Frank – Energy and How to Get It (1981)

    Robert Frank1981-1990Short FilmUSA
    Energy and How to Get It (1981)
    Energy and How to Get It (1981)

    A spoof on documentary filmmaking, Frank’s entertaining reflection on truth and fiction stars William Burroughs as the Energy Czar and Robert Downey as a Hollywood agent.Read More »

  • Robert Frank – The Sin of Jesus (1961)

    Robert Frank1961-1970Amos Vogel: Film as a Subversive ArtArthouseDramaUSA
    The Sin of Jesus (1961)
    The Sin of Jesus (1961)

    The Sin of Jesus was based on the story of Isaac Babel, a woman on a chicken farm who spends her days working at an egg-sorting machine. “I’m the only woman here.” She is pregnant, her husband spends his days lying in bed, and his friends encourage him to go out on the town with them. The woman talks to herself as she works, lost in the monotony of human existence. She counts the passing days in the same way she counts eggs. Even extraordinary events, such as the appearance of Jesus Christ in the barn, go under the stream of this melancholy solipsism.Read More »

  • Robert Frank – O.K. End Here (1963)

    1961-1970ArthouseRobert FrankShort FilmUSA

    OK End Here is Frank’s 1963 short film about inertia in a modern relationship. The film alternates between semidocumentary scenes and shots composed with rigid formality, and appears to have been directly influenced by the French Nouvelle Vague and Michelangelo Antonioni’s films. The characters are often only partially visible or physically separated by walls, doors, reflections, or furniture, and the camera relays the story with little rhyme nor reason, a roaming gaze, which seems to lose itself in things of little importance, while at the same time capturing the dominant atmosphere of routine, alienation, and apathy.Read More »

  • Robert Frank – Keep Busy (1975)

    Robert Frank1971-1980ArthouseShort FilmUSA

    “I am filming the outside in order to look inside,” Robert Frank once said about his aesthetics. In Keep Busy his chosen home of Nova Scotia serves for the first time as the “outside” in an examination of the “inside.” The protagonists’ astounding verbal gymnastics and often incomprehensible interactions tend to descend into nonsense, and with the syncopated rhythm of its action and dialogue, this film is reminiscent of the playful and parodying elements of the Beat fantasy Pull My Daisy. The interweaving of documentary and fiction with the syncopated rhythm of its action and dialogue presents an absurd buzz of activity reminiscent of Beckett’s abstract comic grotesque.Read More »

  • Robert Frank – Pull My Daisy (1959)

    1951-1960ArthouseExperimentalRobert FrankUSA

    From Wikipedia: Pull My Daisy (1959) is a short film that typifies the Beat Generation. Directed by Robert Frank and Alfred Leslie, Daisy was adapted by Jack Kerouac from the third act of a never-completed stage play entitled Beat Generation. Kerouac also provided improvised narration. It starred Allen Ginsberg, Gregory Corso, Larry Rivers, Peter Orlovsky, David Amram, Richard Bellamy, Alice Neel, Sally Gross, Delphine Seyrig and Pablo Frank, Robert Frank’s then-young son.Read More »

  • Robert Frank – Harry Smith at the Breslin Hotel (2018)

    2011-2020DocumentaryRobert FrankShort FilmUSA


    In 1984, upon learning that his friend Harry Smith was being evicted from the Breslin Hotel, Allen Ginsberg encouraged Robert Frank to use his new video camera to document the move. Over a one-week period, Smith shows Frank examples of his collection of art, books, indigenous recordings and films.Read More »

  • Robert Frank – Last Supper (1992)

    1991-2000ExperimentalRobert FrankShort FilmUSA


    ‘Exterminating Angel’

    ‘Parts of Last Supper resemble an educational film with directions for its use. It deals with the impossibility of depicting something. Is it about the impossibility of depicting something? What is real? What is staged? What can be staged by coincidence? And which reality does a video camera record?
    ‘Guests arrive at a vacant lot in New York, which is surrounded by rundown apartment buildings. The host is a writer, and he intends to celebrate the publication of his latest book with his friends and acquaintances. A buffet has been laid out. Waiting for the writer. Waiting for Godot. He fails to show up. This level of the film is constructed in the same way as a theatrical work. The dialogues seem holographic: almost every quotable phrase reflects the meaning of the entire statement.Read More »

  • Jörg Adolph & Gereon Wetzel – How to Make a Book with Steidl (2010)

    2001-2010DocumentaryGermanyJörg Adolph and Gereon Wetzel

    Gerhard Steidl has spent the last 40 years printing and publishing books. His legendary, unconditional obsession with his trade has led him to become the publisher of choice for an A list of artists that include Martin Parr, Ed Ruscha, Robert Adams, Jeff Wall and Robert Frank among others.Read More »

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