Movie City Indie Archive for June, 2011

“Lens Flare: A J. J. Abrams Joint”

[H/t Vulture.]

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First DVD Edition Of Rivette’s epic OUT 1 Out In November

Out 1

Jacques Rivette’s 12-hour-nine-minute Out 1: noli me tangere is coming to DVD in November for a mere 70 euro, with German subtitles from absolut-medien.de. So where’s the English subtitled version! One go among worshipful viewers was not enough. Rivette talked about Out 1 to Bernard Eisenschitz, Jean-Andre Fieschi and Eduardo de Gregorio in April 1973. (Translation: Tom Milne.) This passage seems to speak to this hardly-seen “text.” “A film is always presented in a closed form: a certain number of reels which are screened in a certain order, a beginning, an end. Within this, all these phenomena can occur of circulating meanings, functions and forms; moreover, these phenomena can be incomplete, not finally determined once and for all. This isn’t simply a matter of tinkering, of something mechanical constructed from the outside, but rather… of something that has been ‘generated’ which seems to entail biological factors. It isn’t a matter of making a film or a work that exhausts its coherence, that closes in on itself; it must continue to function, and to create new meanings, directions and feelings.

“Here one comes back to the Barthes definition. I refer to Barthes a good deal, but I find that he speaks more lucidly than anyone else at the present time about this kind of problem… and he says: there is a text from the moment one can say: things are circulating. To me it is evident that this potential in the cinema is allied to the semblance of monumentality we were just talking about. What I mean is that on the screen the film presents a certain number of events, objects, characters in quotes, which are closed in on themselves, turned inward, exactly as a statue can be, presenting themselves without immediately stating an identity, and which simultaneously establish comings-and-goings, echoes, among one another.” Let the echoes begin.

Out 4
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Chicago Screenshots

After the first Mayor Daley’s practical ban on filming on Chicago locations ended, the city became a canvas for filmmakers fascinated by solid urban vistas that could also embrace human scale. (Paging Andy Davis…) A new Tumblr account, Chicago Screenshots, collects widescreen captures of movies shot by Lake Michigan. (Photographer Noah Vaughn is behind the collection.) The shots from Henry: Portrait Of A Serial Killer make an Edward Hopper-style suite of images of loneliness of Bucktown circa 1984. The first two: “Crime Story” and The Monitors.

Slightly more romantic than the third image, a frame grab from a recent trailer of a blown-up downtown Chicago from Transformers: Dark Of The Moon. The Marina Towers, seen in less crowded quarters in Bernie Sahlins’ 1969 science-fiction production, is among the casualties in Michael Bay’s 2011 epic.

Doc-Maker Adam Curtis Gets A Tender Slap

Here’s a playful nudge at Adam Curtis’ pile-on documentary style. (Embedding is disabled.)

“In a landmark new documentary produced for YouTube, Adam Curtis has not examined his career and laid bare his style in the light of some confused academic papers he stumbled across on the internet. Instead, I have plundered various video archives and ripped him off, up, down, left, right and back again,” japes “Psychonomy.” Entertaining commenters join in the to-and-fray.

“I Work For Documentary”: Sean Farnel Leaves Hot Docs After 6 Years

Sean Farnel, John Grierson

Since its inception, Hot Docs has become the second largest documentary festival in the world, after IDFA in Amsterdam. (I consider it a privilege I’ve attended the past four instalments.) While now-former programming director Sean Farnel doesn’t offer a roadmap to what comes next, his blog entry about leaving Hot Docs offers much about what’s come before: “I’ve watched over 4000 documentaries over the past twelve years. I still have notes on most of them. That’s a lot of reality. Another reality is that there comes a time to change course.” I like what Cameron Bailey tweeted tonight: “Sean Farnel worked 6 years at TIFF, 6 years at Hot Docs. One of the best in the business: taste, grit & humility. A Canadian.” [More at the link.]

[Photo: Sheffield Doc/Fest, November 2008; cradling Margaret Brown’s Youth Jury Grierson award for The Order Of Myths. © Ray Pride]

Why Ants Travel In Groups (0’30”)

Cahiers du Cinema’s cover image for TREE OF LIFE

What If Mountain Goats Had Been Around To Score THE WARRIORS? (3’38”)

[Via @mattfraction.]

Peter Greenaway’s “Nine Classic Paintings Revisited” (89 min presentation)

From autumn 2010, but his fixations haven’t waned.

All The Other Woodys In Under 90 Seconds

[Edited by Oliver Noble. Via Filmdrunk.]

Werner Herzog Reads “Go The F— To Sleep” (4’26”)

Jim Henson Animating (0’39”)

“Jim Henson working at his animation stand in Bethesda, MD around 1961. The footage is silent.” [Via The Henson Company.]

Teasing DON’T CLICK (미확인동영상) Korean Horror

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gPI2J3XdWfE&feature=player_embedded

Frames within frames and variable screen ratios… A good start.

Movie City Indie

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“I find it hard to believe that it’s pure machismo. It’s too simple of a thought. I don’t know what the reason could be. I also think that it makes sense that, as time goes by, filmmaking should become more of a women-dominated activity. To me, of course, I feel like it’s going to happen. It seems to me that, especially for a certain cinema with its own language, you need to take a lot of risks. And women receive a type of education that allows much more for failure than the type men receive. It is easier for a woman to take risks than for a man. But I’ll also tell you another thing, women need to learn to master the tools, to solve technical problems, to control unscripted situations. There is also a totally macho attitude that many women have internalized in terms of not solving certain technical problems on their own. That also makes them a little less capable… Female DoPs often think that their technical area is limited to pen and paper. And that’s wrong. You need to learn a lot of things to be a good DoP. For me, machismo breeds both a masculine education and a nefarious feminine education. Macho culture engenders an education for men and another for women. The education for men we already know, and is easily criticized. And the nefarious education that machismo has for women is exemplified by women who ultimately ignore how to use tools, who—when something breaks, or when it gets dark—are rendered useless and get desperate. Women who do not even know how to build a fire. They don’t know how to deal with these situations, because these were activities that have traditionally been delegated to men. That can make us… not very… prone to achieve certain things. For me, we first have to fight against our own education, and also against an external model of erasure that has rendered women less capable than men in certain fields.”
Lucrecia Martel

“When my first book came out in 1978, and Carter was president, the top tax bracket in the US started, at that time, at one hundred thousand dollars a year; the federal income tax was 70 percent. Now, that may be excessive—I mean, it certainly was excessive—but the people who are rich now are psychotically rich. It’s stupid amounts of money that people have, and they pay no taxes! And they are allowed to make money in ways that you were not allowed to make money before. So there used to be all kinds of laws in this country. All kinds of regulations: usury laws, laws that regulated the amount of interest you were allowed to charge, bank regulations—all this kind of stuff. These were laws made by humans. They could be made again by humans. There is no reason why people should be allowed to make billions of dollars. It’s a stupid amount of money. It’s just simply stupid. And no one earns a billion dollars. You earn twelve dollars an hour. These are stupid amounts of money. No one should have them.”
~ Fran Leibowitz