I would love so much to get to see this. The premiere, which is this Friday, is completely sold out. Still, it is running till the 5th of may.
From The Glue Factory website:
Burrowing through that dark vein of German Expressionism and Soviet propaganda films, 85A Collective, in association with the Glue Factory, are proud to present their first self-produced film: ‘Chernozem’ (Black Earth).
Launching as a fringe event to G.I. 2012, the film has been expanded into a ‘total cinema’ experience- a hair raising Gesamtkunstwerk entitled: ‘CHERNOZEM:KINO!’
Quite literally taken on a surreptitious ride through a series of multi-sensory scenes from the film within a large-scale post-industrial environment, the awe-struck audience can expect mesmerizing mechanical kinetic sculptures, immersive set design, intense lighting + projection, pummeling live music, salvos of sound design and rapid-fire performance … with the terrified cinéaste ultimately ‘projected’ into the film itself!
“A desperate cog in a monstrous machine!!”
CHUNG! CHUNG! CHUNG! CHUNG! CHUNG!! CHUNG…!!
:::The Glue Factory:::
Twitter is great for certain things. If you are expressing yourself with only 128 characters it brings a certain clarity of thought, encouraging not only levity but also the sharing of fleeting impressions. It can also be a great conversational tool. My first thought was to post this musing to twitter but, at the end of the day, more people following this blog than follow me on twitter. Also, I do like to go on a bit…
I am currently reading The Drowned World by JG Ballard. I got it out from the library over a year ago along with a few other Ballard titles and kinda forgot to return it. Another county library system I owe money to added to an already extensive list. Reading it I am struck by its inherent cinematic nature – The urge I have to film it is overwhelmingly strong and I find myself pondering how a certain paragraph, page or scene would be expressed in a screenplay and through the camera lens. I think if done right it could equal the works of Tarkofsky in its expression of the interior. In fact, Tarkofsky would of been a perfect directorial candidate for a adaptation.
I have recently been struck by a thought concerning science fiction cinema – With the exception of perhaps ‘Alien’ all the greats have been based on short stories and novels. What is it about science fiction that makes it so inherently unsuited to being expressed in screenplay form from inception? (ooh! Inception! No, wait, wasn’t that based on a short story by Nolan’s brother?)
Maybe I’m wrong and getting carried away with this notion of mine. What do you think?
To whoever was up on EITHER/OR/BORED today looking at my post on the underground film ‘Pull My Daisy’ – I notice that the link to the film was broken, so i fixed it. In fact, it is now embeded on the page.
For everyone else, the post in question can be found here.
From the Dangerous Minds blog:
Frederick Wiseman’s powerful, depressing—Roger Ebert called it “despairing” and that’s probably a better word—1967 documentary Titicut Follies revealed the sordid and horrific conditions of the Bridgewater State Hospital for the criminally insane in Bridgewater, Massachusetts.
Wiseman’s camera watches impassively as the patients are bullied, taunted, herded like cattle, mocked, stripped, drugged and kept in sub-human conditions by the institution’s callously indifferent guards, social workers and psychiatrists. The film is a narrator-less, structure-less collection of some of the bleakest cinéma vérité images in film history. The footage of the yearly New Year’s Eve talent show, the “Titicut Follies” (“Titcut” is the Indian name for the Taunton river) featuring the inmates (and some of the staff) is like something straight out of a Harmony Korine film. In another scene, a doctor smokes a cigarette and dangles a long ash over a funnel as he inserts a long rubber tube into a patient’s nostril for a force-feeding.
Just added a link to a great site featuring cinematographic analysis of different films. If you are at all interested in photography, cinematography or movies I totally recommend it.
Cinevenger is about looking at the photography of a film and peeling back the layers of visual meaning that have been created both consciously and unconsciously by the filmmakers. This is done from two perspectives: looking at the photography of previously released films, and also examining the efforts of cinematographers photographing films currently in production.
Thanks be for Tim for hipping me to this.
This post should be better, more indepth, with more links. Maybe at some point in the near future.
Sometimes, very rarely, it is possible to watch entire films on youtube without them being cut into a million pieces. This is one of those instances…
This rarely seen, rarely known, underground film staggered out of the mess that was Berlin in 1984 (whether the release date was a deliberate reference to Orwell’s novel or merely synchronicity i do not know). You can look at as a critique of society, of media, of totalitarianism. As a treatise on the power of symbols, the way in which they pervade and control our lives and the ways in which they can be highjacked for alterior ends. I suppose it is all of those things. It’s a messy film made on not much of a budget and featuring such countercultural luminaries as William Burroughs and Genesis P. Orridge in cameo roles.
It is possible to get hold of this film on DVD but it ain’t cheap. There are other ways to get hold of it but I won’t be going into them here
This might be your only opportunity to watch this astounding piece of cult filmmaking so, you know, pull the sofa up to your PC, turn out the lights and click play.
Tim sez: “Beautifully done! Every shot is so well thought out and crafted. Texturing, lighting and cinematography is awesome.”
For those that thought that yesterday was a bit flippant and lighthearted here on Either/Or/Bored here’s an article on the casualisation of the language of rape in modern society:
We live in a strange and terrible time for women. There are days, like today, where I think it has always been a strange and terrible time to be a woman. It is nothing less than horrifying to realize we live in a culture where the “paper of record” can write an article that comes off as sympathetic to eighteen rapists while encouraging victim blaming. Have we forgotten who an eleven-year-old is? An eleven-year-old is very, very young, and somehow, that amplifies the atrocity, at least for me. I also think, perhaps, people do not understand the trauma of gang rape. While there’s no benefit to creating a hierarchy of rape where one kind of rape is worse than another because rape is, at the end of day, rape, there is something particularly insidious about gang rape, about the idea that a pack of men feed on each other’s frenzy and both individually and collectively believe it is their right to violate a woman’s body in such an unspeakable manner.
The Careless Language Of Sexual Violence – The Rumpus.net.
Sheen’s case is an extreme example of how the media peddle a toxic materialistic ideology. The (nearly all rightwing) media in America, and in this country too, have been only too happy to sell papers or broadcasting space by reporting his disturbance. But these stories only sell because people in the UK and US have become addicted to the media’s continuous recycling of materialist values. There is now no doubt that the kind of person who seeks celebrity is more likely to have a pre-existing potential for narcissistic, self-aggrandising behaviour. This was proved by a recent study of 200 US celebrities, while a 2006 study showed that, as a whole, Americans are six times more narcissistic than they were 50 years ago.
via Are the media fuelling Charlie Sheen’s breakdown? | Comment is free | The Observer.
Oh Edison, you intellectual property whore…
It was a dark and stormy night on December 18, 1908. Okay—maybe it wasn’t so dark and stormy. But it should have been, because that was the night Thomas Edison tried to hijack the motion picture industry.
“With his beetle brows, long wispy hair, and beatific look, Edison might have seemed the addled inventor,” writes the historian Neil Gabler, “but he was a shrewd businessman and a fearsome adversary who was never loath to take credit for any invention, whether he was responsible or not.”
But the old man wanted it all, so he assembled his rivals and proposed that they join his Motion Picture Patents Company. It would function as a holding operation for the participants’ collective patents—sixteen all told, covering projectors, cameras, and film stock. MPPC would issue licenses and collect royalties from movie producers, distributors, and exhibitors.
Ars Technica: Thomas Edison’s plot to hijack the movie industry
Anybody who has seen robert rodriguez’s Planet Terror, on its own or as part of the Grindhouse double feature, will remember the fake trailer that plays at the beginning/in the intermission for a ‘mexploitation’ flick called Machete. Well, it turns out that this is a project that is actually coming to a cinema near you! It’s got a mad cast as well including Jessica Alba, Robert De Niro, Lindsay Lohan, Steven Seagal and Cheech Marin. Oh, and of course, the unimitable Danny Trejo!
It promises to be a riot.
What with all the bullshit over immigrants going on in Arizona Trejo and Rodriguez stopped by ain’t it cool news to drop off a special cut of the trailer just for arizona. Just follow the link below for your viewing pleasure!
Hey Arizona, Don’t Fuck With This Mexican… MACHETE has some Cinco De Mayo words for you!!! Now in 720p! — Ain’t It Cool News: The best in movie, TV, DVD, and comic book news..
Which, as you will notice, was totally ripped off by Walt Disney for a segment in <em>Fantasia</em>
Essay on production design/art direction extrodinaire William Cameron Menzies by American film theorist/critic David Bordwell:
William Cameron Menzies was a wunderkind. He started working on films in 1919 when he was twenty-three; ten years later he won an Academy Award. By the time he died in 1956, he had participated in over seventy films. Why has nobody written a book about him?
Don’t look at me. After several years sporadically tracking his career, I’m aware that this is a mammoth task. Here I want just to float some ideas about a filmmaker as distinctive, and sometimes as delirious, as Busby Berkeley. Like Berkeley, Menzies shows that a strong imagination can yank the screen away from weak directors. Like Berkeley, he shows that the studio system gave considerable leeway to flamboyant, even peculiar imagery, as long as it could be somehow motivated by story and genre. Just as important, he shows how exceeding the limits of that sort of motivation can seem daring, or maybe just cockeyed.
William Cameron Menzies: One Forceful, Impressive Idea << davidbordwell.net : essays.
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snarfed from the may issue, bits of which are now online for your viewing pleasure. It’s an Italian cinema special!
Right now i’m reading the next issue which concerns itself with, amongst other things, the bestest books on cinema. Also four lions is film of the month. W00t!
Cinematic nostalgia, endemic corruption and the deadening hand of Silvio Berlusconi have prevented Italy’s real story from being told on film for 30 years, says Nick Hasted. But now a new generation of film-makers is finding its voice
BFI | Sight & Sound | Italian Cinema: Maestros and mobsters.