Thursday, September 13, 2007

London Film Festival announces line-up for 2007

The 51st London Film Festival’s today announced its full programme, which includes includes 184 features and 133 shorts plus a host of screen talks, masterclasses and live events.

Opening the Festival on Thursday 17 October is the UK premiere of David Cronenberg’s Eastern Promises with Viggo Mortensen, Naomi Watts and Vincent Cassel. The festival will close with Wes Anderson's The Darjeeling Limited on 01 November starring Jason Schwartzman, Owen Wilson and Adrien Brody.

Said festival director, Sandra Hebron: “In a very strong year for world cinema, we are delighted to be able to present such a wide ranging and high quality programme of films and special events, in which work by internationally renowned directors sits comfortably alongside that from many exciting new talents. We look forward to welcoming filmmakers, audiences and press and industry delegates alike to our two week celebration of the best, most creative and original films of the year.”

London Film Festival website

Friday, September 07, 2007

Around the world: Honolulu and Geneva

Lots of instigating news have come through our newswires lately. If you happen to be in Hawaii, pop around the Contemporary Museum in Honolulu to see Phantasmagoria: Specters of Absence which runs until 25 November.

It brings together 13 international artists including Christian Boltanski, Jim Campbell, Michel Delacroix, Laurent Grasso, upcoming 02art4 artist Jeppe Hein, TCM collection artist William Kentridge, Rafael Lozano-Hemmer, Teresa Margolles, Oscar Muñoz, Julie Nord, Rosângela Rennó, and Regina Silveira who use ephemeral means in their work such as fog, reflection, shadows, and vapors. The exhibition title refers to 18th-and 19th-century entertainments created by “magic lanterns” and rear-screen shadow projections.

These precursors of the modern film projector were used to stage dancing specters and other frightening theatrical effects for their audiences. The exhibition draws on this rich theatrical tradition to reframe questions of absence and loss, death and the afterlife around contemporary issues.

I was very impressed by the still of Rosangela Rennó's contribution to the show:


Back in Europe, the Biennial of Moving Images takes place from 12 to 20 October 2007 in Geneva. Founded in 1985 as the “International Video Week,” the Biennial of Moving Images (BIM, as it is known by its initials in French) is one of the oldest and most important events in Europe devoted to artists’ films. From the start, the Biennial has highlighted the increasingly numerous and creative crosscurrents that exist between film, the contemporary arts and mass media.

So a great chance to check out what's happening in the world of art cinema that is not likely to come to any theatre near you, ever!

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

YouTube: Nam June Paik's Electronic Moon #2 (1969)

Open Artist Roundtable - Video Art in the Age of the Internet

If you happen to be in New York, check this out:

Perpetual Art Machine Open Artist Roundtable
"Video art in the age of the internet"
Thursday September 6, 2007,
8-9:30pm

Chelsea Art Museum
556 West 22nd Street
New York, NY 10011

The [PAM] founders will be hosting an open roundtable discussion on September 6th to analyze the current state and future of the medium of video art and the emergence of new artistic communities that question theauthority and connoisseurship of traditional systems of 20th century art. What is the role and future of video art in this very exciting time? What are the current transformations in modes of creation and distribution of video art in the early 21st century? The possibilities seem endless as opensource and creative commons communities thrive, allowing for projects like [PAM] to be made possible. Several experts will be present to address these topics.

Roundtable participants include:

Lisa Baldini is an independent curator and the Social Networking Manager for Deep Focus.
Peer Bode is an artist, electronic arts pioneer and the Co-Director of IEA at Alfred University
G.H. Hovagimyan is an artist, theorist and editor of Thing.net
Chris Borkowski is an artist, Guggenheim museum Intranet engineer and [PAM] co-founder
Raphaele Shirley is an artist, new media specialist and [PAM] co-founder
Lee Wells is an artist, curator and [PAM] co-founder

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Vote for your favourite non-English film

Another day, another list of favourite films. The folks from the blog Edward Copeland on Film are requesting votes for the best non-English films so if you want to have your say, go here.

Friday, August 31, 2007

Venice sighting: Vanessa Redgrave


Adding a touch of real class to the red carpet...

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Venice opens with British film

The 64th annual Venice Film Festival opened yesterday with the usual crowds gathering to see the actors of the British film Atonement, the opening number of this year's edition. Early reports claim that the film got a strong reception.

One of the curios of this year's festival is the return of Peter Greenaway, who will be showing his new film Nightwatching, which revolves around Rembrandt's most famous work. Greenaway has an obsession with 19th century Holland, his residence country of many years.




Another curio is the fact that Greg Araki (pictured) will preside the Jury of the Orizzonti section and one of the people serving under Araki's chairing is documentarian Frederick Wiseman plus a few other international names. That's one of the interesting things about festivals, you get the most unlikely types under the same roof.

That said, the 2007 edition is markedly dominated by Anglophone cinema this year, which could indicate that the organisation of the event is aiming squarely at the commercial prospects of the event rather than artistic and national variety.

Saturday, August 25, 2007

Vagalume video festival

Vaga-Lume, which means glowworm, is a yearly video art festival that takes place in Porto Alegre, the southernmost Brazilian capital of Porto Alegre. I'm taking part of this year's edition as an invited artist with the videos Video Graffiti and The art of video art. The festival starts on Monday and runs until 6 September.




Friday, August 24, 2007

Helvetica, the film

On the jacket of my copy of Virginia Woolf's book Flush, her biography of the poet Elizabeth Barrett Browning's aristocratic pet cocker spaniel (a great read, whose success displeased Virginia), there is a great quote by the author taken from a lecture she gave in Oxford in 1928:

"What is meant by "reality"? It would seem to be something very erratic, very undependable—now to be found in a dusty road, now in a scrap of newspaper in the street, now a daffodil in the sun."

And of course it can also be found right under a writer, or filmmaker's, nose as the success of the documentary Helvetica seems to prove. A film about a font sounds like an unlikely subject but apparently everyone wants to see Gary Hustwit's itinerant film. Me too, I'm dying to see it now, after hearing so much about it. Hopefully I'll be able to get a seat next time it comes to London on 7 September at the ICA.

Here you can find whether it's screening anywhere near you.

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Video art: Art of Noise: Beat Box

Streaming: winners of Aarau festival

The winners of the One Minute Internationales Film & Videofestival in Aarau, Switzerland, which took place last weekend and whose programme included my video Video Graffiti, have been posted online and you can watch them here.

Friday, August 17, 2007

Reviewe: Mon oncle d'Amérique (My American Uncle) (1980)

I've just published a DVD review of Alain Resnais's My American Uncle. Check it out and see this film. It's a wonderful piece of cinema.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Trailer: 5,000 Fingers of Dr T (1953)

I saw this film once and it's one of the most delirious musicals ever made - apparently it was a resounding flop - too imaginative for the family audiences this kind of film would have been aimed at. If anyone ever finds a Pal DVD version, please write to me. I'd love to own a copy.

Sight and Sound

Sight and Sound magazine is celebrating its 75th anniversary with a list of 75 'hidden gems', or films that generally don't make it into official 'hot 100' type lists. The list is print-exclusive but it can be found here. The magazine's website has an interview made by Amy Taubin with Gus Vant Sant focusing on Andy Warhol's influence on his work.

Monday, August 13, 2007

Nostalgia: Blondie, Heart of Glass

New on Kamera: DVD reviews

More good stuff on Kamera, the website I edit. There's a review of Cassavetes Directs, one of the latest releases on Kamera Books. We also have a fresh round-up of some of the latest DVD releases, which includes Satyajit Ray's The Chess Players, Bobcat Goldwaith's Sleeping Dogs and Tommy O'Have's Billy's Hollywood Screen Kiss.

I have found clips and trailers of the films as well. Enjoy them.






Friday, August 10, 2007

Béla Tarr and Mike Figgis

Artificial Eye has rung in to tell me that film director Béla Tarr (pictured) will be in conversation with Jonathan Romney after a screening of Tarr's 2o0o film Werckmeister Harmonies on 14 August (Tuesday) at 6.10pm at the Renoir Cinema. The Hungarian director's latest film is called The Man From London and includes indie heroine Tilda Swinton in the cast. According to IMDB, the film will be next seen at the Toronto Film Festival in September. So this London screening is a rare chance to see a Tarr film on the big screen.

I have also learned that
the artistic director of the theate company Complicite, Simon McBurney, will talk about his film work as both actor and director with director Mike Figgis on 15 September. The interview will be illustrated with film clips, including Weather Patterns his short film made for the 2006 London Film Festival and a preview extract from his new film of Measure for Measure. Early booking is recommended because events at the Barbican tend to get booked up very fast.

Thursday, August 09, 2007

Selma e Denise on YouTube

I couldn't believe my luck today when I casually searched a video that I saw years ago at the Mix Festival in São Paulo, Selma & Denise, a parody of Thelma & Louise, and found it! It's hilarious and stars Marcelona, a punk-drag club celeb from São Paulo.

Enjoy it...

Saturday, August 04, 2007

Video: meet William Kamkwamba

I just published a post on the alternative blog I contribute to about William Kamkwamba,a 19-year-old Malawian inventor who at the age of 14 built a wind mill with the instructions he found in a book. Read it here.

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Cronenberg's Eastern Promises to open 51st London Film Festival

The 51st London Film Festival has announced that this year’s Festival will open on Wednesday 17th October with David Cronenberg’s Eastern Promises.

The London-set thriller, written by Steven Knight (Dirty Pretty Things), reunites David Cronenberg with Viggo Mortensen who worked with his in History of Violence, and also stars Naomi Watts, Vincent Cassel and Armin Mueller-Stahl.

The plot centres on the mysterious and ruthless Nikolai (Mortensen), who is tied to one of London’s most notorious organised Russian crime families. A harrowing chain of murder, deceit and retribution is put in motion when he crosses paths with Anna (Watts), an innocent midwife, trying to right a wrong she accidentally uncovers.

Said David Cronenberg: "I’m thrilled to be returning to the scene of the crime. Eastern Promises is the first film I’ve ever shot entirely away from my home in Canada, and it makes perfect sense that it is set in London, home of so many of my most potent film influences."

Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Antonioni dies at 94

Just as we were all mourning Bergman's death, we found out that Michelangelo Antonioni (Blow Up, L'Eclisse) died at 94 last night. Alongside Bergman, he was one of the last living cinema greats, a beacon of Italian cinema when it was the forefront of artistic invention. He will be much missed.

Monday, July 30, 2007

Ingmar Bergman dies at 89

Reuters has reported that Swedish film director Ingmar Bergman died today at the age of 89 at his home on Faro Island in the Baltic Sea.

What can we say? The film world has lost of one of its greatest and kindest maestros and he will be much missed by film lovers world over.

Limite: close reading and clips

Limite is a film by Mario Peixoto, who was twenty-two years old when he made it in 1931. Influenced by Soviet cinema at the time, Peixoto was looking for an aesthetic of pure cinema and created one of the great masterpieces of poetic cinema, perhaps not so well-known like its European equivalents because it was made in South America. Here's a link to a close reading of the film with lots of pictures which gives a good idea about its content. Brazilian film director Walter Salles (Motorcycle Diaries) gave a masterclass about Limite at the last Cannes festival to celebrate the film's print restoration so hopefully it will be getting a DVD release in the near future.


And here are some fragments of Limite found on YouTube:










Wednesday, July 25, 2007

YouTube: 100 Movies, 100 Quotes, 100 Numbers

Alonso Mosley is a librarian and media aficionado, the man behind the entertainment web directory, The La-La Land Library. Sourcing from his amazing archiving skills and knowledge, Mosley constructed this parody of all the "100" list specials that the American Film Institute keeps putting out, which finds in Britain its equivalent in Channel 4. Have fun trying to guess which films the clips are from.

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Valkyrie's shooting starts in Berlin

The long-standing, unabating cinematic fascination with Hitler gains a new lease of life as the shooting of the Tom Cruise-starred Nazi flick Valkyrie started in Germany last week. United Artists Entertainment LLC describes the film as "a suspense thriller based on the true story of the daring German officers’ plot to assassinate Hitler in 1944."



Directed by Bryan Singer (“The Usual Suspects,” “Superman Returns,” “X Men,” “X2: X-Men: United”) and written by Academy Award®-winning screenwriter Christopher McQuarrie (“The Usual Suspects,” “The Way of the Gun”) and Nathan Alexander, “Valkyrie” reunites Singer and McQuarrie for the first time since their 1995 thriller “The Usual Suspects.”

Tom Cruise, who hasn't looked this good (see pictures) in quite a long time, heads an international cast as Col. Claus von Stauffenberg, the aristocratic German officer who led the attempt to bring down the Nazi regime and end the war by planting a bomb in Hitler’s bunker. Also starring are Kenneth Branagh (“Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets”), Bill Nighy (“Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End”), Tom Wilkinson (“In the Bedroom”), Carice van Houten (“Black Book”), Eddie Izzard (“Ocean’s Thirteen”), Christian Berkel (“Black Book”), Thomas Kretschmann (“King Kong”), and Terrence Stamp (“Billy Budd,” “Superman,” “Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace”).



The “July 20 Plot” on Hitler’s life is one the least known episodes of World War Two. Severely wounded in combat, Colonel Claus von Stauffenberg returns from Africa to join the German Resistance and help create Operation Valkyrie, the complex plan that will allow a shadow government to replace Hitler’s once he is dead. But fate and circumstance conspire to thrust Stauffenberg from one of many in the plot to a double-edged central role. Not only must he lead the coup and seize control of his nation’s government, he must kill Hitler himself.

The film is slated for a summer 20008 release.

Sunday, July 22, 2007

Manda Bala (Send a Bullet): interview with producer Joseph Salomon Frank

The hype has been building for a while and Manda Bala, a documentary about corruption and kidnapping in Brazil which won Sundance's Grand Jury Prize this year, is slated for a 17 August release in the US - no other dates scheduled yet, according to IMDB. The film has been translated as Send a Bullet, which is a literal translation from the original Portuguese title, but a more precise translation would be 'bite the bullet'. Never mind. Chief magazine has published a lengthy interview with producer Joseph Salomon Frank, which you can read here.

Friday, July 20, 2007

Screening: Glauber Rocha's A Idade da Terra (The Age of Earth)

Rare screening alert! Italian director Michelangelo Antonioni said that in Brazilian Cinema Novo director Glauber Rocha's The Age of Earth ‘each scene is a lesson in how modern cinema should be made.’




After stints in Cuba, the United States and Europe, in 1980 Rocha returned to Brazil to make the film, which was his last. This monumental culmination of his career is an urgent ‘anti-symphony’ intended to reinvent Brazilian cinema. Originally, the 16 reels of the film were to be presented in a random order. The frenzied feast of allegories and symbols defied rational reality and sought to ‘resist the classification of colonial anthropology’.

The Age of Earth will be screened at the Tate Modern in London tomorrow, 21/7, at 7pm.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Free film screenings: South London Gallery

As part of a season called THE WEASEL, which runs until 29 July at the South London Gallery, there's a free programme of films, which are:

MAXI GEIL!: NAUSEA II, 2005
60 mins, shown daily at 1.30pm
Maxi Geil!’s ‘porn-rock opera’ Nausea II is a humorous musical based around the sex industry, and the amusing similarities between the glamour and shock of both the art world and porn industry. The film combines disenchantment with contemporary desires with a wistful return to old-fashioned song and dance routines.

IAIN FORSYTH & JANE POLLARD:
MAKE ME YOURS AGAIN, 2007
30mins, shown daily at 3.30pm
Make Me Yours Again is an unscripted portrait of young people talking about love and loss, using homemade ‘mix tapes’ as a trigger. Made during a residency in New Zealand, this work continues Forsyth & Pollard’s Precious Little series.

WILHELM SASNAL: THE RIVER, 2006
20 mins, shown daily at 5pm
The River, inspired by Pare Lorentz’s script for a film of the same name, began with the commission of several New York bands to create music to accompany Lorentz’s poetry. The resulting documentary shows gritty footage of the studio sessions.

South London Gallery

YouTube: Clip of Todd Haynes' Bob Dylan bio leaks to the web

The much-anticipated Bob Dylan film Todd Haynes has directed with Cate Blanchett, among many others, playing Dylan, I'm Not There, seems to be finally upon us. It was completed last month and is due for a September U.S release. A clip showing Blanchett's Dylan having a conversation with Allen Ginsberg through the window of a car is on YouTube:



Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Lesbian attack US epidemic

Not even Russ Meyer or John Waters could have thought of a plot like this - but Fox News can. Apparently the United States are ridden with gangs of lesbians attacking people in the streets. Let's hope they kick the ass of all those bullies who gave sissy boys a bad time at school.

Friday, July 13, 2007

Woody Allen starts shooting in Barcelona

Woody Allen's New York films are definitely a thing of the past. After London, the American director has moved on to Barcelona, where he started shooting his new work, 'Midnight in Barcelona'. The financiers must have been keen on capitalising on the city's frothy reputation and made sure its name got into the title!

According to a press release that arrived through The Filter's wires today, crowds gathered in Barceloneta 'hoping for a glimpse' of cast members Scarlett Johansson, Penelope Cruz and Javier Bardem.

At a press conference held in Barcelona on 02 July, Allen expressed his enthusiasm for the project, having spent previous weeks location scouting in the city: 'I hope I can present Barcelona to the world as I see it, the same way I presented Manhattan to the world as I saw it with my eyes', he said.

Cruz and Bardem are old film mates, having starred together in the 1992 film 'Jamon, Jamon' directed by Bigas Luna.

Allen's latest Hollywood muse Scarlett Johansson, who has previously worked on projects including 'Match Point' and 'Scoop' with Allen, arrived in Barcelona early last week for filming.

While details of the film have been kept well under wraps Allen has said of his latest project 'I want to write a love letter to Barcelona and from Barcelona to the world.' Very vague indeed. I personally won't hold my breath for anything coming from Allen, whose films I always found a tad too middle class for my liking, as well as wordy but without much to say.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Streamfest 2007

If you happen to be near Galatina in Italy, check this out:

Monday, July 09, 2007

Slowtime publishes list of selected artists

The list of artists selected to take part of Slowtime 2007, including yours truly, has been published. See it here.

Wednesday, July 04, 2007

Reminder: Screening of Stella Polare

Hello everyone, just a quick post to remind you all of tomorrow's screening of Stella Polare, Kamera's first public screening, which will take place at the Fleapit in Columbia Rd, E2, London. Hope to see you all there. Entry is free.

Friday, June 29, 2007

Paris is burning (itself out)

Paris, Paris, Paris. Were it not enough to have to read about Paris Hilton everywhere, it seems like the film world is having a little love affair with the French capital of the same name as the Hilton one. I caught the virus and published a review of Paris Mon Amour, another unrefutable evidence of cinematic Paris renaissance, not to mention the resurrection of French female icons like Edith Piaf in La Vie En Rose and the recently confirmed, yet untitled biopic of Coco Chanel, to be played by Audrey Tatou.

Zoe Cassavetes' (the daughter of John) directorial debut, Broken English, which opened in the U.S. last week, sees a love-seeking Parker Posey go to Paris à la Sarah Jessica Parker in Sex and the City with a French boyfriend (Melvil Poupaud) only to find that she was all right by herself in the first place (sounds familiar and, well, very clichèd). You can watch the trailer here.

Julie Delpy's debut, which did well at Cannes in terms of distribution and is slated to open in the UK on 31 August, is called 2 Days in Paris. You can watch an interview with Delpy talking about her film here.

Bon weekend.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Fresh Moves launch at the ICA

Tank TV is launching on Thursday, 28/6, at the ICA in London, its compilation DVD of artist's films called Fresh Moves. So what is it about? I'll let Tank TV do the talking:





"Showcasing new moving image work since 2003, tank.tv presents its first DVD anthology. This collection contains 24 film and video pieces by 24 UK based artists, each around three minutes long, and reflects the creativity, innovation and wide variety of subject matter for which www.tank.tv has become known and respected. It also includes five new, specially commissioned interviews pieces between feted curators and artists.
Fresh Moves was compiled by a panel that included Hans Ulrich Obrist, director of the Serpentine Gallery, and Stuart Comer, curator of film and video at Tate Modern. Turner Prize winner Jeremy Deller and infamous philosopher Slavoj Žižek both make an appearance in the series of interviews.
The DVD features recent work from some of the most important artists working in moving images today, such as Cerith Wyn Evans, Daria Martin, Runa Islam, Spartacus Chetwynd and Andrew Kötting, as well as emerging artists like Torsten Lauschmann, Anja M. Kirschner and David Blandy. Rather than a comprehensive overview, Fresh Moves aims to provide an anthology encompassing animation, fictional narrative, digital film, montage and installation-based film work. The works explore a wide variety of subjects - from politics to identity and aesthetic practices, all tempered with a healthy measure of humour - and so celebrate not just the artists featured, but the art of moving images as a whole."

Sunday, June 24, 2007

Sheila E, she's always going to be the best

I bumped into this TV commercial Sheila E did in the 1980s for a Japanese electronics company. So charming!


Saturday, June 23, 2007

The art of video art becomes a hit on archive.org

My latest video, The Art of video art, the one you can see on the sidebar of this page, is one of the top five downloads from the Prelinger Archive Mash-ups this week. It was downloaded 333 times last week. The total number of downloads so far is 1,441. I'm utterly surprised as I have done nothing but upload it. Cool.

Friday, June 22, 2007

Interview with Anthea Kennedy and Ian Wiblin

Check out the interview I made with Anthea Kennedy and Ian Wiblin about their film Stella Polare, which is the subject of Kamera.co.uk's first screening on 05 July, which I curated.




Thursday, June 21, 2007

News from Shortfilm.de

My friends who publish the website Shortfilm.de have written to say the site has recently been updated. There's an article about Lightcone's 25th anniversary, Leuven's short films DVD, and Hidden Treasures. Check them out.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Ousmane Sembene, Senegalese filmmaker, dies at 84

It just came to our attention at Kamera that Ousmane Sembene, the Senegalese filmmaker and pivotal figure of African post-colonial cinema, died at his home in Dakar, Senegal, on 9 June. He was 84 and one of the finest directors in the world.
Sembene was born in 1923 in the Casamance region of southern Senegal. At 14 he moved to Dakar and then to France. His experience as a docker in Marseilles furnished him with the material for one of his books, the acclaimed The Black Docker (1956). His film career stretched back to the 1960s as an expansion of a literary career. He turned to film because he saw in the medium a potential to reach more people.

"Black Girl" (1965), his debut feature, is seen by many as the first African film. It combines realism and traditional African narrative to tell the story of Diouana, a young woman who commits suicide after traveling to Europe with her French employers. This is a theme he pursued in his films: the tension between tradition and modernity and women's role in society. He exposed colonial damage with tenderness and a profound respect for African culture.

His last film, Molade (2004), dealth with the subject of female circumcision, a heavy subject by any account but which Sembene managed to handle with typical warmth and humour.

Pier Paolo Pasolini

I have published an article about Pier Paolo Pasolini, one of my favourite film directors ever, here+. This is in connection with a new DVD boxset launched by my chums at Tartan and it also includes two super rare documentaries where you can catch some action by Pasolini himself. A must-must-must-have.


Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Watch: John Cassavetes

There’s no such thing as a “good actor.” What it is, you know, is an extension of life. How you’re capable of performing in your life, that’s how you’re capable of performing on the screen.
John Cassavetes

To celebrate the re-release of Cassavetes's Opening Night (1977) on 15 June at the NFT, I did a bit of trawling around YouTube for Cassavetes clips and we found there is quite a lot there. The film tells the story of a famous actress (played by his wife Gena Rowlands) who, after viewing the accidental death of a devoted fan, re-examines her professional and personal relationships.


Rowlands speaks:





London hotel scene in Husbands (1970)

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

The art of video art selected to Slowtime 2007 - Quicktime as an artistic medium

One of my new videos, The art of video art has been selected to screen at Slowtime 2007 - Quicktime as an artistic medium

Monday, June 04, 2007

Screening: Stella Polare

I have curated a screening for Kamera.co.uk, the independent film website I edit, which will take place on 05 July at the Fleapit on Columbia Rd in London's E2 (the Sunday flower market road). The first programme is dedicated to the feature film Stella Polare (DV, 76', 2006) by London-based directors Anthea Kennedy and Ian Wiblin who I had the pleasure of meeting at the European Media Art Festival in Germany in 2006. It's a very poetic DV feature dealing with memory, metaphysics and psychogeography. I love it. We have set up a page with all the information so please take a look. It will be great to see you there. Entry is free.

Sunday, June 03, 2007

News: Video Graffiti selected for One Minute festival in Switzerland

One of my latest videos, Video Graffiti, has been selected for a Swiss video festival dedicated to works lasting up to 60 seconds. More info when the programme is ready in mid-July.

Miranda July in London

Performance artist and writer, director and star of the quirky film, Me and You and Everyone We Know, which won a special jury prize at the Sundance Film Festival and the Camera d'Or at Cannes in 2005, Miranda July (pictured), will be in London tomorrow (4 June) being interviewed live at the Serpentine Gallery in connection with her short stories book, No one belongs here more than you. July will also be reading from her book. At 8:30pm, free.

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Mike Figgis detained for five hours for 'shooting a pilot'

Another terrorism paranoia involuntary comedy. British film director Mike Figgis (Leaving Las Vegas) spent five hours in the pleasant company of LA airport security staff after saying he was coming to town to 'shoot a pilot', which in film and television speak means, obviously, a test programme. But since security staff in the land of cinema don't know the jargons of the business, - and pilot by now is not really a jargon anymore - they thought it wise to look the term up, just in case.

Read more +

One Minute videos

If you happen to be in London next Sunday check out this screening of one-minute videos by contemporary artists, curated by Kerry Baldry, which will be held at:

Cogcollective
at 4pm, on Sunday 3rd June 2007
in the Basement, CANDID ARTS TRUST, 3 Torrens St, London, EC1V 1NQ

The screening will include work by:

Kerry Baldry, Steven Ball, Gordon Dawson, Claudia Digangi, Andy Fear, Steve Hawley, Nick Herbert, Riccardo Iacono, Fil Ieropoulos and Lilly Zinan Ding, Hilary Jack, Esther Johnson, Tina Keane, Deklan Kilfeather, David Leister, Lynn Loo, Katherine Meynell, Claire
Morales, Martin Pickles, Stuart Pound, Laure Prouvost, Eva Rudlinger, Philip Sanderson, Erica Scourti, Unconscious Films, Phillip Warnell, Mark Wigan.

Sunday, May 27, 2007

VIDEO WALLS

I love them. Don't you?


Friday, May 25, 2007

Screening: Conrad and Butler Take a Vacation by Noah Baumbach

A short film was made by Noah Baumbach in 2000, Conrad And Butler Take A Vacation, was included in a DVD edition of Baumbach's Kicking and Screaming (1995) released by Criterion. It is miles away from the highly produced films Baumbach has written (The Life Aquactic with Steve Sissou (2004), The Squid and The Whale (2005), which he also directed). In fact it looks quite drab, but that's part of the humour pursued in this short film. The writing in this comedy about two friends on vacation, one of whom has recently divorced, is very good. The simplicity of Conrad And Butler Take A Vacation is very engaging and it has a suave aura of nostalgia about it.





Thursday, May 24, 2007

Brazilian Novelle Vague, Herzog and Punk cinema

There's quite a selection of film events coming up in London. First and foremost, I can't recommend enough the season of Glauber Rocha films that will take place at the Tate Modern in London between 9 June and 28 July. Rocha, the leading light of Cinema Novo was, roughly speaking, Brazil's equivalent of Godard. Even though the former died young at the age 42 in 1981, his legacy is enormous and includes masterpieces such as Black God, White Devil (1964) and Antonio das Mortes (1969, pictured), which are all included in the Tate Modern's of programme.

Another iconoclastic director whose films will be shown in London in June is Werner Herzog. The ICA is hosting a season called The Worlds of Werner Herzog between 9 and 30 June, including recent films such as The Wild Blue Yonder (2005), Wheel of Time (2003), The White Diamond (2004) and Grizzly Man (2005), among others. More info from the ICA website.

Elsewhere the Barbican centre is exploring the development of the punk and post-punk movements through a selection of UK and US features and documentaries called Panick Attack! These include Derek Jarman's The Last of England (1988) and John Waters's Female Trouble (1974), to name but a few. More info from here.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Vik Muniz

Vik Muniz is a Brazilian born artist who's been living in New York since the early 80s. He's a recent discovery for me, but I have become quite interested in his works of late, especially his conceptualisation of illusion and truth. His final medium is photography, but his work is much more than photography. He's also a great raconteur as the video below testifies, a rare thing in the art world.

Vik Muniz's TED talk +

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

New video: The art of video art

Last week I completed a new video, called The art of video art, cobbled together with archive footage from the Prelinger Archives. It's playing in a loop in the right side bar and expresses exactly my idea of what video art is about.

Monday, May 21, 2007

Parents sue school over Brokeback Mountain + Brokeback to the Future

Via ArtThreat: A substitute teacher in Chicago who showed Brokeback Mountain to elementary children is now facing a lawsuit by one child's grandparents of $500,000. Huh?

On the subject of gay cowboys, here's a funny send-up of Back to the Future, re-titled Brokeback to the Future. And it's clocked so far an amazing 4,395,088 views.

Saturday, May 19, 2007

YouTube, digital Vaudeville

"I was suddenly struck by the ways that YouTube represents for the early 21st century what Vaudeville represented in the early 20th century."

Read article +

Thursday, May 17, 2007

São Paulo NO LOGO

Artthreat.net has published an article reporting on the São Paulo's administration's decision to ban billboards to unclutter the city. What a fantastic initiative! "City officials in this metropolis of 11 million passed legislation banning billboards, neon signs and electronic panels as of the new year, and the effects of the law have begun to sink in. Billboards have been stripped of their commercial clothing, the stark nakedness of the abandoned frames reminding passers by of the once stolen public space now reclaimed", wrote the online mag. The article links to a Flickr slide show by Tony de Marco showing the empty signs, a beautiful look at the possibility of a world without ubiquitous advertising.

Cannes 2007 opens

The 60th edition of the Cannes Film Festival opened yesterday and footage has already popped up on YouTube, with this clip of the opening ceremony, which looks a bit like the Oscars, actually. That is, grand and cheesy.

The star of the opening day was Norah Jones (pictured) for her starring role in Wong Kar-wai's English language debut, My Blueberry Nights. The word is that it is up against Quentin Tarrantino's Death Proof and the Coen Brother's No Country for Old Men as a contender for the top prize.



Wednesday, May 16, 2007

The Battle of Algiers

The Battle of Algiers (Gillo Pontecorvo, Algeria/Italy, 1966), which is currently playing theatrically in the UK, was chosen by Guardian readers as their fifth favourite foreign film of all time. Here's the Guardian's comment on the choice:

You could argue that no modern movie has had more political influence. For the tension in this dramatised documentary has been employed in the training and the inspiration of real-life terrorists opposed to occupying forces. Pontecorvo used people who had known the real war in Algeria - from all sides - and you can tell yourself you are seeing the "true" face of outrage. But, in fact, the picture is artfully made in a black-and-white that apparently appeals to Guardian readers a lot. Above all, this reminds us that "real" coverage of terrible events is itself a political weapon. (DT)

The film has been re-released to commemorate the 50th Anniversary of the events depicted in it. The winner of numerous awards, including a BAFTAUN Award and both the Golden Lion and the FIPRESCI Award at the 1966 Venice Film Festival, director Gillo Pontecorvo’s highly acclaimed masterpiece is regarded as one of modern cinema's finest achievements.

Set during the 1954 to 1962 Franco-Algerian conflict, The Battle of Algiers authentically recreates the pivotal political events that took place in the city of Algiers between 1954 and 1957. In an attempt to end French colonialism, which had been in place since 1830, in 1954 the Algerian National Liberation Front (FLN) began a war of liberation, using terrorism to highlight the plight of the Algerian people to the rest of the world. In response to the escalating terrorist violence in the city of Algiers, the French government sent in an armed force of paratroopers to crush the uprising. Authorised to use whatever force and methods were believed to be necessary in bringing an end to the revolution, the actions of the French military led to a regrettable catalogue of atrocities being committed by those on both sides of the conflict.


Watch trailer of The Battle of Algiers +













Monday, May 14, 2007

Lars Von Trier's struggle with depression

The Filter was sad to hear at that one of its favourite European directors, Lars Von Trier, is going through a bout of depression which has thrown his future projects into uncertainty. According to an article issued by the Associated Press, Von trier said last Saturday said to the Danish newspaper Politiken that after his treatment for depression earlier this year he has been left like a "blank sheet of paper." His next planned project, but which now is indefinitely on hold, is a horror movie called Antichrist, which depicts Satan as the world's creator.

We hope Von Trier gets better soon.

Read more +

Von Trier has a comedy being released in the U.S on 23/5. It's called The Boss of it All. Here's the Danish trailer +

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Paris Hilton: the consensus

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Jodie Foster to play Leni Riefenstahl. Finally.

So it seems that finally the long-rumoured Leni Riefenstahl Hollywood biopic starring the recently outed-again Jodie Foster is going to get off the ground. The German director, who died at the age of 101 in 2003 and whose biggest contribution to the art of cinema was the stunning documentary about the 1936 Olympic Games in Berlin (Olympia), surely is superb biopic material and it is easy to see the attraction such a project holds to Foster (who actually does look like the young Riefenstahl). What remains to be seen is how much the film will focus on Riefenstahl's Nazi connections and - one can only wish - try to emulate her superb aesthetic sense.

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Make Internet TV

For all of you aspiring internet video bloggers, help is at hand from MakeinternetTV.org +

Thursday, May 03, 2007

Rose-strewen press release for La Vie En Rose

I just loved the lyricism in the press release for the upcoming film about France's 'little sparrow' Edith Piaf, called, you guessed it, La Vie En Rose (pictured). So here it goes:

"From Director Olivier Dahan comes the screen biography of legendary French singer Edith Piaf. Starring Marion Cotillard (A Good Year, A Very Long Engagement), LA VIE EN ROSE celebrates the extraordinary life of one of the world’s best-loved performers.

From the streets of the cutthroat Belleville district of Paris to the limelight of New York’s concert halls, Edith Piaf’s life was a constant battle to sing and survive, to live and love. Raised in bitter poverty, surrounded by hookers, pimps and petty criminals, Edith’s magical voice provided an escape, making her a star on both sides of the Atlantic.

Her passionate romances and friendships with some of the biggest names of the period – Yves Montand, Jean Cocteau, Charles Aznavour, Marlene Dietrich and world champion boxer Marcel Cerdan – made her a household name, as did her memorable live performances and beautiful renditions of songs heard across the globe: La Vie en Rose, Hymn To Love, Non Je ne Regrette Rien and many more. But despite her determination to deny her tragic destiny, the “Little Sparrow” – as she was known – flew so high that she could not fail to burn her wings" (italics are definitely mine!).

Verdict: sold!

La Vie en Rose will open in cinemas across the UK on 22 June 2007.



And here's the little sparrow in action:



Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Witchcraft at the Barbican + Polanski

The Barbican cinema in central London is showing on Sunday 06 May the legendary and infamous Häxan (Sweden 1922 Dir. Benjamin Christensen 104min). The film was banned in every country in Europe when first released in 1922. It was one of the first drama-documentaries, integrating fact and fiction, and Christensen's experimental style endeared it to the Surrealists. A brew of the horrific, gross, and darkly comedic, Häxan chronicles grave robbing, repressed eroticism, possessed nuns, and a satanic Sabbath, as the director asserts that the ‘witches’ of the Middle Ages suffered the same mass hysteria as did the mentally ill centuries later. Häxan retains a powerful and shocking contemporary resonance, and emerges as a moving, disturbing but ultimately liberating study of the persecution of the mentally ill, women, the poor and the elderly. Geoff Smith's (pictured) new score for Häxan further explores his pioneering approach to composition and performance that was exemplified in his recent scores for Faust and The Cabinet of Dr Caligari.


  • Still at the Barbican, the venue will be screening throughout May a bevy of Polanski films, including his first foray into cinema, the Novelle Vague-y Knife in the Water (1962).

Barbican film +

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Trailer: Strange Culture

Shown this year at Sundance and Berlin (no theatrical releases scheduled yet), Strange Culture deals with the nightmare of internationally-acclaimed artist and professor Steve Kurtz began when his wife Hope died in her sleep of heart failure. Police arrived, became suspicious of Kurtz’s art, and called the FBI. Within hours the artist was detained as a suspected 'bioterrorist' as dozens of agents in hazmat suits sifted through his work and impounded his computers, manuscripts, books, his cat, and even his wife’s body. Today Kurtz and his long-time collaborator Dr. Robert Ferrell, former Chair of the Genetics Department at the University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health, await a trial date.

The trailer makes the film look very promising and it stars Tilda Swinton and Peter Coyote as themselves.

Watch trailer +

Monday, April 30, 2007

Oberhausen launches Sherry Millner's restored Disaster

One of the highlights of the 53rd edition of the International Short Film Festival Oberhaunsen that starts this week (3-8 May) is a restored print of Sherry Millner's seminal Disaster. In 1975/76, while living in San Francisco, Millner produced what has been deemed the first situationist film made in the U.S.

Disaster, a two-screen, 30 minute, b & w Super-8 film, scripted and shot by Millner and Ernest Larsen, won a major prize at the Ann Arbor Film Festival. At the time, Hollywood was producing all-star blockbusters that depicted overwhelming disaster--like The Towering Inferno and Earthquake. Millner felt that the films exploited audiences’ ardent if repressed desire to see the present day metropolis torn to bits. Buried under such spectacular ruins was the real arena of disaster--so difficult to face--everyday life.

The quotidian--that panoply of humiliations (beginning with the alarm clock’s imperious summons each morning), routines, disciplines, distractions, and fantasies which sooner or later reconcile all of us to a regimen of delayed gratification. This was the site that needed to be excavated. Millner decided to take back the cinema for her own ‘cheapskate’ cinemascope disaster epic and to use two screens to animate the gulf that yawned between the two sites of catastrophe.

Further info +

+

An excerpt from the video 41 Shots by video Millner and Larsen.

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Interview: Julie Christie

(Embassy Pictures; Michael Gibson/Lionsgate Films)

Julie Christie comes out of hiding for Sarah Polley's debut feature Away From Her and gives an interview to the International Herald Tribune.

Read +

Monday, April 23, 2007

Reading tip

"The result is an utterly charming comedy of sexual manners that should do very well wherever audiences appreciate savvy dialogue and smart, observational filmmaking."

Full article +

Saturday, April 21, 2007

David Lynch Paris show

An article about David Lynch's show, The Deformation Man: David Lynch's Chimerical Universe of Metamorphosis, at the Fondation Cartier pour l'art contemporain to 27 May.



Friday, April 20, 2007

Trailer: Tell No One

I'm not really the biggest fan of police chases, but I have to admit to having enjoyed quite a lot this manhunt shown in the trailer of the upcoming French film Tell No One, based on the thriller by by Harlan Coben. The film is a due for a 15 June UK release.

Tell No One trailer +

Tell No One French site +

Cannes announces line-up for this year's festival

The line-up for the 2007 edition of the Cannes Film Festival was announced yesterday. "My Blueberry Nights" starring singer Norah Jones -- the first English language film from Wong Kar-Wai -- will open the 60th Cannes Film Festival. The singer stars in the story of a young woman who travels across America to find answers to her questions about the true meaning of love. Now, such a storyline sounds really boring, especially with the Starbucks-friendly voice that comes out of Jones' mouth. The festival takes place between 16 and 27 May and it will include the world premiere of Michael Moore's latest crockie, "Sicko."





Full list:

In Competition

"My Blueberry Nights," directed by Wong Kar-Wai
"Auf Der Anderen Siete," directed by Fatih Akin
"Un Veille Maitresse," directed by Catherine Breillat
"No Country For Old Men," directed by Joel & Ethan Coen
"Zodiac," directed by David Fincher
"We Own The Night," directed by James Gray
"Les Chansons D'Amour," directed by Christophe Honore
"Mogari No Mori," directed by Naomi Kawase
"Breath," directed by Kim Ki Duk
"Promise Me This," directed by Emir Kusturica
"Secret Sunshine," directed by Lee Chang-dong
"4 Luni, 3 Saptamini Si 2 Zile," directed by Christian Mungiu
"Tehilim," directed by Raphael Nadjari
"Stellet Licht," directed by Carlos Reygadas
"Persepolis," directed by Marjane Satrapi and Vincent Paronnaud
"Le Scaphandre et le Papillon," directed by Julian Schnabel
"Import Export," directed by Ulrich Seidl
"Alexandra," directed by Alexandre Sokourov
"Death Proof," directed by Quentin Tarantino
"The Man From London," directed by Bela Tarr
"Paranoid Park," directed by Gus Van Sant
"Izgnanie" (The Banishment), directed by Andrey Zvyagintsev

British director Stephen Frears will serve as the president of the Cannes competition jury and will be joined by actress Maggie Cheung from Hong Kong, actress Toni Collette from Australia, director and actress Maria de Medeiros from Portugal, director and actress Sarah Polley from Canada, director Marco Bellocchio from Italy, writer Orhan Pamuk from Turkey, director and actor Michel Piccoli from France, and director Abderramane Sissako from Mauritania.

Out of Competition

"Sicko," directed by Michael Moore
"Ocean's Thirteen," directed by Steven Soderbergh
"A Mighty Heart," directed by Michael Winterbottom

Midnight Screenings

"Boarding Gate," directed Olivier Assayas
"Go Go Tales," directed by Abel Ferrara
"U2 3D," directed by Catherine Owens and Mark Pellington

Special Screenings

"11th Hour," directed by Leila Conners Petersen and Nadia Conners
"The War," directed by Lynn Novick and Ken Burns
"Retour en Normandie," directed by Nicolas Philibert
"He Fengming," directed by Wang Bing

Un Certain Regard

"Le Reve de la Nuit d'Avant," directed by Valeria Bruni-Tedeschi
"Calle Santa Fe," directed by Carmen Castillo (first film)
"Munyurangabo," directed by Chung Lee Isaac (first film)
"Et Toi T'Es Sur Qui?" directed by Lola Doillon (first film)
"El Bano del Papa," directed by Enrique Fernandes and Cesar Charlone (first film)
"Bikur Hatizmoret," directedd by Eran Kolirin (first film)
"Mister Lonely," directed by Harmony Korine
"Magnus," directed by Kadri Kousaar (first film)
"Mang Shan," directed by Li Yang
"Mio Fratello E Figlio Unico," directed by Daniele Luchetti
"California Dreamin' (Nesfarsit)," directed by Christian Nemescu (first film)
"La Soledad," directed by Jaime Rosales
"L'Avocat de la Terreur," directed by Barbet Schroeder
"Les Pieuvres," directed by Celine Sciamma (first film)
"Am Ende Kommen Touristen," directed by Robert Thalheim
"Kuaile Gongchang," directed by Ekachai Uekrongtham

The Un Certain Regard jury includes head Pascale Ferran, along with Jasmine Trinca, Cristi Puiu, Kent Jones and Bian Qin and the Camera d'or jury for a film by a first time director will be headed by Pavel Longuine along with Julie Bertucelli, Clotilde Courau and Renato Berta.

Short Films in Competition

"Run," directed by Mark Alston (New Zealand)
"The Oate's Valor," directed by Tim Thaddeus Cahill (United States)
"The Last 15," directed by Antonio Campos (United States)
"Ah Ma" (Grandma), directed by Anthony Chen (Singapore)
"Resistance Aux Tremblements," directed by Olivier Hems (France)
"Ark," directed by Grzegorz Jonkajtys (Poland)
"Ver Llover," directed by Elisa Miller (Mexico)
"To Onoma Tou Spourgitiou," directed by Kyros Papavassiliou (Cypress)
"Spegelbarn" (Looking Glass), directed by Erik Rosenlund (Sweden)
"Het Zusje" (My Sister), directed by Marco Van Geffen (The Netherlands)
"My Dear Rosseta," directed by Yang Hae-hoon (South Korea)

La Cinefondation

"Aditi Singh," directed by Mickael Kummer (Le Fresnoy, France)
"Ahora Todos Parecen Contentos," directed by Gonzalo Tobal (Universidad del Cine, Argentina)
"Your Younger Daughter Rachel," directed by Efrat Corem (Sapir Academic College, Israel)
"Chinese Whispers," directed by Raka Dutta (Satyajit Ray Film & Television Institute, India)
"For the Love of God," directed by Joseph Tucker (NFTS, U.K.)
"Goyta," directed by Joanna Jurewicz (NYU, U.S.)
"Hable Stunden," directed by Nicolas Wackerbarth (DFFB, Germany)
"Minus," directed by Pavle Vuckovic (Fakultet Dramskih Umetnosti, Serbia)
"Pathways," directed by Hagar Ben-Asher (Minshar School, Israel)
"Imprudence," directed by Alexander Kugel (VGIK, Russia)
"A Reunion," directed by Hong Sung-hoon (KAFA, South Korea)
"Rondo," directed by Marja Mikkonen (Finnish Academy of Fine Arts, Finland)
"Way Out," directed by Chen Tao (Beijing Film Academy, China)
"Saba," directed by Therezaa Menezes and Gregorio Graziosi (FAAP University, Brazil)
"Triple 8 Palace," directed by Alexander Ku (NYU, U.S.)
"Vita Di Giacomo," directed by Luca Governatori (La femis, France)

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Video Links at the Tate

More on video art: the event I curated for the Tate Modern in London went really well and after a very busy spell, I managed to compile a few links to some of the works on display at the show.

Artist: Carlos Nader

(click on the video Carlos Nader)


Artist: Lucas Bambozzi

(Click on Works - Videos - I Have No Words)


Artist: Maria Lucia Cattani

(Click on 4d)


Artist: Roberto Berliner

(Click on Assista ao Filme, top right corner)

VideoBrasil in London

VideoBrasil, the country's leading catalyst of video art from the southern hemisphere, is coming to London for a one-day programme of electronic art and discussion (28 April at the ICA).

ICA +

Monday, April 16, 2007

Hibernator: prince of the petrified forest - final screening 29/4

This sounds like an interesting experiement.

Working with the legacy and personal myth of Walt Disney, cryogenically frozen at the point of death, London Fieldworks proposed his reincarnation and have created the animatronic Hexer, to stand in for his alter-ego and to star in their film prince of the petrified forest.

In the Upper Space at Beaconsfield a green-screen environment provides an installation and working animation studio for London Fieldworks. There sits the animatronic sculpture, a monstrous hybrid of Disney and his iconic characters, Bambi and Thumper. The chimera is called to perform for camera, the power of his actions modulated by light cues reported from the window on the back wall of the gallery.

The animation in progress draws inspiration from Felix Salten's anthropomorphic novel Bambi: A Life in the Woods, first published in 1928 and the source for Walt Disney's iconic 1942 animated feature film Bambi. But realised through the combined expertise of specialists in prosthetics and robotics, Hexer is a creature of his time and the landscapes he encounters are far from Disney's idealised forest.

Over the exhibition period of twenty eight days, Hexer's activity is digitally recorded by the artists and incorporated into their film, the process exposed to the public. The final day of the exhibition will culminate in the premiere of the completed film, and Hexer will return to slumber.

Closing Event: Final Film Screening
Date: Sunday 29 April
Time: 2pm

Full Screening followed by panel discussion with collaborators Steve Beard, Paul and Laura Carey, Bruce Gilchrist and Jo Joelson

Free entry but booking advisable. Call Beaconsfield on 020 7582 6465.


Beaconsfield Gallery +

London Fieldworks +

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Solta O Frango - Bonde Do Role

This Baile Funk music phenomenon has spawned its first brilliant act: Bonde Do Role. Their songs are great, irreverent, funny and prone to very imaginative use of Brazilian street Portuguese. And their videos are good too, like this City of God-ish Solta O Frango:

Friday, April 13, 2007

Clip: The Glamorous Life of Sachiko Hanai



"A riotous amalgam of political satire, apocalyptic comedy and steamy erotica, The Glamorous Life of Sachiko Hanai is an insanely entertaining example of the Japanese pink film (pinku eiga) genre, a popular form of erotic softcore cinema. Titillation is, of course, a primary goal, but due to Japan's censorship codes (no depiction of genitalia or penetration is allowed), creative storytelling is also important. When both factors are present, as in this memorably nutty offering, the result is particularly pleasurable. Sachiko Hanai (Emi Kuroda) is an escort who specializes in teacher-student scenarios (the film's delightfully apposite original title is Horny Home Tutor: Teacher's Love Juice). One day, after an energetic tutoring session, Sachiko adjourns to a nearby café. An argument between two men escalates, and she is shot between the eyes. Miraculously only dazed, she grabs a mysterious cylinder from the café floor, thus making off with a clone of George W. Bush's finger. And then things get really weird. Sachiko discovers odd psychic abilities and begins imagining various theories of the universe and multivalent philosophical speculations, all to the throb of techno. While she pursues arcane poststrucuturalist knowledge—and has intellectual intercourse with a political philosopher—a consortium of bad guys chase her in the hopes of recovering the cylinder. Raunchy and hilarious in equal measures, with a dash of smart political commentary, Mitsuru Meike's memorable feature will undoubtedly tickle you pink."

(From the notes of the San Francisco International Film Festival 2006 by Rod Armstrong)

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

300

..."like Baz Luhrmann’s Moulin Rouge, it’s post-cinema, and not created for the purpose of traditional entertainment, let alone edification. It’s onslaught filmmaking, the new form that’s self-defeating in its cacophony and nearly religious in its zealotry for its own form and mythos."

Read more +

YouTube tip: Fassinder's second short film, Das Kleine Chaos

Via Expanded Cinema: "Rainer Werner Fassbinder's second 16mm short--made while still a theatre director in Munich---shows the young filmmaker clearly under the influence of the French nouvelle vague [complete with a poster of Juliette Greco], yet already hinting at the recurring themes of his mature work. Theo (played by Christoph Roser, who financed the film in return for a staring role), Marite (Marite Greiselis), and Franz (played by Fassbinder) turn their love of American noir into a crime spree, even if one reflecting on the moral nature of violence and crime, and in typically Fassbinder fashion, the chaos of postwar culture [after breaking into a woman's house to rob her and putting a Wagner record on the phonograph, Fassbinder's character asks his hostage: "Do you love the Fuhrer?"]. Fassbinder himself appears under his frequent character alias of 'Franz'---inspired by his love of Alfred Doblin's novel 'Berlin Alexanderplatz.'

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Call for entry: OK.VIDEO MILITIA

The OK.Video Militia festival in Jakarta is accepting submissions until 15 May. Check out the regulations as there are some interesting categories.

OK.Video Militia