108的彩的网址local.gybsgdx.cn http://gybsgdx.cn/archive/entry/rss Reverse Shot en-us Copyright 2020 188金宝搏安全么In Solidarity http://gybsgdx.cn/archive/entry/2674/archive http://gybsgdx.cn/archive/entry/2674/archive feature Sun, 31 May 2020 00:00:00 -0400 11选5必中一个号 From our archives: writing on films that have been on our minds.

The Battle of Algiers

BPM [Beats Per Minute]

Cameraperson

The Color of Pomegranates

Do the Right Thing

High and Low

The House Is Black

Ice

Japanese Relocation

Maidan

Minority Report

Night and Fog

Ñores (sin señalar) (Misters—Without Blame)

Nothing but a Man

O'er the Land

Once There Was Brasilia

One Sings, the Other Doesn't

Saló

Taxi

This Is Not a Film

Timbuktu

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2串1购买计划Intermission http://gybsgdx.cn/archive/entry/2673/our_house_intermission http://gybsgdx.cn/archive/entry/2673/our_house_intermission feature Fri, 29 May 2020 00:00:00 -0400 Susannah Gruder Our House Intermission
11选5必中一个号 By Susannah Gruder

It would be an understatement to call BAM my home cinema. In reality, it’s my home-away-from-home. To get to the screening rooms, you enter the lobby (its vaulted ceiling and intricately patterned tile floor no less imposing than the building’s terra cotta Beaux Arts exterior) and into the cinemas on the far left side. Tucked on the opposite end of the lobby, however, inside a vestibule that opens onto the 2,100-seat Opera House, is a door that leads to my mom Christine’s office, where she works as the Theater Manager for BAM’s live productions (on hiatus along with all shows at the Cinema). She’s been at BAM for 32 years, and as a kid I’d visit her during the day before the evening’s performance began, running through the empty house, jumping over seats, pretending I belonged to a rich, possibly royal family, and that this was simply one of the rooms in my extravagant home. The box seats were my preferred spot for playing hide-and-seek with a friend or my little sister. I was on good terms with the stagehands, who’d occasionally let me ride in the genie lift as they set up for a performance by The Royal Shakespeare Company or Pina Bausch’s Tanztheater Wuppertal. For years I was too young to appreciate most of the artists who graced BAM’s stage, but my connection to the space itself was, and is, profound.

Now that I’ve matured a bit, the programming at the cinemas and theaters at BAM has become meaningful to me as well. I’ve seen so much at BAM that each moment in the lead-up to a film or performance has grown exceedingly familiar. I can picture Adam, the Cinema Manager, coming out to jovially report that “This is a sold-out show, so get cozy with your neighbor because every seat will be filled.” Or my mom’s voice coming through the lobby’s overhead speakers as the lights flash on and off, announcing that the performance will begin in ten minutes. And then there’s that split-second of darkness. In the cinema, it comes between the last trailer and the film you came for. In the theater, just after the house lights dim completely. It’s a feeling of being on the threshold of something unknowable—the last moment you can say to yourself that you’ve never seen what you’re about to see.

When BAM opened the Rose Cinemas in 1998, they were the first in the country to have a multiplex cinema within a performing arts center. What was once the Carey Playhouse, home to BAM’s smaller productions, became a movie house, with Cinema 3 maintaining the playhouse’s dramatic proscenium, a glorious remnant of its former self. BAM has a long history of converting theaters into cinemas, and vice versa. What is now BAM’s Harvey Theater a few blocks away on Fulton Street was once the Majestic. Built in 1904, the Majestic was a first-run movie theater between 1942 and 1968, and before that a vaudeville theater (not to be confused with the theater in the 2001 film, The Majestic, in which Jim Carrey plays a time-traveling screenwriter who helps to renovate a similarly decrepit movie house). It sat in disrepair until 1987, when BAM took ownership and turned it into a fully functioning theater, keeping its interior in a state of fossilized ruin. In 2013 the Harvey debuted their new Steinberg screen, which would host large-scale screenings of epic films like Black Panther and Star Wars. The Opera House itself has hosted screenings of films like Phantom Thread and Voyage of Time 11选5必中一个号with a live orchestra. All this shape-shifting has resulted in a comforting feeling of flux, affirming the notion that a cinema and a theater are one and the same, and the work that’s presented in each are of equal value.

This idea found its perfect expression for me one weekend in 2013 during BAM’s three-day festival Crossing Brooklyn Ferry, which brought together music, art, and film screenings across their various venues. At one point I wandered from a Julia Holter performance in the Opera House into a screening of Matt Wolf’s I Remember: A Film About Joe Brainard, which had already begun. (The festival was such that you were encouraged to step in and out of each event at will.) Wolf’s film features an audio recording of Brainard, the queer writer and artist reading his 1975 poem “I Remember,” interspersed with recollections from his friend and collaborator Ron Padgett. Brainard worked largely in collage, and the film itself becomes a sort of scrapbook of memories that commingle to create a unique portrait of the artist. “I remember the different ways people have of not eating their toast crust,” Brainard recites. “I remember when both arms of your theater seat have elbows on them / I remember (spooky) when all of a sudden someone you know very well becomes momentarily a total stranger.” It was a moment of discovery—of Brainard’s words, themselves a form of nostalgic self-collage; of his art, which appeared on-screen; and of the assemblage that Wolf had created from the fragments of Brainard’s life. It was also one of the first times I’d felt comfortable entering a film late, for it felt as though it could loop forever, gently summoning up memories that are meant to go in one ear and out the other.

Wolf’s mode of filmmaking spoke to me then, and continues to do so—as a writer, I relate to the way he deconstructs the lives of other artists, like Arthur Russell in Wild Combination, or of obsessive collectors, like Marion Stokes in his recent Recorder: The Marion Stokes Project, and uses these pieces to reassemble a faithful portrait. Filmmakers like Sam Green work similarly, and it was a 2013 performance of his “live documentary” The Love Song of R. Buckminster Fuller11选5必中一个号, a study of the inventor and futurist featuring live music from Yo La Tengo and live narration from Green at the Kitchen, that prompted me, fresh out of college, to “publish” my first attempt at film criticism on my now-defunct Tumblr. Perhaps it’s my generation’s penchant for sites like Tumblr and Pinterest that draw many of us to this kind of mixed-media, where seemingly disparate images and ideas can exist alongside one another, their juxtaposition at once chaotic and calming.

The notion that cinema can be an event on par with a live performance is something I believe even more firmly now that going to the movies is no longer an option under our stay-at-home restrictions. I’m relatively well-prepared for these conditions, having grown up with a weekly routine of visiting my local video stores—the higher-brow Cinematheque and Video Forum on 7th Avenue in Park Slope, where at 14 I’d rent films like Persona and Y tu mamá también to watch in my room with a glass of wine I’d surreptitiously poured; Blockbuster on 5th Avenue for sleepover-appropriate horror movies like The Omen and Cabin Fever; and the Brooklyn Public Library for episodes of The Avengers on VHS (the über-mod ’60s TV show, not the Marvel movies), which I’d watch with my dad on summer days.

More recently, however, I’d become familiar with the idea that certain films have to be seen in the theater. For most of my life, going to the movies was an activity to do with friends, and I’d never seen a movie alone (except for one instance when a friend got confused about movie times and left me on my own to miserably watch The Core.) The Park Slope Pavilion, with its bright purple seats, was a few blocks from my house, and the majority of my middle-school class would often be in attendance at films like Spiderman and Spiderman 2, Mean Girls, and Austin Powers in Goldmember. When I went to high school in Lower Manhattan, we’d go en masse to the Regal Battery Park to see Superbad and Casino Royale. My French class friends and I discovered Christophe Honoré’s Love Songs at the IFC Center somewhat by chance, sparking an obsession with his lyrics (and Louis Garrel). When I spent my junior year of college in Paris, I winced along with friends through Inland Empire in the salle Henri Langlois at the Cinémathèque Française, and frequented the tiny Le Desperado cinema in Saint-Germain-des-Prés, which mostly played American films we’d never heard of, like What’s New, Pussycat?11选5必中一个号 I remember the people I was with as clearly as the movies themselves.

Growing up, my dad would often tell me about how, when he was 14, he went to see Sergei Bondarchuk’s seven-hour War and Peace alone at the Ziegfeld, and that during the intermission they served champagne and caviar. I’ve always longed for this kind of experience, where going to the movies is as momentous as seeing a Broadway show. I didn’t quite receive that treatment during the intermission of Shoah (10 hours) at the Quad, or La Flor (14 hours) at NYFF, but I did develop a sense of endurance, and an enjoyment of coming to the theater by myself, that I hadn’t known before. Perhaps it’s because I’m still fairly new to film festivals, with my hopeful naiveté about Sundance and Tribeca still intact, but now, seeing three movies back to back, with 15-minute breaks in between, as I’ve done a few times now, is my idea of heaven. It turns out that catharsis on top of catharsis can be, in fact, a good thing—the emotional release tends to build exponentially for me. I soon began to seek out this feeling, returning to IFC for each episode of Kiarostami’s Koker Trilogy, even though I’d only intended to see one. I cried, alone, at the ending of each; I’d never been happier. Going to the movies with 11选5必中一个号people was always an event. But it was here, standing alone in tears outside the IFC, that I realized it could be significant, maybe even more so, when you’re on your own.

11选5必中一个号 I’ve been to these theaters so many times that I can reconstruct their interiors perfectly in my head—IFC, Film Forum, Regal Union Square, the Walter Reade, Metrograph, MoMI, Spectacle. There’s no space I know better, however, than BAM, its cinemas and theaters sitting together side by side, projecting a harmony between the seventh art and all the rest. My memories of the music, dance, and theater I’ve seen there remain as well, coexisting alongside those of the films—Mark Morris together with Chantal Akerman; Ivo van Hove next to Franco Rossi. All of these images work to form a patchwork that keeps me company while I, along with everyone else, wait on the threshold of whatever comes next—almost like waiting for the movie to begin.

Top: The Helen Carey Playhouse—now the BAM Rose Cinemas—pictured in 1907.

Bottom: Built in 1904, The Majestic—now BAM's Harvey Theater—which served as a first-run cinema and a vaudeville theater in Brooklyn's Fort Greene neighborhood.

Photos courtesy of the BAM Hamm Archives.

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202的彩的正确网址First Look 2020: New Nonfiction Shorts http://gybsgdx.cn/archive/entry/2672/first_look_2020_shorts http://gybsgdx.cn/archive/entry/2672/first_look_2020_shorts feature Wed, 27 May 2020 00:00:00 -0400 Emma Piper-Burket At the Museum Better Together
11选5必中一个号 Emma Piper-Burket on Four Stories: New Nonfiction Shorts

Four Stories: New Nonfiction Shorts was a shorts program scheduled to run at this year’s First Look Festival at Museum of the Moving Image on March 14, 2020. The lineup included: Derek Howard's The Harvesters—pictured above—which zeroes in on three Maasai men harvesting wild honey in the forests of Kenya, methodically and objectively documenting a process that has likely been carried out unchanged for generations; If We Say That We Are Friends, by Yaara Sumeruk, tackling the complicated legacy of apartheid in South Africa in vérité style through the story of a group of activists who invite wealthy, white Cape Town suburbanites to the townships for a meal and dialogue through their Dine with Khayelitsha supper club; When Two or Three, in which Carmine Grimaldi uses a close camera lens and visceral movement to share space and time with a pastor and his wife in the lonely company town of Bagdad Arizona; and Lina Rodriguez’s Aquí y allá, exploring the passages of time and memory in Chipaque, Colombia—where her family is from—in an intergenerational collage of audio, 16mm, and miniDV footage.

On the surface, the four films are vastly different in both subject matter and approach, yet an unexpected sense of unity forms when they are viewed together. The festival was officially canceled the day prior to the screening, so the films have not yet been shown as a program as intended. We will never know what associations and connections may have arisen out of the screening that weekend (Howard, Sumeruk, and Grimaldi were all scheduled to attend). In the days and weeks after, as the world went into quarantine, I had separate conversations over the phone with each of the four filmmakers, as well as with Eric Hynes, the festival’s programmer.

What emerged from these calls was a surprising commonality of practice and process. Below are excerpts of these conversations, focusing less on the films themselves than on the creative process that brought each of them into being. I've arranged the excerpts into a sort of rough dialogue, so that although we could not all meet in the same room, we can still try and catch a glimpse of the ideas that may have emerged.

If We Say That We Are Friends

Reverse Shot: I wonder if you can talk about your creative process: what are the steps—or are there steps—you go through for every project? Is there a process that's sort of standard or does it adapt to each project?

Derek Howard: I like to look at things almost through a mythic lens, how stories repeat themselves. I think that all the stories we hear or all the films we see are similar stories just retold in different ways. I'm always trying to contextualize things within a historical or anthropological or mythological context. I love the idea of genealogy stories: like where does the history of this come from? I love taking everyday characters and then trying to create this mythological context around them.

Yaara Sumeruk11选5必中一个号: I'm interested in how you make things that are invisible visible in the world, and then maybe because I'm interested in that theme this translates into the process of how I make the films. What I'm learning is the importance of creating from an emotion instead of creating to get to an emotion. I made this film from a deep emotion and desire to connect and share. I think it's important that you stay close to the meaning of what you first intended to do, and that's a really good guide.

Lina Rodriguez11选5必中一个号: I think for me the process of filmmaking is about that process of discovery, the process of not knowing, which I don't think is that different from life, we just have different mechanisms to give ourselves answers in life. For me, making something when I know exactly what it is and why I'm doing it and I'm just illustrating this answer—I’m just not that interested in pursuing that, so... I guess the long, winded road of not knowing and exploring and also just encountering others in terms of process is about trying to open up spaces. It's not just about what I see behind the camera, because I see my job being behind the camera, but also around the camera.

Carmine Grimaldi: I often am interested in the way a piece can emerge organically, not necessarily in conversation or not necessarily in explicit dialogue, but in a conversation of various registers, whether its intuitive or choreographed and the way that a style of the film can emerge in that organic conversation. For me it’s the reason I’m interested in nonfiction film, whatever register you want to call that—documentary or something else—the reason I'm compelled by filming people in a largely non-scripted way is precisely that it's unpredictable and that I can't control it.

Eric Hynes: And that is just how First Look is, I don't like the idea of there being these categories, narrative or documentary. It often leads us there—that space of ‘let’s not call this a documentary festival, let's not call this a narrative and documentary festival.’ Our ethos is: what is a valuable piece that sticks with us and that feels like our audience isn't going to get to see otherwise? Putting films together like this is as much about putting filmmakers together because you want to have their work bounce off one another and you want to see what comes out of it. Like everything else in the festival it's sort of like an experiment—what will happen if these four films play together and as many of the filmmakers who could be present are present? What emerges?

When Two or Three

YS11选5必中一个号: I’m very drawn to process, like, “How?” As a little kid I would just watch people build things, paint things. If people were going through a process of anything, I wanted to bear witness to it and I find that it is still something I'm very interested in. There's a process in the film, like you see them getting ready for the dinners and doing the dinners, but the dinner doesn't just come because they need to commune, the dinner exists because of a history. And I think there’s something to that. The process began so long before what we're seeing. So where does it begin and where does it end? I'm drawn to these things that unify us without us being aware of it.

DH: I've never been a pure documentary person that thinks it’s evidence and it’s truth. I don’t really think we need truth, but we need films to emote and to reflect our feelings and be truthful on an emotional level. But I don't think it's about facts and issues...

LR: When you're in film school you have all these parameters of what to do and how to make film and how you should know what you're doing before you embark on the adventure of making a film. But once I started making films with a Super 8mm camera, I started using it as a way to capture and shoot things that interested me without the intention of making something. So I continued to make films in that way, and then I made my feature films, which also have a process of discovery, but sometimes they have scripts and I work with actors. So although I have these two different ways of making films, I guess the thing that joins them is this interest in using filmmaking as a path of discovery and encountering other people and trying to learn from each other and not imposing something that I already know.

CG: To come to a project with too much intention, beyond the intention of absorbing and understanding, and playing with and sharing with and learning from, I think is too restrictive for me, I don't think I can bring that much, and so I think it needs to be largely unplanned and improvisatory and based on building a relationship that is generous and exploratory.

EH:11选5必中一个号 I’m often asked what I look for as a programmer, what am I drawn to? And it's exactly that. It is something that is discovering itself as it’s playing, that's what I’m most drawn to. What I get most excited about, and what I feel a sense of urgency around participating as a programmer, is the work that gives the feeling of figuring itself out as it goes along. Sometimes that’s about the process of it, some of which makes its way onto the screen, sometimes it doesn’t, but even if it doesn't make it onto the screen overtly I feel like it’s in the DNA and you can just feel it. Here’s something where what you see is not necessarily what was planned directly and it's better for it, because its discovering itself so therefore you, as the viewer, are allowed to discover something too. You’re not being told something, something’s not being demonstrated to you, you are having an experience, and something is emerging in front of you. That's just the best. If there’s a single reason why I'm drawn to cinema, it’s that.

Aquí y allá

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1彩的彩的新版彩Connected: Lake Mungo/L’amour fou http://gybsgdx.cn/archive/entry/2671/connected_mungo_amour http://gybsgdx.cn/archive/entry/2671/connected_mungo_amour feature Mon, 25 May 2020 00:00:00 -0400 Nicholas Russell, Lawrence Garcia Connected In this weekly column, one writer will send another a new piece of writing about a film they have been watching and pondering over, in the hopes that this will prompt a connection—emotional, thematic, historical, or analytical—to a different film the other has been watching or is inspired to rewatch. This ongoing column will be in the spirit of many past Reverse Shot symposiums, in which writers found connections between seemingly disparate cinematic works, and it will also help us maintain personal connection among our writers and our readers at this uncertain moment.

Lake Mungo

11选5必中一个号 The Internet is no longer the tool of limitless potential and ingenuity it was once heralded to be, somehow cognitively separated from our lurid relationship with social media. We (“we”) each interact with it differently: there are many versions, multitudinous and terrifyingly various, scattered into an oblivion of shards of data by algorithms, invasive devices, corporate greed, and our own biases. I remember the Internet I grew up with as a dark place—literally. I only seemed to visit it late at night, under a blanket. (The conspiracy theorist trolls and white supremacists were already there, but they didn’t seem to have the mandate of violence they do now.) It seemed like you could find anything if you looked hard enough. Type in a random web search, and see where it leads—like page-hopping on Wikipedia, clicking link after link until you find yourself reading about serial killers when all you wanted to know was how many toes an ostrich has. (Two, and three stomachs.) Remember the Silk Road? The black-market organ trade? When you first learned about torrenting? Back then, the Internet felt like the underworld. It seemed as if a vein into the void had been tapped. What was exposed could only be gleaned in bits and pieces. Everything had a veneer. There was always a deeper layer to discover.

Ironically, my current battles with insomnia and anxiety transport me back to that time when I was a kid still learning about living online, when I stayed up on purpose rather than against my will. In quarantine, I’ve been drawn to old comforts and once-viewed curiosities, the Australian found footage horror movie Lake Mungo among them. In my opinion, it’s not particularly revealing to make any statement defending or advocating for certain types of movies suitable to be viewed during a crisis. Just as well, viewing habits are not beholden to stable binaries; happy movies for happy times and so forth. To each their own.

Lake Mungo has been characterized by many publications, including this one, as a “sad” horror movie. It takes the form of a documentary and follows a family in mourning following the death of their 16-year-old daughter. So, among other things, this is a movie about grief. But I’ve always found all ghost stories to be inherently a little sad, no matter the context. What makes Lake Mungo so stirring, so viscerally appealing is how easily and deftly it creates a mirror of the real world, with a slight crack in it. The illusion of ease or realism in filmmaking often signals great effort, or at the very least, great skill. Found footage is a genre trading on a manufactured proximity to reality that is far more explicit about its artifice than traditional cinema. This makes it a potent format for horror when executed well. It also results in a lot of lazy filmmaking, which is why studios can churn these movies out quickly and cheaply—and also why no one tends to take them seriously.

Lake Mungo’s writer-director Joel Anderson understands the thin line that has to be walked with this genre, but also understands that there is so little that can be effective in any kind of story without believable characters and behavior. So the family comes first. Their imperfect accounts of Alice, through interviews, are refreshingly devoid of grave, actorly pauses or melodramatic waterworks. Some of this is likely due to the performers’ lack of scripted dialogue. The small town of Ararat is given significance through expressionistic touches, with stunning images of the surrounding desert and crowded night sky interspersed throughout. Lake Mungo11选5必中一个号 is also a found-footage movie shot on film, which gives it a timeless grainy texture that gets broken whenever we’re shown the digital “found footage” in question. Over the course of 90 minutes, a quiet, melancholic mood builds, until finally the supernatural enters.

This, from Thomas Ligotti’s Conspiracy Against the Human Race, feels like an apt, albeit indirect way of describing Lake Mungo11选5必中一个号: “From across an immeasurable divide, we brought the supernatural into all that is manifest. Like a faint haze it floats around us. We keep company with ghosts. Their graves are marked in our minds, and they will never be disinterred from the cemeteries of our remembrance...Wherever we go, we know not what expects our arrival but only that it is there.”

For those who haven’t seen the film, it’s worth preserving as many of its quiet and unsettling pleasures as possible. What I’ve said above should serve as preface enough. This is a movie that evoked for me the feeling of being in the dark, surfing through unsolved cases and urban legends. It’s a story that wriggles its way through the cracks in our hopes that the modern world is a place mapped and accounted for. You are not transported to Ararat; you’re drawn in. What happened to Alice turns out to be at once far more mundane and far more unsettling than you could anticipate. And for my money, Lake Mungo has one of the most shocking, skin-tingling twists of any film I’ve seen.

I respect a movie that defies the limitations of its distribution platforms, whether streamed on your laptop or your phone. Lake Mungo isn’t picky about how you watch it. If anything, the more personal the device the better. Anticipating the question as to why watching a horror movie “right now” would be anyone’s cup of tea, I will simply say that, if Lake Mungo11选5必中一个号 works for you, it has the effect of a bracing, cold splash of water. Rather than looking over your shoulder in the dark, the movie gives the far more arresting and disconcerting sense that you have to stare into that darkness to make sure you’re not missing something, that you’re looking closely, until you or something else moves. —Nicholas Russell

L’amour fou

11选5必中一个号 The pervasive air of conspiracy you describe is only too recognizable these days. Even as our physical lives have become ever more restricted and claustrophobic, there’s an increasing awareness of the myriad forces—not exactly benevolent—that continue to operate beyond our control, and the sense of powerlessness engendered by this knowledge is liable to drive anyone insane. More and more, the question seems to be not why people collapse under the weight of their own paranoia, but why they don’t.

There’s probably no greater filmmaker on this subject than Jacques Rivette, whose work has given me a fair share of frustration, but which has also, over the years, opened up so many intriguing paths of exploration that I find myself returning again and again, hoping to finally break the code. Indeed, your description of Lake Mungo as a “story that wriggles its way through the cracks in our hopes that the modern world is a place mapped and accounted for” applies to my experience of a great many of his films. As Jonathan Rosenbaum once put it, Rivette’s early works “teeter on the edge of madness,” and his 1969 feature L’amour fou, which I recently caught up with on a subpar VHS rip (the only way to see it at home, as far as I’m aware), is the most clearly marked in that respect. Running just over four hours, it directly precedes Rivette’s 13.5-hour Out 1, laying the groundwork for that film’s expansive explorations of conspiracy and theater. In the case of L’amour fou, these twinned subjects flow from a smaller unit: the relationship between Sebastien (Jean-Pierre Kalfon), a director heading a small production of Racine’s Andromaque, and his wife Claire (Bulle Ogier), an actress who abruptly quits during the first rehearsal. This story engine having been established, the film largely moves between the couple’s domestic dramas, the theater troupe’s rehearsals, and Claire’s solitary wanderings through the streets of Paris—all of which follow rough trajectories of disintegration, breakdown, and collapse.

Theater here is a collective, almost utopian enterprise—or that’s how it’s conceived anyway, with the troupe’s bare white rehearsal stage practically sealed off from the outside world, offering Sebastien and his collaborators a chance to remake the world as they please. By contrast, the apartment Claire shares with Sebastien, where she stages her own paranoiac drama, continually serves as a gateway to the city and its endless possibilities, which bring her farther and farther out as the film unfolds. (While compiling a sort of dossier on her husband’s activities, she frantically records snatches of radio transmissions and even street sounds, and at one point attempts to steal a basset hound.) Eventually recognizing that something must give way in their relationship, the couple abandon their respective pursuits and beat a retreat back to their bedroom, where they together launch an extended assault on the space, scrawling on and then stripping away wallpaper, reorganizing and/or smashing furniture, and generally upending the room’s previous order.

This protracted sequence transforms the pair’s familiar domestic terrain into an arena of uninhibited play—something like the destructiveness of Bringing Up Baby without the mollifying comedy. Carried out literally, this exercise would be useful to precisely no one, but it is crucial in understanding Rivette’s fundamental conceptions of identity. What’s significant is that through all this activity, Claire isn’t looking to reveal some sort of inner truth, some essence of her being that has heretofore been suppressed. For her at least, there was never any doubt that she was merely adopting and then discarding various roles and postures: “We've played too much, I've had enough,” she eventually says to Sebastien, exhausted. Through this exercise, she eventually locates a point of departure, allowing her to escape from her previous existence, while Sebastien, for his part, is only beginning to realize that he might need to do so himself.

Not exactly the most affirmative of films, L’amour fou ends on a note not so far from the Ligotti quote you mentioned earlier: sitting in his ruined, empty apartment, keeping company with the ghosts, Sebastian is all too aware of the hollow husk of his own life. But amidst the rubble, there’s also a glimmer of hope. For if identity and human behavior, in Rivette’s view, are rooted in performance and play, then we are not11选5必中一个号 locked into our roles—and thus into endless cycles of paranoia and claustrophobia and fear. Like Claire, like Sebastien, perhaps we still have the option of starting anew. —Lawrence Garcia

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067棋牌室苹果Connected: Manhunter/Sambizanga http://gybsgdx.cn/archive/entry/2670/connected_ Sambizanga_Manhunter http://gybsgdx.cn/archive/entry/2670/connected_ Sambizanga_Manhunter feature Mon, 18 May 2020 00:00:00 -0400 Mark Asch, Tayler Montague Connected In this weekly column, one writer will send another a new piece of writing about a film they have been watching and pondering over, in the hopes that this will prompt a connection—emotional, thematic, historical, or analytical—to a different film the other has been watching or is inspired to rewatch. This ongoing column will be in the spirit of many past Reverse Shot symposiums, in which writers found connections between seemingly disparate cinematic works, and it will also help us maintain personal connection among our writers and our readers at this uncertain moment.

Manhunter

I have this idea that every era’s ultimate artistic subject is its discovery of the obstacles standing in the way of intimacy. I’m attracted to this idea in part because it’s sufficiently half-baked and reductive to encompass everything, from The Age of Innocence, with its Gilded Age moralism, to Frank Tashlin’s Will Success Spoil Rock Hunter?11选5必中一个号, at the conclusion of which Jayne Mansfield plaintively asks her long-lost love, Groucho Marx, why he never tried to kiss her, and he replies, “I never could get close enough” (a joke at the expense of her space-age bosoms, which Mansfield surely appreciated better than anyone). Seen this way, expressions of romance, violence, anarchy, satire, etc., are attempts to test, flaunt, and remake the structures that prevent us from being true to each other.

From the vantage of spring 2020, it’s not hard to hypothesize what contemporary conditions would keep Jayne and Groucho, or Newland Archer and Countess Olenska, from coming kissingly close; the challenge for art is to explore how that would actually feel 11选5必中一个号for them. Right now, here in Brooklyn, I have everything I need, while being cut off from the flow of existence; all I can really do is try to divert a stream of torrential reality my way, through Zoom keyholes and onrushing social-media scrolls. I want to be easy and articulate, but I feel brutish and unwieldy, like I’m trying to maneuver a video-arcade claw machine to pick up individual grains of sand, which is to say I feel like a character in a film by the cinema laureate of blocked intimacy and hyperreal modernity, Michael Mann.

Mann’s great subject is men reaching out—men hunting. Manhunter could just as easily be the title of Heat or Public Enemies, and even The Last of the Mohicans, with its overwhelmingly potent depictions of heterosexual lust, has as its twin poles the doubled figures of Hawkeye and Magua, two orphans who circle each other urgently, ardently, as if to reintegrate a split self. In Manhunter, from Thomas Harris’s novel, FBI profiler Will Graham (William Petersen) is lured out of retirement to track the familiacidal-maniac home invader known as “the Tooth Fairy” (Tom Noonan). As with his previous pursuit of Dr. Hannibal Lecktor (Brian Cox, originating the role though not the spelling), Graham gets In Too Deep, walking in the Tooth Fairy’s footsteps and describing the killer first as “him,” then as “you,” and finally, inexorably, as “I.” Graham peers into the same glass houses as the killer, pores over the same home videos, until he sees the Other reflected back at him—the same intimacy the Tooth Fairy seeks in the eyes of his victims.

One of the many things I have come to love about Mann over the years is the dopey, humorless intensity of his music tastes, which sound to me like a struggle towards intimacy. Needle-drops like Manhunter’s screamy, resolutely mid-tempo end-credits song “Heartbeat” are clenched rockist libido at the outer limits of its emotive range, affected and affecting in the same way as the lockjawed, yearning men who populate his films. In turbulent, violent worlds, Mann’s characters fixate on still points of wisdom: across three decades, in Manhunter, in Heat, in Miami Vice, they repeat that “time is luck,” a basically meaningless mantra but one with which I have, of late, struggled to find much fault. They cling to these truths with the same meaty, desperate grip with which they cling to each other. Think of Chris Hemsworth palming Tang Wei’s entire head in Blackhat, holding her in his enormous hand like a tiger carrying its cub in its jaws; of Colin Farrell, in Miami Vice, reaching across to Gong Li’s seatbelt before he makes his go-fast boat go even faster; of Al Pacino commandeering an LAPD chopper so he can ask Robert De Niro out for coffee; of Petersen in Manhunter11选5必中一个号 softening his voice to a fearful whisper as Graham tries to explain what he does to a son he knows is terrified of his father.

Watching Manhunter returned me to a state as animalistic as childhood, hearing the sound of adult voices in the next room. The backstory is elaborate and the exposition oblique: it seems we’ve started somewhere in the middle, and have to catch up, and baroque motifs, like the Tooth Fairy’s love of William Blake’s “The Tyger,” arise from nowhere. The dialogue is murmured, or echoing. The lighting scheme color-codes aggressively: cold nocturnal blues for the murder houses, like the light from a TV hitting the walls after everyone has gone to bed; in FBI headquarters and Lecktor’s cell, a white so bright it hurts your eyes; lurid shades of red and green in the Tooth Fairy’s lair. It’s a quarantine aesthetic: every room is its own headspace, its own world, in a way that also predicts the digital collage of Collateral or Miami Vice, which rarely orient their viewers in conventional coverage or repeated setups, so that it’s hard to hold on to any objective sense of scale. It gives you a woozy, restless, disassociated feeling that’s borderline incoherent but turned all the way up; watching a Mann film feels like pacing in a glassy cage, searching for some kind of anchor point in the distance, somewhere beyond this experience that’s equal parts high-tech and feral. —Mark Asch

Sambizanga

11选5必中一个号 Echoing your sentiment on using social media and “Zoom keyholes” to cope, I have been maneuvering my way through Google drives with downloadable films in them, shared log-ins across streaming networks, and participated in video chat link-ups to discuss what we’ve just watched. In the absence of communal watching in physical spaces, one of the most moving experiences for me was taking part in the organized by Daniella Shreir and Yasmina Price via Another Gaze: A Feminist Film Journal.

11选5必中一个号 This discussion group invited us to spend time with the films of Sarah Maldoror, a Guadeloupean filmmaker, political activist, and pioneer who set forth to make vital work within the pantheon of Pan-African cinema. Her films highlight themes about the struggle for liberation, shed a light on important Black cultural figures, and foreground the experiences of African women. She once said, “African women must be everywhere. They must be in the images, behind the camera, in the editing room and involved in every stage of the making of a film. They must be the ones to talk about their problems.”

Another Gaze’s program provided us with a perspective on the breadth of the filmography, theater work, and life of this director, who passed away last month. After spending a week or two with the films available to us, we then became active participants in a Zoom discussion. Aspects of the conversation often spilled onto Twitter, with each of us commenting in real time on the themes in Maldoror’s work, specifically films like Sambizanga (1972).

In the film, set in Angola, Domingos, a revolutionary looking to overthrow Portugal’s colonial rule, is taken from his home by armed forces. From there we follow his wife, Maria, on her journey to get answers about where Domingos is located, newborn baby in tow. This journey doesn’t just require following the trail of information by foot but also seeing how that information travels in spaces like prisons via word of mouth, an important mode of communication. My synopsis feels as though it fails to encapsulate the brilliance of Maldoror’s film, which was at one point banned in Angola prior to the toppling of colonial power in 1974.

After watching Sambizanga and the rest of the film program (which consisted of her short films Monangambée [1968], Et les chiens se taisaient d’Aimé Césaire [1978], and Léon G. Damas [1994]), we all convened on Zoom to parse through the themes of her work. The “we” consists of the who read excerpts of Fanon and Césaire, and then the panel that took place afterward with filmmakers, curators, and scholars in the lineage of Maldoror discussing how they first came to her work. Also her daughters Annouchka de Andrade and Henda Ducados shared anecdotes of their mother’s life with us, giving us a peek into the process of preserving her legacy, be it through the restorations of her films or discussing what inspired her in conversation, where those stories will live on amongst us.

11选5必中一个号 Key ideas that resonated with me included the ways in which love and motherhood are part and parcel of revolution, the importance of poetry as a gateway to a better understanding of image-making, the necessity of pulling from other mediums to better inform your craft, and that political storytelling isn’t in opposition to beauty and aesthetics. All of these ideas, which would break off into deeper conversations pulling from post-colonial Marxist theory and poetry, served as an oft-needed reminder that nothing is new and we all have creative ancestors laying the foundations for our own work.

When I first saw Sambizanga last summer, I was in the midst of wanting to explore new narratives, which is also part of the driving force behind what I’ve been doing in quarantine: familiarizing myself with work that I hadn’t been privy to. The driving principle that led me to was a leap into this then-unfamiliar world. I tagged along with a friend who was helping me visualize what would be my own first film. We’d been watching new things and then using them to inform what we’d end up shooting later that summer. Maldoror’s scenes of community subconsciously validated the thesis of what I want my own oeuvre to be.

One of my favorite moments in Léon G. Damas is when Maldoror is on the streets of French Guiana asking Black students who their favorite poets were and which ones they’re learning about in school. At the same time she’s also maintaining a narrative about Damas, poet and founder of the Negritude movement, who is described by Césaire as a “Negro of the diaspora; an uprooted Negro”—a description that I found profound in that he was an intra-communal figure both connected to and speaking to me as a Black woman regardless of my place in the world. Yet, regrettably, much like those same students, this was my first time hearing of him. I, too, was receiving an on-the-ground education by way of Sarah’s filmmaking.

The act of disseminating information among each other for the greater good of the collective is a major theme in much of Maldoror’s work. Her films, as the panelists discussed, operated in a space of plurality not fixated or concerned with one specific narrative but seeking to connect to and explore histories—of people, of places—and calling upon us to use that knowledge to “remake the world differently,” a refrain heard throughout the conversation. These are all strategies that must be employed in our contemporary moment.

To take part in the discussion around her legacy with other thinkers and creators allowed for a sense of communion that I’d been longing for without even realizing it. It got my dormant brain cells working and solidified the importance of collective action and seeing each other through. It fed me spiritually, and gave me new readings to seek out and set me on a path of better understanding. The closing remarks emphasized the need to look towards a future—precisely my tactic to get through the other side of all of this. —Tayler Montague

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12选5浙江爱彩乐奖金Feast of the Epiphany - Virtual Cinema Screenings http://gybsgdx.cn/archive/entry/2444/feast http://gybsgdx.cn/archive/entry/2444/feast feature Fri, 15 May 2020 00:00:00 -0400 Jeff Reichert, Michael Koresky, Farihah Zaman We can't wait to get back to the movies. But in the meantime, we want to help theaters through this difficult moment.

Since the closure of cinemas due to the pandemic, venues and distributors have been collaborating to make new films available online via "Virtual Cinema" programs with proceeds going to help venues continue operating.

Rent Feast via the links below to support your local theaters.

NOW PLAYING:

- Queens, NY
- Tampa, FL
- Princeton, NJ
- Buffalo, NY
- Ambler, PA
- Doylestown, PA
- Jenkintown, PA
- Towanda, PA
- Columbia, SC

Coming Soon:

6/26
Smith Rafael Film Center - San Rafael, CA

More dates to be announced shortly.

If you are a theater or venue interested in booking Feast of the Epiphany for your virtual cinema program, e-mail us:

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About Feast:

In this docu-fictional diptych, a young woman lovingly prepares a meal for friends, and the simple gesture takes on unexpected significance. Revelry turns to meditations on mortality, and the tiniest, hard-won gesture of goodness comes from an unexpected party. Night turns to day, and viewers are taken somewhere else entirely―albeit with a lingering dissolve of emotions, ideas, and grace. From the Academy Award–winning producer of American Factory, Feast of the Epiphany 11选5必中一个号is an uncommonly sensitive rumination on the ways people form and choose communities, collaborations, and support groups in the face of hardship, labor, and loss.

Feast of the Epiphany was co-directed by Reverse Shot founders Michael Koresky and Jeff Reichert (producer, American Factory), and Farihah Zaman (producer, Ghosts of Sugarland), and features cinematography by Ashley Connor (Madeline's Madeline).

Check out the reviews below!

“The conceit is entrancing . . . The more one spends time in the company of Feast of the Epiphany—enhanced by an intermittent classical score by Sibelius and Ashley Connor’s inquisitive, enticing cinematography—the more it develops into a tantalizing portrait of both the fascinating realities behind people’s day-to-day existences and of the role food plays in fostering communion with friends, colleagues and the larger natural world.” —

"A meditative banquet of ideas...A fascinating cinematic language that interrogates itself about matters of spontaneity and manipulation, man-made products and earth-given treasures, simplicity and sophistication." ―

"Part of the joy of watching Feast of the Epiphany11选5必中一个号 (and which may also prompt multiple viewings) is comparing its two halves. On the surface, each half is different in its approach, but the filmmakers’ sensitivity to how something as seemingly ordinary as food can have an immense emotional impact is consistently and unobtrusively profound." —

“Entirely unexpected. Feast of the Epiphany11选5必中一个号 continually surprises and works to innovate the viewer’s understanding of what 'narrative' cinema can communicate . . . A conscious, courageous attempt to recalibrate notions of society and belonging.” —

“It’s refreshing that Koresky, Reichert, and Zaman demand so much from their viewers, especially when the film itself is so eminently pleasurable to watch. A difficult film that isn’t at all a difficult sit, Feast of the Epiphany lays the groundwork for questions and never once concerns itself with answers.” —

“A film whose formal experiments offer the viewer the abundant food for thought promised by the title . . . By pivoting on a seemingly incidental element of everyday life to look at where our food literally comes from, Feast of the Epiphany 11选5必中一个号becomes a political prompt, reminding us to consider the origins of our consumables and the processes and structures that shape them.” —

“In an independent film scene that too often evinces a paucity of imagination, Feast of the Epiphany11选5必中一个号 displays a refreshingly protean ambition . . What’s achieved is a delicate interplay between constituent, subtly connected parts which don’t fuse together so much as vibrate in expectation, creating generative flashes of recognition in the process. Dig deeper. You don’t know what you may find.” —

11选5必中一个号 “The film requires an openness rarely asked of an audience, and it prescribes a solution to suffocating individualism.” —

“The particular way the movie moves from its first to second half is so smart and thoughtful that I was momentarily dazed... Interrogate[s] otherwise implicit economic factors normally embedded into narratives with no interest in the larger systemic ramifications.” —

“A genuinely innovative blend of narrative and nonfiction . . . the effect is akin to striking fire with two sharp rocks. It’s a film that takes on more square footage each time it shifts gears as much mentally as it does physically, delivering on its promise of epiphanies and then some.” —

11选5必中一个号 "The film’s 80 minutes pass by with an elegant simplicity that belies the intellectual rigor behind the endeavor....It’s strikingly free of didacticism or ironic distance. Koresky, Reichert, and Zaman push — or perhaps gently nudge — their audience towards an ontological examination of how cinema connects disparate items." —

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17pk棋牌游戏Connected: Gas Food Lodging/Daisies http://gybsgdx.cn/archive/entry/2669/connected_gas_food_daisies http://gybsgdx.cn/archive/entry/2669/connected_gas_food_daisies feature Mon, 11 May 2020 00:00:00 -0400 Mayukh Sen, Emma Piper-Burket Connected In this weekly column, one writer will send another a new piece of writing about a film they have been watching and pondering over, in the hopes that this will prompt a connection—emotional, thematic, historical, or analytical—to a different film the other has been watching or is inspired to rewatch. This ongoing column will be in the spirit of many past Reverse Shot symposiums, in which writers found connections between seemingly disparate cinematic works, and it will also help us maintain personal connection among our writers and our readers at this uncertain moment.

Gas Food Lodging

11选5必中一个号 I spent the first few months of this year programming “Discomfort Food,” a film series for BAMFilm reframing how viewers experience food on film. That assortment of 12 films, initially scheduled to run for a week in late April, has been postponed indefinitely due to the pandemic. To work through the vague sadness I’m feeling, I’ve been screening some of these films for myself, an exercise I find clarifying. Maybe it’ll open up new ways of thinking about these films, so that if and when the series resumes, I’ll come to them with even greater appreciation than before.

I recently rewatched one of the titles that I’m most passionate about, Allison Anders’s 1992 film Gas Food Lodging. Its inclusion in my lineup may raise eyebrows, because, despite the title, it’s hardly about food, just the day-to-day realities of living in a family whose breadwinner waits tables. Few films have explored the interior lives of service workers with such care. The narrative focuses on a family of three women who live in a trailer park in Laramie, New Mexico. One has to squint to find overt references to food in Gas Food Lodging. There are scattered mentions of BLTs, and at one point the teenage protagonist, Shade (Fairuza Balk), orders a large glass of Slice with ice at the truck stop diner where her mother, Nora (Brooke Adams), works. She visits the restaurant in an early scene with her older sister Trudi (Ione Skye), who skips school and seeks out male company frequently. During this scene, Trudi rejects her mother’s pleas to eat a hearty meal, as she doesn’t want the stink of fish clinging to her before her date later that night. Gas Food Lodging11选5必中一个号’s depiction of labor in the food industry is precisely why I included the film in this series. For Nora (and later for Trudi, too, when she begins work as a waitress), food is backbreaking and unromantic work.

Though critics lauded the film upon release, history has treated Gas Food Lodging pretty shabbily. The movie resurfaced in an unfortunate way in 2017, when the film’s costume designer Susan Bertram horrifying assault allegations against the actor Robert Knepper. There are heartening signs that ignorance of the film may be shifting, like a recent Criterion Channel feature on Anders, one of American cinema’s many independent female directors whose work has been unfairly ignored. Gas Food Lodging deserves wider rediscovery. Among Anders’s many gifts is her refusal to patronize to her working-class characters. There’s a deadening rhythm to life in Laramie. Each woman has hoped, or still wishes, for a better future. Shade and Trudi’s biological father (James Brolin) abandoned the family when the girls were still young. Nora seems resigned to staying in town; Trudi tries to claw her way out. Shade seems the most hopeful of the three. She wants to make her life in Laramie work.

Shade is a curious creature, a misfit in every way. One can best describe her style of dressing as quirky: unlike her peers, she wears wide-brimmed hats and jackets so big that her arms disappear. Where others in her (predominantly white) social orbit seem to abhor Laramie’s Mexican population, Shade sees humanity in boys like Javier (Jacob Vargas), disgusted by the casual racism of her friends. Shade fills her days watching movies in a theater where Javier works. She loses herself in the films of Elvia Rivero, a fictional Mexican movie star. It feels banal to reduce movie-watching to escapism, yet that’s the precise purpose the activity has for Shade: They allow her to imagine a more thrilling reality than the one she inhabits. When she sees dapper men court Rivero on screen, Shade starts to dream that she’ll find a companion for her single mother one day.

Shade’s rootedness in that town stems from her belief that she can repair her broken family, an ultimately futile pursuit. She doesn’t seem to comprehend how cruel men can be, at least not yet. “You just hate men!” Shade barks at Nora in one scene. Shade’s belief in humanity’s inherent goodness guides her through most of the film, until chaos destroys her fantasy of building a tranquil family unit. Trudi becomes pregnant and gives birth in Dallas, where she decides she’ll stay for good. Shade lets out a cry so anguished after hearing her sister won’t come back home that it seems as if Trudi’s ripped Shade’s heart from her chest.

Balk was just about 17 when she filmed Gas Food Lodging in 1991, a fact that continually surprises me when I revisit the film. Shade’s supposed to be a bit younger. Balk captures her youth and its attendant naiveté with piercing directness. She makes Shade into an eccentric, with her highly idiosyncratic voice and awkward carriage, yet Balk herself never comes across as affected. Each gesture seems to rise from instinct, not calculation. Her performance distills the disillusionment inherent in growing up.

Gas Food Lodging deserves to be discussed in tandem with American cinema’s other insightful portrayals of post-adolescence, such as Bogdanovich’s The Last Picture Show (1971) or Gerwig’s Lady Bird (2017). Following that rueful visit to Dallas, Shade tries to make peace with life and heads back home, where her sister won’t be back in that trailer bedroom. Shade returns to Laramie, and melancholy seems to crush her. Those flashes of sorrow, though, are tinged with hope: the very resolve that Nora and Trudi possess lives inside her DNA, too. Shade seems far too pure a soul to return to such a small-minded town, but it’s impossible to imagine her living anywhere else. She’ll be isolated with her own thoughts, no longer having access to the human company she’s known for so long. It’s an experience so similar to the one that I, like so many others, have come to accept as my new normal for the time being. —Mayukh Sen

Daisies

Mayukh, I’d never seen Gas Food Lodging before, but immediately after reading your essay I put it on and want to thank you. I smiled, laughed, cried, and generally relished in the chance to reflect on that particular longing that is intrinsic to the experience of being a teenage girl in a small town. Shade had a line that stood out to me, which came after the double whammy of her failed attempt to set up a date for her mom and being rejected by her crush, “A lot of people say you’re stupid to have expectations on anything, but they’re just afraid of disappointment. Me, I guess I’m more afraid of not having any daydreams left. Disappointment is easy—you can get over disappointment, but what do you do if you can’t imagine the future the way you want it to be?”

This line hit me hard given the current state of affairs. I’ve found during these quarantine days an inability to see much beyond lunchtime; for better or worse, I can’t feel the future anymore. While I’ll admit there is something oddly freeing about this state of being, it’s also reminiscent of my teenage experience: that feeling of being trapped inside yourself with an undefined longing for something you don’t yet know. That longing either can make you tender and curious, as it did for Shade (and me), or implode, as it seemed to do with Trudi. Maybe it’s because you started out your essay by mentioning your series on food, but as I was watching Gas Food Lodging and thinking about all of this, my mind wandered over to Vera Chytilová’s Daisies from 1966—arguably one of the most epic food-centric films in the history of cinema.

At the beginning of Daisies, the two protagonists, Marie I (Jitka Cerhová) and Marie II (Ivana Karbanová), determine that since the world has gone rotten they have gone rotten too. Daisies is a critical title in the Czech New Wave, made during a brief period of creative freedom before the Warsaw Pact and ensuing Normalization in 1968. But even during the short, tolerant thaw that allowed for creative expression, the film ultimately was banned (for its depiction of food waste) and Chytilová was blacklisted. She directed commercials under a different name to make it through the next decade. For the duration of the film, the friends embark on exceedingly hedonistic experiments, all the while checking in with each other before they commit each new act of destruction. “Does it matter?” Marie II asks as she cuts into Marie I’s black lace bustier. “No, it doesn't matter,” Marie I answers as she cuts Marie II's arm off in a playful game of visual dismemberment done in paper-doll-like animation. Throughout the film they are constantly eating, playing dress up, and posing as if they’re about to be photographed.

When I saw Daisies at age 19, it was the first time I'd ever encountered such a complete externalization of the undefined angst I'd felt growing up, but also of the pure joy and power of being a girl. The playful nihilism of the Maries, combined with the kaleidoscopic cinematography and frenetic editing, somehow embodied all of my frustrations with society, with men, with being underestimated for being small, friendly, and female. To see a film that was so overtly political, and that at the same time touched me so personally, felt like a revelation. Perhaps it’s cliché to say in retrospect, but at the time, it opened up a whole new realm of possibility to me, showing how powerfully cinema could give voice to indefinable, unspoken feelings. Daisies (along with Agnès Varda’s The Gleaners and I11选5必中一个号, which I saw the same year) made me fully own the fact that I wanted to be a filmmaker, and helped me see that I could make films in the way that I wanted to, rather than having to fit the pre-existing Hollywood model. It’s ultimately why, a decade later, I went to study film at FAMU in Prague, where Chytilová studied.

Despite how wildly influential the film was for me, I hadn't actually watched it in its entirety in over 15 years. I realized on this recent viewing that there might be another reason Daisies has been seeping back into my subconscious of late—every day in quarantine, you ask yourself, “Does it matter?” and most of the time, there's a nagging feeling that the answer is “No.” I also want to briefly add that the film’s final dedication hits particularly strongly at this time: “to all those whose sole source of indignation is a trampled-on salad.” The text appears onscreen to the soundtrack of a firing squad. Of course Chytilová was referring to the party officials who would be outraged by the food waste recorded on film but ignored a host of other atrocities happening in the country. Today that text can’t help but call to mind the uneven displays of outrage we're seeing on the media: from the disproportionate coverage of a handful of people wielding guns because they can’t get a haircut, versus the lack of airtime for the millions of African Americans in the United States who are making a life and death calculation each time they want to go out for a run. So what happens when you can't imagine the future the way you want it to be? Do you go rotten like Marie I and Marie II? Do you stay hopeful like Shade? Or do you just keep waiting until some unlikely clarity comes? —Emma Piper-Burket

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2020年真精华布衣First Look 2020: Ridge http://gybsgdx.cn/archive/entry/2668/ridge_first_look http://gybsgdx.cn/archive/entry/2668/ridge_first_look feature Thu, 07 May 2020 00:00:00 -0400 Chloe Lizotte At the Museum Beyond Words
Chloe Lizotte on Ridge

Ridge played at Museum of the Moving Image's First Look Festival in March.

On a rainy April morning, John Skoog sends me a few folders of behind-the-scenes stills from his film, Ridge. I click through them. The camera dolly is the focal point of several: a metallic track elevated on jagged wood, all sharp edges atop fields and forest floors. It’s at first glance incongruous with its environment, yet also seems an outgrowth of it, as if its absence would be felt otherwise. The sight evokes a sequence from Ridge11选5必中一个号 that’s framed through the front windshield of a tractor at night. Its headlights harshly illuminate the deep green of the trees, while a mechanical arm begins to extract and devour the trunks with a harsh grinding noise. Despite that violence, the impression is not a simple clash between machinery and nature. The arm behaves in an almost lifelike manner—an ocean-floor organism gorging itself.

A few weeks have passed since I first met Skoog at the True/False Film Festival in March, just a week prior to Ridge’s New York premiere at the Museum of the Moving Image’s First Look Festival. He raised the idea of an “alien camera” to describe the viewpoint he brought to Ridge, his first feature within a corpus of short films, photography, and installations. If the film is “about” the 700-year-old rural Swedish village of Kvidinge, which is close to the town where Skoog grew up, it’s crafted to avoid the clichéd ways that its landscapes could be photographed and interpreted. Skoog name-checked The Man Who Fell to Earth during our conversation—“I think it should be required viewing for filmmakers”—and Ridge shares something of Nicolas Roeg’s ability to estrange the familiar into a set of dazzling elementals, as though landing on a new planet. But instead of displacing pastoral idealism onto that newness, Skoog brews something anti-verbal from the rhythms of its ecosystem.

Ridge grew out of a photography project: Skoog, who had taken portraits in high school, ventured to Kvidinge about ten years ago to document the townspeople. The end result struck him as “too good”: the polished aesthetics of the photos fell flat, but as he got to know his subjects, their individual stories about their hometown hinted at other possibilities. He told me, “I asked them to write down these stories, but with three rules: they had to be about the place, they had to be no longer than one page, and they had to be true. Obviously, all three rules were broken. But I found that the version of the place I wanted to explore was in the spaces between the stories.”

After a table reading of these pages, Skoog decided to build a Kvidinge-centered film around them. Throughout Ridge, the village’s residents read their stories in voiceover, almost as if they are flowing out of the landscapes. The gamble is that an affective sense of place might emerge somewhere between the image and sound, and in enigmatic overlaps, Skoog wears down straightforward relations between town and country, animal and human. As several tales allude to the eponymous “ridge,” an ambiguous plateau in the forest, they can add a folkloric haze to the visuals—for instance, a dolly past a pen of pigs grows ominous when paired with a tale of a reclusive hermit on the ridge whose rabbits were skinned by the townspeople after his death. The first story, of a cow vanishing from a farm and, according to hearsay, reappearing on the ridge, unfolds over a black screen and simmering electronic percussion; Skoog, a drummer, collaborated on the ambience-driven sound design with David Gülich, a composer with roots in the Swedish noise scene. A disquieting confusion arises over whether the cow is rebelling against herd instinct and the alleged nature of its apparition—all related to the futility of conventionally psychologizing it. After a full minute in suspension, choppy waves fill the screen as Skoog places us inside a boat, where a handful of people, all at a distance from one another, are dozing en route to Kvidinge. These solitary slumberers—migrant workers traveling to Sweden—summon ideas of belonging that exert a pull throughout the film. That thread is tapped by another story that introduces a recurring character, a young man from Poland (Mateusz Wieclawekvertly, one of a handful of professional actors in the film), who recounts drunkenly torching a car with a group of friends. He fled and never told anyone, but that burning car reappears later in the film, like déjà vu, or a spectral doubling-back within an associative web.

“Intention as mood,” as Skoog puts it, drove the Ridge shoot, which permitted this kind of structure. This ethos also pushed the crew to reject what he terms “Dardennes disease”: a handheld, grainy tendency of social realism that implies the film is less mediated. Instead, he and his frequent cinematographer Ita Zbroniec-Zajt bring a boldness of style through dramatic spotlighting and a dolly setup for every shot, even stationary ones. When it comes to Ridge’s abstractions (an overhead shot of a plow descending into wheat resembles a pinballing particle generator), Skoog cites Sacha Vierny’s close-ups in Alain Resnais’s short Le chant du Styrène (1959), in which the production process of a polystyrene factory suggests plants sprouting in time-lapse. All of this coaxes Ridge toward a space between fiction and nonfiction, especially when it comes to depicting the region itself. Scenes of a teenage boy (younger brother Aron Skoog) walking across a wheat field, set in the evening with an eerie post-sundown glow, as he lights a cigarette by the camera in silhouette, evoke Néstor Almendros’s twilights in Days of Heaven; a young girl running through a lifeless row of identical suburban houses, knocking on each door, only to receive no response, could set the scene for a David Lynch short (especially its underlying, crescendoing wind). As these moments accrue with only elliptical conventional continuity, though, the subjects/characters seem unmoored from the safety nets of narrative or each other, and their society, however sturdy, doesn’t seem to tame or elucidate the world surrounding it.

Skoog, who teaches film at the Art Academy in Mainz, Germany, is curious about the unrulier possibilities of the medium. Among his influences—Chantal Akerman, Maurice Pialat, Agnès Varda—he mentions he’s drawn to the conflict between “freedom and control,” a give-and-take between vision and execution. And while many vignettes in Ridge are conceived with a scripted concept in mind—Skoog co-wrote its scenarios with Polish playwright Anna Karasinska—they’re engineered to steer off set tracks. A scene that starts out with Wieclawekvertly’s character getting a haircut ramps up into an absurd pantomime of masculinity and cultural assimilation, as a sloshed onlooker goads him to act out an imaginary flirtation with a shopkeeper (“You have to create a magical atmosphere,” the older man needles the younger one as he fumbles through imperfect Swedish, while his barber plays the girl behind the counter with a weak falsetto). The sequence is set outdoors, at sunset, and its sparseness centers its commentary on immigration in power dynamics. Elsewhere, Skoog unsettles the regulated rhythms of modern agriculture, driven by lurching computer-controlled machinery, as in a scene where several farm workers attempt to corral two straying cows. The animals seem blankly confused, and the people, trying to surround the cows without startling them, appear increasingly wary of how they might react, and uncertain murmurs build as they walk toward the camera. The cows aren’t exactly threatening, but the scene conjures the tale of the two who absconded to the ridge, and hits home a discord that the animals aren’t in their proper place—a construct that calls into question the supposed authority of the humans.

This sort of thought process recalls Skoog’s earlier work, which spans from photography to participatory theater. When we meet, Skoog hands me a catalog that accompanied a 2015 exhibition of his work in Vienna; it includes archival scans and original writing from the likes of Anne Carson, but my eye goes to black-and-white production photos from his short Redoubt (2014), which focuses on an abandoned bomb shelter built by a reclusive farmer in southern Sweden. In retrospect, Redoubt feels like a study for Ridge: as Skoog and Zbroniec-Zajt drift the camera through the house on a dolly track, we hear locals’ distant impressions of him in voiceover, especially about his tirelessness as he fortified the structure—intended as a community shelter in case of a Soviet nuclear attack—from the ’40s through to his death in the ’70s. We’re confronted with the physical evidence and collective narrative, but the images lack the very person that binds it all together; abandoned spaces force us to supply the life that existed there. And again, in the production stills, the dolly takes center stage, a decisive material trail of the filmmaker’s presence.

That filling-in-the-blanks is a subconscious process. As the soundtrack melds ambient natural sounds with rhythmic machinery, the milieus themselves are interwoven, and the farm sits at the intersection of humans, technology, animals, and nature. The figures look slight within natural surroundings—the exact geography is hazy, but we become familiar with its fields and forests and valleys, extending as far outward as the eye can see. There’s a way in which Ridge surrenders to that scale; when children play tag in a thicket of tall, leafy plants, they’re glimpsed from afar like animals running through the brush. But a pervading unease makes the balance of this environment precarious, and the humans’ bond to a social structure seem tenuous: the camera glides over tables of discarded, nostalgic yard sale ephemera, while the subjects Skoog follows the closest end up on the fringes of group gatherings. As that world seems less stable, the implication looms that technology and industry irreparably threaten the land we still very much depend on.

Skoog sends me one last link, and it transports me to a recording of a 2008 a philosophy professor at Rice who specializes in “uncanny ecology”—some audience members recommended his book to Skoog after festival screenings of Ridge. It’s a quick-moving but fascinating recording: for Morton, any engaged ecological worldview has to collapse the hierarchy between humans and their environment, which “enables the uncanny,” a jolting recognition of oneself within another, the familiar within the unfamiliar. In other words, there is no meaningful distinction between subject and object, which makes our relationship with nature, in Morton’s words, a lot “weirder.” That weirdness in Ridge distorts our accepted sense of the world around us, where machines seem alive, people and animals become creatures of id-driven instinct, and nature seems hyperreal. The separations are no longer so simple. When the film concludes with Aron Skoog’s character coming face-to-face with two cows in a wooded clearing, the sight seems familiar—it dredges up that story from an hour ago about the cow absconding to the ridge—but sense-memory makes the effect stranger still. There isn’t a revelation to come from the natural world, but a baseline of interconnection, as fundamental as it is cryptic, that we might forget at our peril. And, as if to prove his point, behind one of the theaters at True/False, Skoog spotted a tractor identical to the one that appears in Ridge.

Photos courtesy of John Skoog.

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11选五中4个号多少钱Connected: Gilda/Pakeezah http://gybsgdx.cn/archive/entry/2667/connected_gilda_pakeezah http://gybsgdx.cn/archive/entry/2667/connected_gilda_pakeezah feature Mon, 04 May 2020 00:00:00 -0400 Susannah Gruder, Devika Girish Connected In this new weekly column, Connected, one writer will send another a new piece of writing about a film they have been watching and pondering over, in the hopes that this will prompt a connection—emotional, thematic, historical, or analytical—to a different film the other has been watching or is inspired to rewatch. This ongoing column will be in the spirit of many past Reverse Shot symposiums, in which writers found connections between seemingly disparate cinematic works, and it will also help us maintain personal connection among our writers and our readers at this uncertain moment.

Gilda

These days, messages will pop up on my phone more frequently than usual asking if I’m in the position to video chat. “Are you decent?” Chances are that I’m not, though I’ve developed a quick routine to feign composure from the shoulders up. As my computer’s camera light turns green and I prepare myself to greet whoever’s on the other end with a smile and a casual remark about how I’m “hanging in there,” I think of the ultimate on-screen entrance: Rita Hayworth’s transcendent hair-flip in Gilda (1946). Gilda’s husband has brought a visitor to her dressing room, and poses the same query to his bride: “Gilda, are you decent?” Hayworth’s iconic curls burst into view as she tosses her head back like a slingshot before situating herself into the center of the frame: “Me?” she responds, with her exaggerated air of naiveté. It’s not an entrance into a room, but into the film itself, and an announcement that from this point on, while Gilda may be viewed as an object to be possessed, this movie belongs to her.

Having grown up with a more “demure” genre of Hollywood starlet (Judy Garland, Debbie Reynolds, Julie Andrews), I had never seen a Rita Hayworth film until this month. But now, deep into my downright unglamorous isolation, I found myself longing for a particular kind of panache that only she could provide. It being my first time, the effect of Gilda’s entrance on me was exponentially greater—I nearly jumped out of my seat. While director Charles Vidor amplified Hayworth’s sensuality, dressing her in glamorous waist-hugging, shoulder-baring gowns, Gilda’s on-screen “handlers” do everything in their power to contain her raw sexual energy. At first, the story of Gilda belongs to Johnny Farrell, a gambling drifter played by an impish—and rather charmless—Glenn Ford. Finding himself down on his luck in Buenos Aires, Farrell secures a job as a glorified security guard at an illegal casino owned by the sophisticated but sinister Ballin Mundson (George Macready), who is conducting even greater nefarious dealings behind his office doors (something to do with masterminding a tungsten monopoly, but no matter). The real meat of the story emerges 18 minutes in, when Gilda arrives. Her face suddenly drops as she seems to recognize Johnny. It turns out they were an item once upon a time, and that she betrayed him—though we never find out exactly how. Now, through a series of coincidences some might classify as “fate,” the two have ambled back into each other’s lives, both still harboring a profound sense of hatred for one another so deep that it borders on love.

Once Gilda arrives on the scene, Johnny takes it upon himself to hide her wildly flirtatious behavior from Mundson—ostensibly to protect his boss’s reputation, but perhaps more because he can’t stand to see her flirting with anyone but him. While Gilda effortlessly shrugs off Johnny’s attempts to pin her down, her confidence belies her captivity. Gilda is a “kept woman” in every sense of the term. Gilda may have knowingly handed herself over to Mundson in return for a lavish life, but she hints that she didn’t have much of a choice. “I was down and out, he picked me up, put me back on my feet,” Johnny says, defending his current position as one of Mundson’s hangers-on. “Now isn’t that an amazing coincidence Johnny?11选5必中一个号” Gilda replies. “That’s practically the story of my life.”

Gilda’s story is a familiar one, though her character is far more complicated, and far less calculating, than the traditional femmes fatales seen in noirs from the same period. She has become embroiled with a rich, ruthless husband more as a survival tactic than a get-rich-quick scheme. Like his signature cane, which, with the push of a button, becomes a deadly sword, Mundson can turn on a dime—one moment serving as a doting husband helping with a stubborn zipper, the next threatening her not to make any “mistakes”—vaguely alluding to potential lapses in fidelity. This month alone I’ve watched a handful of films featuring similar characters—women who may be deemed “gold-diggers” but who have in fact been forced to align themselves with abusive men, faced with alternatives that are far worse. Gloria Grahame’s Debby in The Big Heat (1953) comes to mind, as she dances around a terrifying Lee Marvin and his violent temper—he ultimately explodes, with an infamous episode involving a pot of hot coffee. Grahame, at this point playing to type, also appears in Human Desire (1954) as a wife living in fear of her husband’s violent outbursts. She doesn’t dare leave him—he’s threatened to frame her for a murder he committed if she does. In The Long Goodbye 11选5必中一个号(1973) Mark Rydell’s Marty Augustine wields a broken coke bottle to disfigure his girlfriend (Jo Ann Brody) as a show of strength.

Johnny uses every trick in the book to keep tabs on Gilda, refusing to see her himself but enlisting his men to watch her at all times. “Every night she got all dressed up . . . and waited,” Johnny narrates in voiceover as Gilda paces around an empty apartment (a relatable situation, to say the least). But any attempt to keep Gilda contained is bound to fail, and it’s not long before she’s back at the casino, this time on stage. It’s another iconic moment: she performs “Put the Blame on Mame” to adoring onlookers, stripping off a glove and tossing it into the crowd (not advisable at this time). Even as Johnny reels her back in, violently chiding her for her exhibitionism, it’s inspiring to see that when Gilda breaks out of isolation, she does so in a big way. —Susannah Gruder

Pakeezah

Sue, I am delighted by your description of your isolation as “downright unglamorous” and your quick and casual approach to readying yourself for video calls. A phenomenon I believe we’re all still comprehending—and whose cultural effects will only become clear in the aftermath of all this—is the fact that most of our social interaction is now flattened to the rectangle of a screen and the contours of our faces, the revealing language of bodies, presence, and touch removed from the equation. My face suddenly feels overly important as an alibi of my presence and attentiveness in virtual meetings, each casual look or expression invested with meaning. But as someone who occasionally feels uncomfortable within her body, I’ve also found homebound isolation a little, dare I say it, freeing. To have how I dress or look have little bearing on my daily professional or personal interactions; to be able to control, to a great extent, when I’d like to be seen or not seen—it’s all been perversely liberating, which of course says less about our present circumstances than it does about our general way of things. What use is glamor, beauty, vanity during a pandemic?

Strangely though, in my home-viewing, I’ve hungrily sought out these very qualities. A couple weeks ago, I rewatched Satyajit Ray’s The Music Room, yearning to melt into the film’s tragic, feudal opulence. One sequence stayed with me long after: the Kathak performance halfway through the film, whose crescendo—a frenzied montage between the beats of the tabla and the dancer’s anklet-clad feet striking the floor—coincides with the news of the death of the protagonist’s wife and child. I was so enraptured by the scene’s perfect storm of music, emotion, and narrative that it sent me down a rabbit hole of Hindi melodramas centered on tawaifs: sophisticated courtesans trained in music, dance, theater, and literature who catered to Indian nobles, especially during the Mughal period. In history, tawaifs were highly educated and esteemed as custodians of the arts and the rules of etiquette; in most Indian movies, however, they’re portrayed as naive, fallen women craving respectability and marriage. Their most famous performances, which form the centerpieces of these films, are often abject cries for acceptance or love. These song-and-dance numbers have become catnip for me; I’m spellbound by their innuendo-laden lyrics, the lustrous costumes, the lavish mise-en-scène, and most of all, the heroines who essay the tawaifs: Madhubala in Mughal-e-Azam (1960), Rekha in Umrao Jaan (1981), Vyjayanthimala in Devdas (1955), Madhuri Dixit in the latter’s 2002 remake. I can lose myself in the delicate faces of these actresses and the stories they tell with just a flash of their eyes or the coquettish raise of a brow, withholding yet wielding desire. They’re pure examples of star texts—of figures that feel larger-than-life even on the small screen.

Inspired by your late discovery of Gilda, I decided to watch a classic tawaif film I’d never seen before, but whose songs are inscribed in my memory: Pakeezah (1972), a kind of apotheosis of the genre, known for the grandeur of its set design, the tortured story of its production, and the peerless beauty and grace—or ada, in Urdu—of its star, Meena Kumari. Known as the “Tragedy Queen,” Kumari was born to a Muslim family as Mahjabeen Bano, but—like her contemporaries Madhubala (Mumtaz Jehan Begum Dehlavi) and Dilip Kumar (Muhammad Yusuf Khan)—rose to fame under a Hinduized stage name, becoming one of Hindi cinema’s first superstar heroines. She was a Renaissance woman, accomplished as an actor, dancer, singer, and Urdu poet, writing under the pseudonym Naaz. Kumari was the third wife of the director Kamal Amrohi, who began Pakeezah as a monument—a cinematic Taj Mahal, as he described it—to his love. A film of megalomaniacal technical ambition, Pakeezah began shooting in the late 1950s, and involved many locations, exorbitant studio sets, and one of the first uses of Cinemascope in India. Four years into production, Amrohi and Kumari broke up, following which Kumari developed health issues and succumbed to alcoholism. A few years later, at Amrohi’s urging, the couple reunited to complete the film, which took three more years. In the interim, the original composer and cinematographer of the film had died and Kumari had become too unwell to finish some of the dance scenes, necessitating a body double and some strategic uses of the veil. Nevertheless, the film premiered to great pomp in Mumbai in February 1972. Then, a few weeks later, Kumari passed away.

A great and troubled beauty, and a grand and troubled production—a perfect maelstrom of Bombay glamor and decay, soaked through and through with pathos. The story is convoluted yet, at its core, exceedingly simple: a gifted courtesan claims her right to love beyond her station. In the fable-like prologue, set in a dimly lit court, a tawaif named Nargis (Kumari) performs while a magisterial narrator tells us that “countless admirers spurned by her sit at her feet as she dances.” Soon, Nargis is “rescued” and wed by a nobleman but turned away in disgust by his father. Devastated, she runs away to a cemetery, where, nine months later, she dies giving birth to a girl. The daughter, Sahibjaan (Kumari again), is raised by Nargis’s sister who vows to protect her from her mother’s fate and sends her to live and work at a palace in Delhi, where she’s renowned for her singing and dancing and coveted by local aristocrats. But a chance encounter on a train with a strange man, Salim (a tall, dark, and handsome Raaj Kapoor), changes things forever. Enamored of her henna-stained feet—i.e. her instruments of choice—he leaves her a note as she sleeps, asking her to never let her beautiful feet touch the ground and be soiled. Sahibjaan clings to this message and its promise of a transcendent love.

The plot goes on, twisting and turning with coincidences and divine interventions for a full two hours and 34 minutes: a lecherous nobleman buys Sahibjaan for a night of pleasure on a boat, during which an accident occurs (involving elephants), leaving her stranded on a shore, where she’s reunited with Salim by chance. She elopes with him, then leaves him when she’s ridiculed by the townspeople, and then, finally invited to dance at Salim’s wedding, she’s recognized by his uncle, who turns out to be her father. (Read all that over a couple times, if you need).

An alternate—and in some ways, more faithful—account of Pakeezah could consist of just descriptions of its many moments and scenes of transfixing beauty, which seem to exist for their own sake, stilling and splintering the narrative into perfect synergies of light, color, and movement: a tawaif11选5必中一个号’s twinned reflection in the sunglasses of a nobleman; Kumari (as Nargis) dancing around a flame in the film’s prologue, glittering like a moth in her bejeweled white outfit; Chowk, the street in Lucknow city where the courtesans all live and perform, a fantasia of vibrant colors, twirling women, and raucous conversation; and Kumari’s silhouette, seen through a curtain, her breast meeting the sun as she rises from sleep.

And speaking of grand entrances—when Kumari walks towards her audience in the palace in Delhi, framed by its ornate, lamp-lit facade, my heart stopped. Dressed in gorgeous green silk and golden jewelry, she moves in with a sway in her hips, just late enough that her arrival feels anticipated, then seats herself and surveys the gathered men with one single rove of her eyes, both arrogant and impish. Beauty is both power and prison in Pakeezah11选5必中一个号, a duality Kumari embodies with great feeling. The film operates within a pointedly patriarchal framework of possession and redemption (the title refers to the name Salim confers to Sahibjaan, meaning “purity”), but in submitting to Kumari’s glamor in her song-and-dance sequences, the camera seems to free the demure and sentimental Sahibjaan, bringing her to irrepressible life. Kumari was blessed with an ethereal face, angel-like yet roiled by real human emotion, but it’s what she does with it that makes her such an arresting figure on screen. Drawing on the restrained expressiveness of Kathak, her dances are a battalion of gazes—fired here, there, and back—while she ventriloquizes lines like “These are the men who lifted my veil” and “I shall see the arrows of your glances.” She oozes sensuality and demands desire, toying with the veil and its permutations of seeing and being seen, while the camera cuts frequently to close-ups of her perfectly lined, painted eyes.

But in a stirring speech towards the end of the film, Sahibjaan seems to deliver a cutting rebuke to the film’s aesthetic obsessions—including with herself. Kumari’s own troubles at the time of shooting, and her impending death, add poignancy to these lines. “We women are living corpses,” Sahibjaan says, “adorned and embalmed. Our graves are not covered, they are gaping open.”

Is she dead or alive? —Devika Girish

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168彩票怎么玩就怎么玩Liberté http://gybsgdx.cn/archive/entry/2588/liberte http://gybsgdx.cn/archive/entry/2588/liberte review Fri, 01 May 2020 00:00:00 -0400 Josh Cabrita The Clearing
11选5必中一个号 By Josh Cabrita

Liberté
Dir. Albert Serra, France/Portugal/Spain, Cinema Guild

In 1774, in the woods somewhere between Potsdam and Berlin, a libertine aristocrat banished from the court of Louis XVI tells a German nobleman about the execution of Robert-François Damiens, accused of attempted regicide, on March 28, 1757. Unprompted, he explains how Damiens’s flesh was burned and peeled with red-hot pincers, how four horses attempted and failed to dismember his limbs, how his tendons had to be cut with knives, and how the poor devil’s torso was burned at the stake while he let out shrieks of hitherto unknown anguish. This story of the public execution to end all public executions opens Albert Serra’s Liberté, setting the stage for a theater of cruelty whose methods are equally vast and varied. But if the story of this uncommonly excruciating end testifies to the despot’s control over his subjects and his ability to punish their misdeeds, the sadomasochism of Serra’s film suggests an alternative to supreme authority: emancipation from religion, societal norms, and monarchical rule—in other words, liberty in its purest and most naive form.

Michel Foucault’s Discipline and Punish—a title that could apply equally well to Serra’s sex odyssey—could help explain why the director starts his film with a story of a death from 17 years prior, when France was under a different monarch and the prospect of revolution didn’t loom so large. Foucault’s landmark text begins with two fragments that evince two very different conceptions of punishment: the first is the story of Damiens’s execution as told by a contemporaneous newspaper article, and the second is Leon Faucher’s rules “for the young prisoners in Paris,” which outlines the strictly regimented routines of juvenile delinquents in captivity. The question, then, is how, over the course of the 80 years that separate these two documents, the reigning penal program could shift from public spectacles in which punishment is directed at the body to a form of private retribution that takes “the soul” of the criminal as its site of correction. Liberté takes place in the transitional period between these styles of punishment and at a moment when the politics of the body were undergoing a drastic reversal along with the shifting apparatuses of the State. And its characters, aware of it or not, envision and practice an alternative to both paradigms.

Leave it to Serra, one of our preeminent practitioners of Slow Cinema, to kick things off with an extratextual excursion for the sole purpose of clarifying his characters’ political positions. Even though Serra’s filmography focuses almost exclusively on continental Europe in the 18th and 19th centuries, the director rarely makes his interests in the Enlightenment explicit. In Liberté, for example, the sociohistorical context of Damiens’s execution is an aside, an act of foreplay, an intimation of deeds to come. It gives meaning to the libertine’s actions, but gets us no closer to understanding the director’s method. It offers erudite viewers the opportunity to apply—or, some might say, project—various strains of knowledge, but provides no explanation as to why this milieu merits this aesthetic treatment.

Liberté expends a good deal of energy realizing its highly specific environment and then lets time—or, in this case, “duration”—do the brunt of the remaining work. Set over the course of a long, dark night of debauchery, it features a dozen subjects and a nearly equal number of flaccid penises; depicts a variety of sex acts (hetero and not, in pairs or in groups); and creates a complex geography of intersecting glances. Shrouded in secrecy or engulfed in the action, the characters cruise from one unsimulated encounter to the next. Shedding tradition and taboo, they oscillate between the roles of top and bottom, voyeur and exhibitionist, dominant and submissive, all in an attempt, as per the spiritually inflected dirty talk of the late 18th century, to “open the gates to hell.”

Such eschatological portent, indicative of a desire for Sadean release, never finds its fulfilment in Liberté11选5必中一个号. As the morning becomes imminent and the prospect of satisfaction less and less likely, Serra’s libertines are increasingly intentional in their attempts to reach climax: a woman is whipped, asking for it to be done again, harder; shackled and bare-breasted, another female hangs from a tree while being showered with milk and semen; and a one-armed man, presumably injured in the Seven Years’ War, is stabbed repeatedly with a pitchfork while being urinated on by off-screen participants. (As the human bladder doesn’t naturally carry enough liquid to satisfy his artistic intentions, Serra has said that this scene required numerous takes and multiple men to accomplish.)

One might expect, given Serra’s considerable compositional skill, that his tableaux would accentuate the latent tension of these scenarios. Indeed, the focal points and patches of privacy created by the director’s Caravaggio-like interplay of low light and controlled shadow might have been used to suggest a conflict between the push-pull of lust and caution. But lest his film be charged with trafficking in the same philistine stuff as pornography, Serra rarely, if ever, allows his erotica to be, well, erotic. Not as well versed in the art of the exaggerated orgasm as adult-film actors, Serra’s nonprofessionals are awkward and imprecise. At any given moment, it’s unclear whether we’re seeing the gestures of an actor or the involuntary movements of a body, a poor performance of pornography or a documentary account of failed orgasm. If an amateur acting workshop attempted to recreate an orgy, it would look a lot like Liberté.

The unbridgeable gap between word and deed, body and spirit, ideal and material, are the film’s primary subjects. But as much as Serra would like us to nestle metaphysical notions into discussions of his film’s limp dicks, Liberté remains modest at the level of text. Whereas the usual methods we employ for reading a narrative film might instruct us to place Liberté in its historical context, evaluate how it conforms to or challenges established notions about the period, or analyze how its form thinks through its content, the film remains frustratingly opaque even when subjected to this scrutiny. It’s operating on another plane.

Along with directors like Chantal Akerman, Jean-Luc Godard, Abbas Kiarostami, Tsai Ming-liang, and Béla Tarr, Albert Serra is one of a growing number of art filmmakers to straddle the line between the museum and the cinema. At the 2015 Venice Biennale (and later at TIFF), Serra presented Singularity, a five-screen installation. In 2018’s Roi Soleil, which revisits the fated events of The Death of Louis XIV, Lluís Serrat Masanellas, one of Serra’s frequent collaborators, acts out the monarch’s slow descent into the grave live in a gallery; the film functions as a documentation of this performance. And prior to its actualization in the form of a narrative film, Liberté 11选5必中一个号had two past lives: first as an opera and then as a two-screen installation, which uses much of the same footage as the film while rejigging the order in slight ways.

It’s understandable why these artists might want to venture beyond the confines of the cinema in the first place. While the museum allows for chance, improvisation, and site-specificity, the cinema flattens its conditions of exhibition. It’s no surprise that the innovations of 1970s conceptual art, which turned the conditions of viewing a work into the very work itself, have had little influence on cinematic practice even as they have indelibly influenced the world of art gallery video installations. But this dearth of site-specific films has nothing to do with a lack of cinema-specific knowledge in this area. For as long as there have been movies, there have been theories about them; and about as long as there have been theories about them, people have tried to explain the visual pleasure that we derive from the theatrical experience: the lights fade, the spectator sits in privacy, and the image satisfies all of his (gendered pronoun intended) knowable and unknowable desires—conditions which, come to think of it, are not all that different from those of the onscreen environment in Liberté.

As with any good 18th-century fuckabout, the ideal viewing of Liberté, whether it be in the Debussy at Cannes or the Scotiabank theatre at TIFF, would require the absolute attention, the common awe of its attendees. This experience would owe itself not to the astonishment experienced by viewers of a mainstream entertainment, but more to a collective embarrassment predicated on this film being shown in this place. It’s at this level that Liberté operates most productively: not as some revolutionary depiction of sex, but as a means of recognizing a mutual need shared by our neighbors, ourselves, and the people onscreen. How we choose to respond and tend to this need is the enduring mystery of Liberté11选5必中一个号 and cinema-going in general. Change the context, and you might see through Serra’s libertines for what they are: movie lovers—Truffaut’s sick people—in disguise.

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2020edf壹定发在线游戏First Look 2020: Searching Eva http://gybsgdx.cn/archive/entry/2666/hellenthal_first_look_searching_eva http://gybsgdx.cn/archive/entry/2666/hellenthal_first_look_searching_eva feature Wed, 29 Apr 2020 00:00:00 -0400 Caden Mark Gardner At the Museum Here I Am
Caden Mark Gardner on Searching Eva

Searching Eva was originally scheduled to play at Museum of the Moving Image's First Look Festival in March.

Disclaimer: The subject of this film went by the name Eva Collé and identified as non-binary during filming and, of course, their former namesake is the title of the film. However, they now identify in male pronouns and by the male name of Adam, which was advised to me by Searching Eva director Pia Hellenthal and independently confirmed from Collé’s own social media. This piece will refer to Collé by last name for clarity and in male pronouns.

Living a life online, and therefore living in public, can create a cesspool of negativity, but there is also something irresistible that keeps us coming back for more. Whether on Tumblr or Instagram or LiveJournal or Twitter, the push and pull of the positive possibilities versus the toxicity of social media create an underlying tension for any individual who has come of age through it. The ways in which identities and signifiers with various communities and individuals have characterized a lot of Internet culture pervade Pia Hellenthal’s film Searching Eva. Through Hellenthal’s subject, Adam Collé, the film courses with the DNA of the rushes, mood shifts, and fluidity of life online, and shows how far film has come in presenting the Internet onscreen. There have been several films—from the Unfriended franchise to CAM—that have dramatized the experience of the Internet, but Searching Eva nails a specific rhythm, due in crucial part to the participation of its real-life subject.

The genesis of the film was when Collé’s Tumblr page, titled War Variations11选5必中一个号 (owing its name to the Italian artist Amelia Rosselli’s book of poetry) caught the eye of Hellenthal and her producer Giorgia Malatrasi. They believed the personality behind this Tumblr page was capturing the zeitgeist of radical transparency online, crystallizing the previous decade’s explosion of social media. “In the very beginning, Adam said to us that he does not understand the concept of privacy,” Hellenthal told me via email. Collé’s initial perspective on being seen online and the level of scrutiny that came with that was, according to Hellenthal, “If somebody feels bad for behaving like an idiot and does not want it to be public, he should just not behave like an idiot.”

11选5必中一个号 As the film lays bare, Collé is a model, writer, and sex worker, but Collé’s own curiosity shows the inadequacy of such simple categorization. Part of that stems from his own issues growing up amidst a deeply sexist culture in Italy—his father’s own toxic masculinity, closed-mindedness, and casual misogyny were formative in his upbringing. All this led Collé to seek refuge in social media as a teenager.

Much of Collé’s self-documentation on War Variations is adapted to the screen by Hellenthal in the form on-screen vignettes and visual mimicry of the prompts and posts he publishes and the messages he receives. In quick succession, “likes” are multiplying all over the screen while Collé in voiceover recites a previously published post—the Internet as a dopamine-like shot validating your thoughts and desires. The film also shows the other side of that, presenting intrusive questions from anonymous comments that Collé still freely interacts with. These range from queries about his gender identity to outright sexual propositions, and heartless, thoughtless critiques and comments do not easily roll off his back. Hellenthal employs an unconventional film grammar with the film’s fluid nonlinearity, from its unbroken shots to shape-shifting moments where the line between reality and fiction are deliberately blurred by both subject and filmmaker. Hellenthal says the Internet is presented on-screen not so much aesthetically but to re-create the programmatic ways people use it: “The topics all connected to identity in a larger sense—like work, the body, gender, etc. So the film functions more like how we surf the Internet. Fragments from different times, people and places show up in regards to the word you typed in your search engine or the social media bubble you are in.” Hellenthal also told me that the splintered structure of the film itself was inspired by Agnès Varda’s Vagabond, though thankfully unlike in that film there is no tragic ending for its protagonist. Ultimately, she didn’t want Searching Eva to be slotted into one type of film, in the same way its subject seeks not to be pigeonholed into one identity.

Collé is upfront about his sex work, but the “John” he engages with sexually on a hotel bed in one moment in the film, per Hellenthal, was an actor (whose face was largely obscured). This decision was made in order to represent Collé’s everyday while avoiding potential exploitation. In this way it becomes a performance piece that still also remains unpredictable and improvisational while relinquishing control of the film entirely to Collé’s corner. Searching Eva is not done in the vein of a Vice–style exposé on hipster exhibitionism and nihilism, as though Collé is some reckless, directionless youth. There is a warmth to the way Hellenthal captures Collé in his bedroom, bringing to mind the work of Chantal Akerman in the way simple, static camerawork can reveal so much by showing seemingly so little. Many of these moments present Collé at his most unguarded, showing his interpersonal dynamics with family, lovers, and friends, even though his smartphone is always within reach.

Power and performance are the driving forces of Searching Eva. One can easily be cynical in considering those who choose to live in such an online fashion, as though performance is necessarily superficial and hollow—that one seeks to be seen just to be seen, and that identity becomes a form of cultural currency. Such cynicism would describe some of Collé’s harsher commenters. The “searching” in Searching Eva’s title can take on different meaning, encouraging us to ask who is doing the searching. The term can be used to describe random followers of Collé on War Variations, or Hellenthal herself, both wishing to discover what it is that an individual such as Collé offers. There are also those who are just looking, perhaps trolling, to find something “wrong” as they search over Collé’s media, a slip-up or contradiction that might provide evidence of this millennial’s navel-gazing and perceived artificiality. At the same time, Collé is actively searching himself.

Collé, who identified as non-binary during filming and who presented as androgynous and gender-queer, has since identified as a trans man and goes by the more masculine name of Adam. His openness to the possibilities of his sexuality and gender identity is clear in the film, but his current life station was disclosed after this film ended. Finding this out after first viewing the film was not particularly shocking for this trans masculine viewer, as Collé’s masculinity felt more prominent beyond a simple bob or shaved head. His gender identity now feels significant, even more representative of LGBTQ people who came of age through online outsider communities that enabled and encouraged them to come to a better idea of who they are and who they like. Social media has revolutionized the ever-changing, ever-evolving ways queer people see themselves and the world around them and helps them feel less alone. Collé emergence as a social media personality shows the changing attitudes of individuals like him but also how communities, even minority ones, need to avoid the enforcement of rigid categorizations of identities, which Collé still faces. Platforms come and go, and Tumblr is already relatively antiquated; meanwhile, the personalities and people within those platforms evolve or outgrow them. Perhaps Searching Eva11选5必中一个号, titled with its star’s old name, can represent for Collé the culmination of his past, the shedding of an older skin.

For Adam Collé, living in public is a way of life. On-screen and off, Collé persists to not be defined by anyone but himself while still being open to self-discovery. His struggles to de-compartmentalize himself and not submit to online gawking create an undeniable tension, but over time Collé has found power in the inscrutablility of his image for a large subset of followers looking at his life through their screens. Searching Eva conveys the trials, travails, and affirmations in putting it all out there and questions our response to it as viewers. As Hellenthal shows, it is not so simple as to just follow, but also to absorb, respond, search, and connect.

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20选8快乐十分开奖玩法Connected: Locke/Imitation of Life http://gybsgdx.cn/archive/entry/2665/connected_locke_imitation http://gybsgdx.cn/archive/entry/2665/connected_locke_imitation feature Mon, 27 Apr 2020 00:00:00 -0400 Ashley Clark, Beatrice Loayza Connected In this new weekly column, Connected, one writer will send another a new piece of writing about a film they have been watching and pondering over, in the hopes that this will prompt a connection—emotional, thematic, historical, or analytical—to a different film the other has been watching or is inspired to rewatch. This ongoing column will be in the spirit of many past Reverse Shot symposiums, in which writers found connections between seemingly disparate cinematic works, and it will also help us maintain personal connection among our writers and our readers at this uncertain moment.

Locke

Brooklyn Academy of Music, where I work as Director of Film Programming, temporarily closed its doors on March 14th, days before the start of Programmers’ Notebook: On Solitude, the latest edition of a recurring series I’d organized with my department colleagues. The premise of this infrequently recurring series is simple: for every incarnation of these Notebooks, each of us selects a handful of titles in response to a chosen theme. Given our present circumstances, the theme of solitude—a condition into which we’ve all been rudely thrust, to varying degrees—now seems both weirdly prescient and tragicomically apt. I had been particularly looking forward to sharing with an audience a film that was due to screen March 25: Steven Knight’s Locke11选5必中一个号, which has long fascinated, amused, absorbed, and moved me.

I first saw Locke at the Venice Film Festival (remember film festivals?) in September 2013, where it world premiered out of competition. I knew little going in, guided only by assumptions. I’d seen its charismatic star Tom Hardy incarnating various burly roughnecks in films like The Dark Knight Rises, Bronson, and Lawless, while the one-word character title put me strongly in mind of Monkfish,, which proffered a spot-on parody of the proliferation of laughably brusque, hard-nosed cops in dramas on British television in that period. I relaxed into my seat, anticipating a blast of tough, uncompromising macho business. What I got was… well, what the hell did I get?

Hardy is Ivan Locke, a well-respected builder who, at the film’s open, abandons the biggest job of his career—the largest non-nuclear facility, non-military concrete pour in European history, no less!—to drive from Birmingham to London in order to be present at the birth of his child, whose mother happens to be a one-night-stand that he barely knows. The remaining 84 minutes of this 85-minute film take place inside Locke’s car, at night, as he navigates escalating familial and professional crises with the use of only his car phone and his imagination, all while battling an insistent sniffling cold. Locke, you see, is married with kids and, despite being lashed to the highway in his BMW, has no intention of giving up on coordinating the concrete pour. Like many of us now, Locke is working remotely, under duress.

Beyond Locke’s rare status as a British road movie—as I type, only Chris Petit’s beautifully bleak Radio On (1979) comes to mind as a true contender—it is genuinely weird stuff, floating in some liminal space between mundane (a philandering, car-bound concrete merchant with a cold?) and radically experimental, not least in its resourceful formal execution. The film was shot using three digital cameras simultaneously, which were kept constantly rolling while a phone line attached to the car allowed off-screen actors—a heavyweight cast of voices including future Oscar-winner Olivia Colman, future Spider-Man Tom Holland, and future Fleabag “Hot Priest” Andrew Scott—to dial in from a conference room. The scenes were filmed in real time, with no pauses for reshoots, and Knight and team effectively shot the whole film twice nightly, for eight nights, breaking only to switch the cameras’ memory cards every 27 minutes. This immediacy is fully apparent in the imaginatively shot and edited finished product, which hurtles by in breathless, relentless style.

But really, this is the Hardy show, and he’s never been better, commanding the screen with a bracing force that hasn’t subsided for me over multiple rewatches. He’s armed with a sonorous Welsh accent that sounds like Tom Jones with a sprinkle of New Delhi (though it transpired that the man Hardy based his accent upon .) Between sniffles, Hardy rolls his ‘r’s and crunches his consonants, delivering, with thunderous glee, absurd lines that make him sound like some sort of urban planning neo-colonist:

11选5必中一个号 “Do it for the piece of sky we are stealing with our building. You do it for the air that will be displaced, and most of all, you do it for the fucking concrete. Because it is delicate as blood!”

That line in particular always makes me laugh like a drain, and Locke’s blustering insistence on the crucial importance of his concrete mission at times pushes the film into borderline camp territory. (I think here of , an essay by radical queer filmmaker Bruce LaBruce that envisions entire new categories of camp, including “Reactionary Camp” [Tyler Perry, heavy metal] to “Bad Gay Camp” [Neil Patrick Harris, Liberace], and “Bad Straight Camp” [Benny Hill, Damien Hirst]. Let’s call Locke11选5必中一个号 “Cismale Concrete Camp.”)

Yet Locke is neither a parody, endorsement, or trenchant critique of so-called toxic masculinity. Rather, it’s an especially piquant portrait of a peculiarly maudlin, self-serving strain of British manhood, one that is obsessed with fixing things, proving oneself, and always being the focal point of any emotional matrix. (Locke says “I” a hell of a lot, but, crucially, devastatingly, never once says the words “I’m sorry” to his betrayed family.) Painfully acute, too, is its depiction of the relationship between Locke and his soccer-fanatic sons, where emotion and meaning are sublimated into the coded language of sports.

Fortunately, I have a better relationship with my own father than Ivan Locke has with his (he appears to address his ghost in the rearview mirror in several vituperative, Shakespearean monologues), or seems destined to have with his own kids. Yet my dad and I, too, for so long—too long—skirted around our emotions, the real stuff, and stuck to surface level conversations, like men are wont to do. But I’ve used this lock[e]down period to finally get around to interviewing my dad, who turned 60 last year. We recorded our first hour-long conversation last week. I want to know what he was like at my age; I want to know what drove him then, what he regrets. I want to know what he doesn’t know, and wants to know, before it’s too late. Locke11选5必中一个号, in its blunt, headlong way, reminds me that intergenerational relationships need to be actively worked at, and that masculinity, or at least the performance of a certain type of masculinity, can be a destructive, deadening force.

During this shelter-in-place period, I’ve watched Locke twice already, both in the Netflix Party format, and it’s been pleasant to share my affection for the film with others even outside a cinema. It seems there’s a fair few out there who are similarly smitten with its unusual blend of melodrama, humor, bleakness, and technical élan. Over time, Locke has become my comfort film, my warm blanket, a trip I relish taking. Most of all, I do it for the fucking concrete, which, as we all know by now, is delicate as blood. —Ashley Clark

Imitation of Life

Ash, I’m struck by your ongoing project with your dad—the intimacy of such a process, and the particular blend of love, curiosity, and deference that motivates you. With the variety of my usual workday—the screenings, the office, the coffee shops—now flattened to long hours hunched over my bedroom desk or sprawled out on the couch, I talk to my mom on the phone more than usual. Our conversations are often banal, but warm and consistently funny. She provides cooking tips and I offer movie recommendations. Can you believe she enjoyed The House That Jack Built? Then again this is the same woman who once took her prepubescent daughter to Saw. Thinking back to my adolescence, I realize the image of my mother assumes contradictory forms; she was controlling, implacable, easily angered; she was also doting, tireless, generous to a fault.

Perhaps the selection rationale behind several of the movies I’ve recently chosen to watch—Hollywood classics that either evoke or directly concern mothers—is informed by my revitalized bond with mom, and by the resulting memories of past squabbles and screeching that float to the surface. One of the first films I turned to once D.C. entered lockdown was Whatever Happened to Baby Jane?—which is not about mothers per se, but stars in-real-life bad moms Joan Crawford and Bette Davis. In the same essay you mentioned, Bruce LaBruce refers to the duo as the “twin peaks of classic camp,” in part because they failed to become nurturing mothers. Both Crawford and Davis were eviscerated in their daughters’ memoirs, which gave sensationalist (and partly discredited) accounts of the actresses as evil, abusive mothers. I imagine the monstrous, sadistic old spinster Davis plays in Baby Jane didn’t seem too far from how her daughter perceived her mother in the first place.

At the opposite end of the spectrum are the Hollywood melodramas about mothers who love too hard for their own good. These films burst with sincerity and plumb the pathos that comes with unreasonable self-sacrifice, which makes them particularly suited to unleashing the cleansing powers of a good cry. This might explain my recent fixation—we could all benefit from the catharsis of tears. To ensure her daughter’s social advancement, Barbara Stanwyck surrenders her little girl to her ex-husband and his well-to-do new family in Stella Dallas (1937); in Mildred Pierce (1945), Joan Crawford marries a sniveling, self-proclaimed “loafer” to secure a luxurious new house that might entice her estranged daughter to come home, and later she tries taking the fall for her daughter’s crime of passion; Jane Wyman’s children in All That Heaven Allows (1955) effectively shame their mother into breaking her engagement with Rock Hudson’s outdoorsman, only to reveal they plan on moving out anyway.

The narrative of the martyr mother reaches its apotheosis in another Douglas Sirk classic, Imitation of Life 11选5必中一个号(1959), a film that I had the pleasure of being moved—and at times, shocked—by for the very first time.

Predictably, Lana Turner and her suitors loom large in the American posters and DVD artwork for the film, yet the drama of that storyline, about Lora, an aspiring actress who prioritizes her craft and career over her daughter and her romantic prospects, pales in comparison to the devastation and emotional turmoil that meets Annie, Lora’s dedicated Black nanny and confidante. Annie, played by a remarkable Juanita Moore, has a daughter herself, and it is her daughter’s well-being that leads the single mother to volunteer her services free of charge to Lora in exchange for room and board. She is maternal devotion taken to impossible heights, an early instance of, per Hilton Als in The Women, certain Black women as “symbol[s] of America’s by-now forgotten strain of puritanical selflessness.” Annie mothers everyone around her, meaning everyone comes before her: Lora, Lora’s daughter, and of course her beloved Sarah Jane.

Yet the teenage Sarah Jane, rendered with fire and fury by Susan Kohner, wants nothing to do with Annie for reasons completely out of her mother’s control. Light-skinned (Kohner is in fact not a Black woman), Sarah Jane easily passes for white, an identity she views at an early age as an ideal. As a teenager, it becomes clear to Sarah-Jane that the only thing standing in her way from assuming this platonic form is her mother, whom she eventually rejects and disowns to pursue life as a white chorus girl. In a heartbreaking adieu, Annie wordlessly acquiesces when Sarah-Jane explains to her baffled roommate that Annie is merely her childhood nanny. In effect, she consents to her own erasure. Annie dies from heartbreak, but her death has the same effect as a final act of devotion, a fulfillment of her daughter’s greatest desire.

Sarah Jane’s change of heart comes too late, and at the film’s close she’s seen running hysterically into the procession crowd and thrusting her body onto her mother’s coffin. (In Twin Peaks, Leland Palmer also throws his body on Laura’s coffin as its lowered underground—he was also guilty.) The huge scandal of Sarah Jane’s mortal betrayal, the fallout of spectacular proportions—there’s something so visceral and freeing about such an unhinged display of despair and emotion flailing and spattering about. We’re all feeling it; it feels good to see someone doing it. —Beatrice Loayza

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123的彩的新的彩的网Earthly Origins http://gybsgdx.cn/archive/entry/2664/earthly_origins_our_house http://gybsgdx.cn/archive/entry/2664/earthly_origins_our_house feature Fri, 24 Apr 2020 00:00:00 -0400 Edo Choi Our House Earthly Origins
by Edo Choi

11选5必中一个号 Born into a generation weaned on home video, I recall always having a vague sense that the theatrical movie experience was distinct and special, but I only began to form a consciousness of how, and why it was worth defending, while attending the University of Chicago. The conversion occurred at Doc Films (affectionately, just Doc), the University’s film society. I reside and work in New York City now, but it’s the people I met at and through Doc, the immediate environment of the Hyde Park neighborhood, and the larger city of Chicago that continue to feel like my true home in respect to cinema. Doc wasn’t the birthplace of my interest in movies, but it gave me an experience of them as a communal and tactile pursuit.

Decades before the formalization of academic film study and the advent of home video, film societies arose as a grassroots movement for the cultivation of what today we might call an alternative film culture. The likes of Amos Vogel’s Cinema 16 repurposed the 16mm rental market, geared toward institutional spaces, to express a localized curatorial sensibility and address an audience the mainstream film industry considered marginal. Founded in 1940 as the Documentary Film Group, Doc entered this history as a society for the study of the nonfiction film. By the fifties, the group had become a genuinely activist enterprise, showing banned films like Salt of the Earth11选5必中一个号 and hosting avant-garde filmmakers like Maya Deren. At the height of Andrew Sarris’s influence in the sixties, the society developed into a stronghold of auteurism with a reputation for producing particularly zealous film critics. “He’s one of those ‘Doc Films’ types,” wrote Roger Ebert of Dave Kehr, once Doc’s president. “He’d apparently seen every film ever made by the age of 20…” In 1987, Max Palevsky endowed the renovation of the gymnasium at the University’s Ida Noyes Hall into a nearly 500-seat cinema. From that point forward, Doc operated as something like a genuine, non-theatrical venue with 35mm projection, repertory programming that ran throughout the week, and second-runs that brought in money on the weekends—a model which, more or less, continues today.

For me, Doc was a time and place of pure discovery, before such inconvenient considerations as earning a living and charting a career path entered the picture. It’s where, in my first year alone, I discovered not only Jacques but Maurice Tourneur; where I became acquainted with Robert Ryan and, through him, Max Ophuls and Nicholas Ray; and where I saw an epochal screening of Douglas Sirk’s Imitation of Life, the climax of which literally raised the hair at the back of my neck. Not all of Doc’s quarterly calendars were created equal, but the organization’s democratic programming model, where any and all comers were invited to propose series and participate in quarterly votes, afforded a breathtaking diversity of historic and aesthetic interests. Summer 2008, the first quarter over which I presided as programming chair, a role I would hold for the better part of the next three years, was a cinephile’s paradise from silents (F.W. Murnau’s Tabu) to avant-garde features (Joyce Wieland’s La raison avant la passion, Larry Jordan’s Sophie’s Place) to auteurist deep cuts (Andre de Toth’s Slattery’s Hurricane, Raoul Walsh’s The Bowery). The following autumn quarter, I remember with fondness the niche survey “Oy, Revolt!: Socialism, Modernity and Political Intrigue in Yiddish Cinema,” which included Edgar Ulmer’s sublime, seldom-seen The Light Ahead. Last but not least, in Spring 2009, we mounted a personal dream program on the New Taiwan Cinema, for which the distributor struck a new 35mm print of Hou Hsiao-hsien’s A City of Sadness.

We enacted at Doc a kind of living, open-ended film seminar—only a handful of us chose to pursue the University’s Cinema and Media Studies major—with the freedom to follow our curiosities unburdened by traditional canons, hierarchies of taste, or academic narratives of film historical progress. Doc promoted whatever cinema any one programmer could convince the rest was worth promoting, delved into whichever obscure nook of film history seemed worth excavating. Although one of us might poke irreverent fun at another’s overzealous pronouncements or far-out stances, we always remained supportive of each other’s efforts in practice—a true community. Doc didn’t just allow us to access film history; it allowed us to express, in however humble a fashion, our own place within it and within contemporary film culture, one that only lives as a social endeavor carried out and fulfilled in a collective space.

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New York City is known for its unmatched wealth of film venues. I was born and raised here, but like many of my peers who moved to the city during or after college I’ve often felt like a lonely migrant to its sprawling nexus of repertory film programs, art houses, film festivals, and museums, as well as the throng of dedicated programmers, distributors, filmmakers, and writers, not to mention audiences, who enrich and sustain it. As with most aspects of the city’s cultural life, film in New York comprises more of a scene than a community, which is not to diminish the genuine forms of community so many of us strive to cultivate. Indeed, right now, communal gestures such as the Cinema Workers Solidarity Fund seem like the only sources of practical recourse and spiritual uplift we have, especially for those of us who, hopefully only for the short term, have lost our livelihoods.

If New York has felt like a second home in cinema for me personally, it’s not only because of how large Doc has loomed but also because I did not initially discover my passion for film at a Film Forum or Film Society of Lincoln Center. As a child, my parents and I frequented the now long gone Olympia Theatre on Broadway at 107th Street (then operated by Cineplex Odeon), the likewise defunct Clearview Metro Twin at 99th Street (the building still stands unfilled today), and the gigantic Sony Theatres (now AMC Loews) Lincoln Square at 68th, the opening of which in 1994 I vaguely recall with its then-novel IMAX screen and kitsch mockups of old movie palaces adorning the auditorium entrances. These mausoleums of mass entertainment remain forever associated in my memory with the likes of Star Trek: Generations and Crimson Tide, Jumanji and The Rock, Bowfinger and Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me.

Revelation, however, only first struck in the private space of the home, first on VHS, and later the futuristic-seeming DVD with its promise of superior quality and special features. I was a little too young and square to have known about the East Village’s storied Kim’s Video, but on the Upper West Side I did have Gary Dennis’s Movie Place, the scrupulously amassed collection of which kept family movie nights packed through my high school years.

An elder film critic once wrote me that the transmission we receive from a work of art, the greatness we perceive in it as that direct umbilicus from the artist(s) awareness to our own, “is a fragile accord between a lot of contingencies—never ultimate, always provisional.” In this sense, material conditions of reception might be, well, immaterial. “You change, your mood changes, your angle of vision changes in ways you can’t account for.” What difference does it make if you experience a film at home alone or with family as opposed to experiencing it in a theater with a crowd, let alone on a large screen as opposed to a little one, or even on a 35mm print as opposed to a DCP? Putting aside considerations of audiovisual fidelity, and, when it comes to experimental films in particular, of medium and site specificity, most of the time it’s not the film that changes, but we who change. The question of what we really lose when there are no longer any movie theaters loses its salience and urgency if we view it too closely from within the logic of particular films we’ve seen and film experiences we’ve had.

At age twelve, I experienced the epiphany of Goodfellas on tape. Watching the Steadicam glide through the underbelly of the Copa, my mind lit up with the recognition that movies were made by people, not beamed down from on high. All this had been carefully orchestrated for my benefit in accordance with someone else’s peculiar, and, in this case, peculiarly seductive, vision of the world. I’ve seen Goodfellas 11选5必中一个号many times since that day, including once on 35mm in the Sumner Redstone Theater at Museum of the Moving Image, where I had the honor of privilege of working for the last year. Over time, Scorsese’s film has risen and fallen and risen again in my esteem, but no matter how great a film I assess it to be at any given point in my life, I don’t think I’ll ever recover the shock and rapture of that first experience, which did not occur at the cinema.

On the other hand, I saw another film for the first time during the Museum’s Scorsese retrospective, the often maligned The Color of Money. Here is a film that might not compare to its iconic predecessor The Hustler in terms of the weight of its action or the stakes of its storyline, but Color11选5必中一个号 is all about luxuriating in a certain atmosphere, in thickly evoked sensations of taste and smell, and in the dizzy motions and cadences of the game of pool itself. In other words, it’s a film of and about tangible pleasures as only cinema can convey them. I’m sure it does the trick on Blu-ray; on 35mm it laps you up.

I think cinema, if not so much the movies, has something precisely to do with this haptic register: the almost synesthetic sensation of an audiovisual experience becoming a palpably felt one, or perhaps, more simply, the feeling that the screen, and the space it contains, reaches down to touch you and that you in turn might reach up to touch it. It would probably be folly to try to elaborate this intuition into a coherent theory of the phenomenological difference between the cinema screen and other types of screens, or between the digital and photochemical image. For now, I can only submit, that the moment I became aware of an experiential distinction between these sets of conditions, the haptics of cinema spaces, even those whose images are digitally projected, have always felt more sympathetically and rhetorically potent than those of home spaces.

11选5必中一个号 Today I keep returning to something Stan Brakhage said: “I’m involved in touch, in touching, in knowing people, in dealing with them in three dimensions, in smell, and so on, not obliquely through some laser beam reconstruction…” Every time I think of a friend, colleague, or family member I have been unable to see, embrace, or simply share physical space-time with, I think of these words. And every time I watch a film on my computer, I think of the loss of that same space-time relationship with respect to a film, how the viewing experience feels, regardless of how high or low the resolution, somehow diminished and distant, thinner and fainter. I yearn for the signs of physical contact that are unique to cinema, and especially to 16mm and 35mm film projection, those qualities that quicken our hearts like grain and flicker, or, absent those, the basic sense of shared concentration in public space as at a house of worship, of illusory distances on screen that nonetheless become physically measurable in terms of relative scale and distance to the screen itself.

This familiar mise-en-scène of the cinema space finally feels more agreeable to my sense of myself as a physical being than the space-time vaporizing mise en abyme of online streaming and other forms of home viewing. In a cinema, a movie affects me like a happening, almost, as André Bazin famously put it, “a natural phenomenon… a flower or snowflake whose beauty is inseparable from its earthly origin.” I’m not arguing for a new ontological construct, merely, as Bazin in fact himself was, pointing out a psychological fact. Perhaps we need Bazin now more than ever in the era of content, a little dose of classical realism to cure our reality apathy.

***

I saw many great movies for the first time at Doc, but more than the film history I acquired there, I feel I learned to distinguish and value cinema itself as I’ve attempted to define it above. Certainly to be at Doc in the late 2000s was to learn to appreciate the physicality of film with a peculiar acuity. At that point, 35mm was still the chief format for both theatrical and non-theatrical distribution, as well as repertory circulation. In my first couple years, nearly every film Doc screened we did so on either 35mm or 16mm prints. Simultaneously, our awareness of the coming digital changeover heightened our sensitivity to the fragility of the state of affairs under which we were operating. The projection booth at Doc remains a sacred space in my mind with its pair of Simplex XLs, affectionately nicknamed Evelyn and Wanda, and the giant painted black silhouette of the Tingler, in honor of William Castle’s classic gimmick film of the same name, that adorns its front wall. It was under that sign that I learned to inspect, prep, thread up and run film.

One print I both projected and watched, and that I’ll never forget, was a pristine copy of Hou Hsiao-hsien’s Millennium Mambo, which we booked from Palm Pictures in that beautiful summer of 2008. There’s perhaps no better film to encapsulate the change my relationship to cinema had undergone since the night I watched Goodfellas. Scorsese had been my first inspiration, but Hou Hsiao-hsien had grown most important to me in my first two years at Doc. He remains a favorite filmmaker, one whose work has always felt uniquely attuned to the origins of cinema as a modern art form, bound up in the twin legacies of industrial capitalism and colonialism. The cinema screen itself is constantly referenced in Hou’s films, from the sudden apparition of an actual screen flapping in the wind in a rural village square in Dust in the Wind to the vacant movie theater where the bumper car sequence of Bresson’s Mouchette plays against the blank wall where a screen once hung in the exquisite short The Electric Princess Picture House.

As I watched Millennium Mambo at Doc, it seemed to speak eloquently to a world where the haptic, that relationship to others and to our own lived environment through direct physical contact, was already giving way to the borderless spaces and smoothed out surfaces of a digital existence. Its ending is a vision of an empty, snow-covered street by night, bedecked with old movie posters, in the former coal mining town of Yubari in Hokkaido, Japan. The posters are hung for a film festival, but Hou never shows the event itself. Instead, he invites us to contemplate these images as inexplicable relics from a remote past, gradually disappearing under a blanket of snow. The town’s post-industrial context gives this scene a hint of the apocalyptic, but it feels more mournful than final, a glimpse of what movies might become without cinemas to house them.

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12选5浙江爱彩乐奖金Connected: Defending Your Life/The Lusty Men http://gybsgdx.cn/archive/entry/2662/connected_defending_lusty http://gybsgdx.cn/archive/entry/2662/connected_defending_lusty feature Mon, 20 Apr 2020 00:00:00 -0400 Eric Hynes, Chloe Lizotte Connected In this new weekly column, Connected, one writer will send another a new piece of writing about a film they have been watching and pondering over, in the hopes that this will prompt a connection—emotional, thematic, historical, or analytical—to a different film the other has been watching or is inspired to rewatch. This ongoing column will be in the spirit of many past Reverse Shot symposiums, in which writers found connections between seemingly disparate cinematic works, and it will also help us maintain personal connection among our writers and our readers at this uncertain moment.

Defending Your Life

It doesn’t take a master shrink to figure out why I might be reaching for Albert Brooks’s Defending Your Life 11选5必中一个号at a time like this. Day upon day of solitary subsistence, self-reflection, and self-reckoning, and general futurelessness funnels quite naturally to mortal regrets and doubts, to thinking jags that systematically strip away each layer of one’s accumulated self, leaving one naked to the bone and alone at night with only themost mortifying memories as a duvet, and maybe, if one’s lucky, terrestrial television, with its balmy reruns and corporeally grounding catheter commercials, as an intervening sheet. The days are a double helix of coping and disemboweling.

Defending Your Life came out when I was in high school, which means I was old enough to understand what was at stake, to have experienced regret and anxiety, but not old enough to have accumulated a U-Haul’s worth of the stuff. Nevertheless I’ve carried the concept of the film with me since that spring 1991 viewing at Staten Island’s UA Theaters—at the western edge of Victory Boulevard, across the S.I. Expressway from the racket ball and tennis facility deftly named “Courts of Appeals,” and adjacent to the then still-active and very pungent world famous Fresh Kills Landfill. I’ve no doubt the film was on my mind a few months later when, after an opening night viewing of Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves at the same theater, I sped my grey-blue Bonneville down the wrong side of an empty Victory Boulevard, mid-dispute with my best (and, miraculously, current) friend, threatening (promising?) to direct us into a telephone pole. We were miserably unhappy young men, prone to these outbursts and threats, and thankfully our third friend, who was slightly less miserable—or at least seemed to be—shouted “I want to live!” from the backseat, jerking us back to our senses, resulting in laughter and apologies and a false sense that we wouldn’t be thinking about that moment for the rest of our lives. It’s one of a dozen or two moments that I can still play back in my mind like a scene from a film, forensically rewinding and replaying, an impulse that Albert Brooks brilliantly nails with Defending Your Life.

In the film, he plays Daniel Miller, an ad exec whose demise at the wheel of a brand new car triggers five days in Judgment City, where he’s charged with reviewing nine scenes from his life, in the company of attorneys (Rip Torn and Lee Grant!) and judges—it’s not a trial, they reassure him, but it’s obviously a trial—to determine whether he’s advanced enough to move ahead to a higher plane. Shown in courtrooms that double as screening rooms, the scenes that Daniel revisits aren’t distinctive, they’re actually quite generic—being taunted by bullies and not responding, witnessing parents fighting, experiencing stage fright at a big public speaking event—but that’s partly the point. That they haunt Daniel is more important than whether they’re objectively egregious or consequential. That they’re more representative than specific actually allows us, as viewers, to replace his memories with our own.

Revisiting the film now, it’s newly apparent how generously Brooks treats Daniel, whose whole existence in Judgment City is pitched toward an inevitably dissatisfying judgment. The goal of human life on earth, as posited by the film, is to transcend our fears, to act with bravery and behave with a sense of serene selflessness, which of course he fails to live up to, which of course we all do. Brooks is a master at creating protagonists who are relatable shitheads, endearing minor-key sociopaths, essentially liberal American males who want life to mean something but also want what’s owed to them. Yet between Daniel’s generic memories and the brief opening scenes on the day of his death (also his birthday), Brooks gives us very little reason to dislike or distance ourselves from him. He spends basically no time bemoaning his lost life, and instead adjusts the best he can to the purgatorial state of things in Judgment City, realized by production designer Ida Random and captured by the great cinematographer Allen Daviau—who tragically died just this week from COVID-19—as a mildly creepy amusement park ride version of Los Angeles, complete with a tram-exclusive transportation system, insouciant eau de office park, and all-you-can-eat restaurants (which Daviau never fails to punctuate with close-ups of very ordinary looking, if heaping, plates of food). Almost immediately Daniel falls in love with Julia (Meryl Streep), an evidently more advanced human (or former human) who nevertheless falls immediately in love with him in turn. It’s the kind of impossible, wish-fulfilling male fantasy that dominates romantic comedies, except it’s positioned literally within a fantastical realm.

The film puts Daniel in a place where he’s destined to fail, accounting for the fact that he lived as a flawed, fearful human being. To wish for his demise or condemnation is to judge myself in the same light, and while that’s my strong natural tendency, Brooks’s film instills empathy on at least the level of universal human fallacy. Julia’s destined for a better place: the scene in which Daniel walks into her courtroom to find the lawyers and judges mooning over footage of her saving her children and the family cat from a house fire is low-key the funniest in the film, sold by a beaming Streep curling up in her hot-seat like she’s watching an old Hollywood musical. But she’s also attracted to the human-ness of Daniel. Their relationship, improbably forged over a few evening strolls (though rhyming economically well with other silver screen meet-cute romances), is intentionally elemental. Daniel isn’t special, in fact he’s aggressively not special, and while Julia obviously is special, she doesn’t seem to be saddled by notions of who this object of her infatuation could or should be. She’s a subordinate character, but her motivations and emotions remain open to inquiry. My read is that, freed from existences in which she was inevitably frustrated by partners who couldn’t live up to their potential, the afterlife affords elective adoration; and in turn, Daniel’s own inadequacies, actual or perceived, are less of a roadblock to adoring her in turn—he’s offering less self-sabotaging resistance to their magnetic pull.

Eventually, at least. That he only uses 3% of his brain, rather than the attorneys, who all use somewhere between 46-53% of theirs, is a joke on Daniel, except the reality is that every person watching the film is in the same boat, will only ever be in that boat. We can sit in our silos and expect better of ourselves, and some regret can lead to better decisions going forward, but we can’t expect the impossible. The scenes we carry we’ll always carry. They’re often not pretty, but we’re less ourselves without them, regardless of what we make of them. Daniel’s last line in his defense, which rings hollow in the courtroom, sounds, well, more defensible from our current vantage. “I’ll do the best that I can.” —Eric Hynes

The Lusty Men

Eric, I really relate to that hermetic sense of psychological panic you describe. There’s no chance of conventional mental peace in this isolating maelstrom of dread, so on my end, it’s been a strange few weeks of “viewing,” when I’m able to focus. I tend to narcotize the inner monologue with comedy—and coincidentally enough, that rotation has included Albert Brooks’s concept album A Star Is Bought. But when I break away from the likes of , I’m pretty simplistically longing for open spaces, and with it, the bigness that you’d sink into in a movie theater. That’s all pulled me back to a mid-century American melancholy that I’ve always found therapeutic, whether the lost 1970s Los Angeles that Eve Babitz limns out in the stories of Slow Days, Fast Company, or the forebodingly scaled CinemaScope tableaux in Bad Day at Black Rock, or the nightmarish fictional Mojave in Rick Alverson’s Monte Hellman–indebted Entertainment.

So what you’re saying about wanting life to mean something while tacitly hoping for some kind of payoff, which Brooks embodies with such pathos, makes me think about having recently pressed play on Nicholas Ray’s The Lusty Men. I don’t think anyone is better than Ray when it comes to the roiling existential internals—even at his most maximalist, he lets angst breathe in a way that invites us closer to his characters. Much of that intimacy, and dare I say relatability, comes from just how fundamental their desires are, even beyond a fierce, period-appropriate tussle with social conformity. It’s a stunning bit of exposition to watch Robert Mitchum’s Jeff McCloud, reduced to a pinprick within a wide shot of a deserted rodeo arena, solitarily make his way back to a nondescript rundown shack, crawl through the cobwebs underneath, and unearth the few toys, a gun and a cowboy magazine, that remain from his childhood. In a minute, he moves from the inciting accident that ends his rodeoing career to the naïve beginnings of it all, and cuts a chasm between what was yet to take place and what’s since come to pass.

This film is a taut triangle of personalities and wants: McCloud, out of the rodeo game after paying the price of a few ribs, becomes entangled with a married couple (Susan Hayward and Arthur Kennedy) with dreams of owning their own ranch, who are saving up to buy McCloud’s old home. But when Kennedy’s Wes gets a taste for the adrenaline rush, masculine glory, and quick cash of rodeoing, he enlists McCloud as his coach and offers him a 50 percent cut of his earnings. This is all much to the chagrin of Hayward’s Louise, who manages the household finances and longs for a stable, safe, ordinary life—which, for a movie so preoccupied with impossible masculine ideals, is a dream that doesn’t feel condescended to, which makes it all the more harrowing. Louise is in too deep when Wes loses himself to his ego and the momentary escapist highs, and anxiously frets—knows—that his luck could run out in an instant. (Footage of actual rodeo spills certainly raise the stakes, and Ray gives no illusions of lasting glory—Wes’s triumphant bull ridings pass at a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it clip.) Meanwhile, McCloud experiences a similar pining for steadiness as an attraction quietly builds for Louise, and as the rodeo tour progresses, they both watch Wes succumb to heavy drinking and womanizing.

For all the melodrama of these plot crescendos, they seem a natural defense against a life with no guarantees. Otherwise, the world is quietly banal, which turns those gestures into perennial flailings—that futility of grasping what’s out of reach, or living up to the what-ifs.The entire cycle couldn’t be more instinctual. When Jacques Rivette wrote on the film in 1953 for Cahiers du cinéma (sigh), he saw that Ray’s eye for ordinary detail led him to channel an exquisite anxiety rooted in “paroxysm, which imparts something of the feverish and impermanent to the most tranquil of moments.” It’s a chill born of panic, out of nowhere, that everything is wrong, and the accompanying, desperate fumbling for a redemptive way out. It’s human nature as a struggle against a lack of control. There’s something earnest, with a twist, of that type of denial in Brooks’s comedy—I also feel it in Lost in America and Modern Romance—and I think you’re right that it’s only human to own it on some level, which is most likely painful or cringe-y (at least, those moods make up the nine scenes I replay in my head). There’s no other way. By that token, though, it makes me feel a little less remote to watch people strain against it all the same. —Chloe Lizotte

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2020无押金微信红包群First Look 2020: Transnistra http://gybsgdx.cn/archive/entry/2663/transnistra_first_look http://gybsgdx.cn/archive/entry/2663/transnistra_first_look feature Mon, 20 Apr 2020 00:00:00 -0400 Susannah Gruder At the Museum Teenage Wasteland
Susannah Gruder on Transnistra

Transnistra was originally scheduled to play at Museum of the Moving Image's First Look Festival in March.

Anna Eborn first met the young woman who would become the protagonist of Transnistra outside a gas station one night. Eborn was looking for subjects for her latest film by approaching people on the street, as she does for all her projects, when she encountered 16-year-old Tanya standing with a group of friends.

There was something about Tanya’s mix of strength and vulnerability that felt familiar to Eborn. “She reminded me of the main character in one of the films of the brothers Dardenne,” Eborn told me over the phone from her home in Stockholm. More specifically, she had echoes of Émilie Dequenne playing the titular role in Rosetta (1999), which follows a brutally determined young woman living in poverty as she tries to secure a job and care for her alcoholic mother. Eborn was looking to cast teenagers growing up in Transnistria, a border state that seceded from Moldova in 1992 out of loyalty to Russia, but remains unrecognized as a sovereign nation by the international community. Transnistria is the country’s “foreign” name, but for locals it’s known as Priednestrovie. Explaining why she removed the second “i” from the film’s title, Eborn says, “I wanted a title that indicated where it takes place for non-Russian speakers but not necessarily a name that was a description of the country.” Holdovers from the country’s Soviet past can be felt at times throughout her film, from a glimpse of a military ceremony celebrating their youth recruits and praising Fidel Castro, to a handful of brutalist buildings abandoned mid-construction, now serving as a playground for the adventurous. But for Eborn, the focus of Transnistra11选5必中一个号 is more personal than political. “My work begins next to the character,” she said. “There’s a world around them that’s potent, it’s alive somehow. The inspiration comes from this person.”

The emotionally driven Transnistra is fueled by the whims of Tanya and her coterie of male friends. There’s little mention of their country’s past or the characters’ own futures—like any teenagers, they’re firmly grounded in the present. The film opens as Eborn follows the pack along bucolic riverbanks and wooded paths, through fields of wild grass and buildings on the brink of collapse. There’s a romantic charm to every locale they inhabit, as if time has stopped just for them. Tanya behaves as both “one of the boys” and the object of their affection. Walter Hus’s otherworldly score of ambient bossa nova plays while we’re introduced to the characters as though participants on a dating show: Tolya, Sasha, Denis, Burulya, Dima—each more handsome and brooding than the next. Cinematographer Virginie Surdej captures their youthful energy on richly textured 16mm film, the late-afternoon sun illuminating their tanned skin. The group has apparently mastered the art of doing nothing: long shots linger as they lie by the river, cigarettes in hand, assembled like the trio in Manet’s Le Déjeuner sur lherbe.

Here, Tanya is exuberant and carefree (qualities she does not share with Eborn’s inspiration Rosetta), putting forth a sense of confidence as she gently teases and encourages her friends. But underneath her upbeat veneer there’s the hint of a painful past as she alludes to harming herself following several heartbreaks. “Do you love me?” she asks Sasha, her flavor of the week, as they visit her ex-boyfriend’s gravesite. Tanya doesn’t explain how he died, but it’s clear she’s still processing his loss. “Why did you do it to yourself?” Her endearing little brother Vanya asks when he sees the scars on her wrists. “You should have asked me. I could have cut them.” Along with Vanya, Tolya sets himself apart from the pack as someone Tanya can really trust, as he reveals his own insecurities about what he refers to as his “illness,” a disability that impacts his vision and speech (and is difficult to pick up on if you don’t speak Russian). Though he has trouble reciting the months of the year backwards during a doctor’s assessment in order to gain disability status, Tolya is by far the most intelligent of the pack, building up a stark cynicism toward his bleak-looking future in Transnistria. His own candidness seems to make Tanya feel safe as she reveals her darker thoughts, their genuine friendship eclipsing any kind of flirtation.

Eborn says that Tanya’s toughness, wrought from hardship, also reminded her of Linda Manz’s performance in Dennis Hopper’s Out of the Blue (1980). “Sometimes you see a picture in the museum and you realize that that’s the right reference,” she explains. “Or you meet a character and the character reminds you of a person in a film.” Tanya, like Manz, escapes any efforts to pin down her exact age. From some angles she looks like she could be nine years old; at others, 19. As she hitchhikes on the side of the road one hazy afternoon, Tanya recalls Cebe, Manz’s 15-year-old punk, who hitchhikes her way into trouble in an effort to escape her dysfunctional family. Like Hopper’s film, Transnistra is propelled by the movements of its protagonist, whose on-screen presence is as captivating as Manz’s.

11选5必中一个号 Less concerned with plot than with capturing emotion, Eborn hands over the reins to her subjects. “Every word they tell me is the truth,” she says. “If Tanya tells me a story I’m gonna trust it.” The agency she gives to her characters is there from the beginning—since she casts on the street, she develops the story based on her subjects’ experiences, following them where they lead. “People on camera need to feel like they can do nothing wrong,” Eborn says. She was deeply influenced by Agnès Varda’s method of filmmaking. Eborn recited for me a quote from a talk Varda gave in Stockholm that she attended: “When I make fiction I am the god. And when I make documentaries I am always below my subjects.”

11选5必中一个号 Shooting on 16mm also helped Eborn to build a deeper relationship with her characters. Since she and Surdej were far from the lab, they weren’t reviewing their footage in real time, instead constructing the film’s narrative based on their memories of each shoot. “We didn’t get so obsessed with frames or the image, but rather we started to discuss the emotional aspects of what we think we gathered that day.” Shooting documentary on film, where you can only shoot ten minutes at a time as opposed to recording hours of digital footage, could be said to limit some of the spontaneity from the practice. But for Eborn, this is a strength. Shooting digitally for hours can be exhausting and disorienting for anyone not used to being on camera, Eborn says. “They don’t know where the movie’s going.” But with film, “to roll, it means something now, so everyone is more focused. [...] They are feeling when the action is.”

It’s difficult to classify Transnistra11选5必中一个号 as either documentary or fiction, but Eborn’s self-awareness as a filmmaker is refreshing—her cognizance of the artifice inherent in capturing non-actors on camera makes for a nonfiction work with a different kind of honesty than something more ostensibly objective. “Tanya occasionally acts,” Eborn says. “But that’s how she is in real life. She plays with people.”

By the end of the film, Tanya’s learned how to direct as well. Perched atop a roofless ruin in town, Tanya and Tolya are saying goodbye. She’s about to leave the country, presumably for Athens, though it’s left unclear. They embrace, in what Eborn initially thought would be the last shot of the film. But the scene continues. Tanya wants to make a music video. She’s learned to shoot by watching Anna, and she moves around Tolya, now her subject, as he soulfully belts out the lyrics to a pop ballad. “I thought that scene was done,” Eborn tells me. “And then Tanya was like, oh it’s not really done.”

11选5必中一个号 Top photo credit: Vladislav Kamenskyy

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11选五开奖天津Connected: Donkey Skin/Thank God It's Friday http://gybsgdx.cn/archive/entry/2661/donkey_skin_connected_friday http://gybsgdx.cn/archive/entry/2661/donkey_skin_connected_friday feature Mon, 13 Apr 2020 00:00:00 -0400 Chris Wisniewski, Farihah Zaman Connected In this new weekly column, Connected, one writer will send another a new piece of writing about a film they have been watching and pondering over, in the hopes that this will prompt a connection—emotional, thematic, historical, or analytical—to a different film the other has been watching or is inspired to rewatch. This ongoing column will be in the spirit of many past Reverse Shot symposiums, in which writers found connections between seemingly disparate cinematic works, and it will also help us maintain personal connection among our writers and our readers at this uncertain moment.

We have turned to the movie musical in times of social unease, more or less, since the invention of the talkie. So it should be no surprise that a Depression-era song-and-dance picture like the 1933 Busby Berkeley/Lloyd Bacon film Footlight Parade offered me a measure of solace this week, as we sit perched on the precipice of another economic catastrophe to rival the thirties. So dazzlingly wacky are Berkeley’s climactic numbers like “Honeymoon Hotel,” featuring a mischievous Billy Barty terrorizing couples at a disreputable spot for horny newlyweds, and “Shanghai Lil” with a yellow-faced Ruby Keeler as the prostitute who stole Navy guy Jimmy Cagney’s heart, that you might actually forget your troubles for at least a few minutes. Berkeley basically perfected the musical number as escapist utopian fantasy.

It’s a little more difficult to set aside the jaw-droppingly casual racism—Cagney’s Chester Kent conceives the famous “By a Waterfall” number after seeing a group of African American children playing at an open fire hydrant, and remarking how extraordinary a similar scene would be if it featured “beautiful white bodies”—but… Well, I actually have no way of resolving that sentence. The racism is just a problem. It is also, however, illustrative of a latent tension in the musical genre, its inability to ever fully resolve its impulse towards melodic rhapsody with the messiness of real people and the repressive, oppressive, dysfunctional social structures they create.

As the genre matured, its most savvy purveyors didn't shy away from this contradiction. Few did so with the stylistic panache of Jacques Demy, who with late sixties classics like The Umbrellas of Cherbourg and The Young Girls of Rochefort blew up the genre while offering some of its sweetest virtuosic delights, abetted by the incomparable composer Michel Legrand and luminous performers like Gene Kelly and Catherine Deneuve. This project reached what was perhaps an apotheosis with 1970’s Donkey Skin11选5必中一个号, a (quite literally) perverse fairy tale musical that found Demy once again working with Legrand as well as Deneuve, cast here as the naïve princess of a kingdom where the horses’ fur has been dyed deep blue, to match the clothing of the court, and where the king’s magical donkey shits gold coins. Given the title, it’s no spoiler to disclose that the donkey meets an unfortunate fate, though this particular plot point has only passing significance.

In Donkey Skin, Demy leans heavily into the most twisted aspects of Charles Perrault’s source material. On the queen’s deathbed, the king promises that he will only remarry when he finds a woman who is her equal in beauty and grace. After searching high and low, the king eventually discovers that what he’s looking for has been right under his nose all along—after all, his daughter looks exactly like a 27 year-old Catherine Deneuve—and so he proposes marriage to the princess. Far from repulsed, the princess appears rather interested in the possibility of this incestuous coupling (after all, she does love her father!). But her fairy godmother (a delightfully modern Delphine Seyrig) discourages her from accepting, more, we come to learn, because of her own jealousy—she clearly has a thing for the king—than out of a sense of propriety.

Remarkably, the film never actually diffuses the possibility of incest that it raises. Instead, Deneuve’s princess flees the kingdom, concealed beneath a magical donkey skin (a great disguise, apparently, and also, yuck). While slumming as a scullery maid, she manages to win the affections of Jacques Perrin’s handsome young prince, which resolves everything. Except it doesn’t. And that’s the point.

The glories of Donkey Skin 11选5必中一个号lie in the ruptures between the irresolvable conflicts brought on by inappropriate desire and the raptures of costume and production design, lighting and camera placement, melody and voice. To see Deneuve decked out in gowns meant to evoke the weather, the moon, and the sun brings pure, unbridled pleasure; never mind that the dresses are commissioned in an elaborate scheme to delay an impossible marriage. The musical number in which the princess bakes the young prince a love cake, singing the recipe step by step, is such an unmitigated delight that I nearly forgot, as Deneuve massaged the dough, that I was living through a pandemic. This is the transcendence the genre offers in the hands of a master.

Then, when it all came flooding back to me, I was struck with a perverse notion of my own: what about a quarantine Donkey Skin 11选5必中一个号baking challenge, with cinephiles coast to coast attempting their own version of the princess’s love cake? What do you say, Farihah; are you game? —Chris Wisniewski

I’m afraid I’m not much of a baker due to a preference for the salty/crunchy side of the taste spectrum and a persistent lack of ability (or is it desire?) to follow a recipe exactly. As much as I had hoped that quarantine might change this about me, it seems I only fuck with flour if it’s going into a batter or destined to be laboriously stuffed like a samosa or a dumpling. However if the city of New York is in need of a judge for this challenge, someone with the fortitude to receive platters and platters of love cakes from amateur cinephile bakers, safely, upon their Brooklyn stoops, you know I will step up and do my duty.

It’s true that musicals can be an escapist balm during troubled times, but during the particulars of necessary social distancing, they also intensify a longing for communal experience that includes touch. Two weekends in a row (one of them spent recovering from what was likely a mercifully mild bout of COVID), I have also instinctively turned to a musical for comfort and also, coincidentally, began with a classic (Stanley Donen and forever heartthrob Gene Kelly’s Singin in the Rain) followed by a darker, yet equally frothy 1970s take on the genre: Thank God Its Friday, the directorial debut of Robert Klane, who scripted both Weekend at Bernies11选5必中一个号 and its sequel. These films now feel like tributes to the luxury of casual contact.

Thank God Its Friday involves the kind of one-crazy-night set up that has always fascinated me; in the same way that the visual medium can be bent and manipulated to convincingly convey the pleasures of other senses—scent, taste, the aforementioned touch—I consider it an act of wizardry that with the right lensing and editing cinema can envelop you in a gathering. Unlike films with a similarly wide cast of characters and loping vignette structure that culminate in a party scene (Dazed and Confused, say, or Booksmart), Thank God Its Friday11选5必中一个号 never even leaves the club. For the record, that club is named Zoo.

This borderline plotless film is born in a DJ booth, lives on the dance floor and dies, elated, on the neon-washed parking lot pavement at Zoo, the kind of space where people specifically come together, consciously or otherwise, in order to become one heaving organism, to breathe together, sweat together, dance together, synced to the same rhythm; of course the film is saturated by physical contact. But do not all musicals, from Meet Me in St. Louis to the video for Bjork’s “It’s Oh So Quiet,” flirt with this sacred evocation, try to recreate the sense that anything can happen, that any externalization of an emotional state can take physical form, can bring the porous boundaries of the dance floor to moments of everyday life? Turn to your left and there is a dance partner, ready to take your hand and lift you up.

Speaking of nostalgia, I was also tickled by this Wikipedia entry on the concept embodied by the title of the film; by the subtle, equalizing shift in cultural perspective that highlights the strange and sometimes myopically privileged genesis of our idioms, but especially by the idea that Friday is not just a day of the week but a state of mind: “Thank God It's Friday is a common expression in English-speaking Western countries. It expresses gratification that the working week is nearly over, and a weekend of leisure will soon be here.

So often in the past weeks I’ve grimly joked to myself (I am my own quarantine bae), à la Maggie Smith’s Dowager Countess of Grantham, “What is 11选5必中一个号a weekend?” As the days blur maddeningly together, the idea of ritual and celebration feels increasingly crucial in delineating the passage and bolstering the meaning of time, of which moments we feel allowed to give ourselves respite, to shore up those lucky enough to have such a thing, and to honor those who do not. Welcoming the weekend, whatever that is, with a Friday night musical feels like an appropriate tradition.

Regarding the cameo of one Ms. Donna Summer…like any great, intangible party peak, you had to be there (and still can, via the magic of streaming!), but I will11选5必中一个号 say that the moment my bangs grow out and it becomes ethically reasonable to let another human near my face, I will be asking for her hair, iconic, Billie Holiday-esque tucked hibiscus flower and all. —Farihah Zaman

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28张牌梭哈技巧Notes from the Village Square http://gybsgdx.cn/archive/entry/2660/village_square_our_house http://gybsgdx.cn/archive/entry/2660/village_square_our_house feature Fri, 10 Apr 2020 00:00:00 -0400 Nicholas Russell Our House Notes from the Village Square
11选5必中一个号 By Nicholas Russell

11选5必中一个号 So many of our beloved public spaces are self-segregating by nature. They carry with them a charge of unexamined history that continues to be pushed further and further into the past. The utility of these spaces, and the price at which their resources are attainable, also dictates who comes to them. Often, I marvel at the lack of utility when it comes to the movie theater. There is entertainment, sure, but also distraction. The hope for distraction, at least. Some people pay to sit quietly in a dark room, interested more in killing time than watching what unfolds in front of them.

The composition of a theater’s audience influences our anticipation for what’s about to play on-screen—a string of children turning the corner can elicit preemptive groans; bodies shy away from contact when a stranger has no choice but to sit next to another stranger; a black couple draws the most fervent amount of scrutiny (or pointed lack thereof) while walking by. It’s a house that’s constantly divvied up and claimed. Silence must fall when the lights go out.

*****

Entangled with the repulsion that comes culturally ingrained in racists and bigots is a simultaneous fascination with the people they claim to despise. You have to get close to get granular about what you hate. I think about this as a white stranger follows me while I'm walking out of a movie at Village Square, a local Regal cinema in the suburbs of my hometown of Las Vegas. The dusty wine-red carpet beneath our feet sucks up any sound, overhead lights passing in sporadic flashes that throw shadows below our noses, eye sockets. Darkness as we walk between each light. My skin looks yellow when I reemerge from under each new illumination.

Over time, it’s become clear to me that white people don’t understand the extent to which their movements and actions are taken into account by black people and people of color who are nearby. I know that this person walking behind me is parked in the opposite direction from where I’m going, towards the building’s main entrance. I know that when I sat down in the very last row of theater 8, this person openly stared at me while selecting a seat several spaces away, same row. After I stayed through the credits and the cleaning crew began to ignore the two of us in earnest, I knew this person was here for me alone, waiting to see what I would do.

11选5必中一个号 The back doors that lead to the rear parking lot draw closer ahead of us. Through the years, theater management has put up and taken down signs warning that opening these doors will trigger emergency alarms. My mother and I and every employee who takes a smoke break out back knows this isn’t true. I stop within arms length of the latched bars and turn around. It’s a man following me, which, in my experience, happens most often. His head is down until he notices me noticing him, tripping on his toe as he pauses in the darkness where there are no lights to show our faces.

I keep telling myself in these situations that I am not scared, that the onus is on the other person willing me to say the first word or take the first step. But there is barely a moment between us. His silhouette undulates as he puts his hands in his jacket pockets and turns back toward the theater we came from, toward the car he seemed ready to abandon, toward the light where his face will be seen by anyone in front of him, except me.

*****

11选5必中一个号 For most of my life, the Regal-owned multiplex at Village Square has been a house for me. It is one of the few movie theaters in Vegas that isn’t located within a casino. It stands far beyond the reach of the Strip, in an affluent area of the suburbs dense with people who think they are enjoying an ordinary, vice-free life. It is one of few movie theaters that hasn’t yet upgraded its seats to the kind with turbines that whir and faux leather cushions that squeak. When you wanted to catch up on what was out for cheap, you went here.

The atrium inside leads to a wide concession stand and, on either side, the entrances to the theaters, 1-10 on the left and 11-18 on the right. A continuous hallway connects all 18 theaters and, if you’re careful, you can hop between showings with little effort, as long as you aren’t the only person seated. Even then, sometimes it doesn’t matter. In January 2009, I saw Slumdog Millionaire, the first Twilight movie, and The Curious Case of Benjamin Button all in the same day, hiding in the bathroom at the start of each film while theater employees did their headcounts.

There are gradual realizations that come with growing up in a city everyone outside it thinks they understand. I imagine it must be constantly surprising for a tourist visiting Las Vegas for the first time; the mundane becomes quaint. Oh, you have neighborhoods and cars and schools and libraries here, evidence of life beyond what happens in the liminal spaces that are designed to steer your focus to the present and nothing after. It was stupid when I was little and it is stupid now to think that anyone would believe we live in hotels, but it is a steadfast stereotype that somehow manages to prevail.

11选5必中一个号 What I mean to say is that Village Square rarely sees tourists, that if you were to sit in one of its seats, there would be nothing obviously special about it. Just another theater, a place for diversion, contemplation, and conspicuous consumption. But what does make the place at all worth talking about is more about how this theater in particular reflects the community it serves.

11选5必中一个号 It’s where the creationist documentaries and Christian anti-abortion movies get sold out. It’s where anyone with large pockets or a visibly stiff arm gets checked to see if they’re smuggling in candy from the Rocket Fizz next door. It’s where the lolos and lolas go after grabbing fried chicken at Jollibee to watch some of the only films in town that come from the Philippines. It’s where the geriatrics go to see foreign films they shake their heads at after the lights come back up.

It’s where you go to watch a movie, and it's where everyone around is likely also watching you, lest you think that being black and alone in a public space has finally become unremarkable.

*****

Like most public spaces in the United States, movie theaters are, by law, desegregated. Under this idealized mandate, there is room for sanitized diversity at the same time that there is the hope that we all generally experience the same things without much variation. This communicates nothing about what it’s like to, say, watch The Hurt Locker in a theater full of white men and women stitched with American flags in their skin or on their clothes who stare at you as you find an open seat. There is ownership, always, for the pieces of art that move us, that loom large in our memories. For many white people, that sense of ownership might come simply from being familiar with a well-known thing made by others like them. A film starring famous white actors is usually among these objects, as is the space in which the film is shown.

The night Village Square hosted a screening of Rear Window11选5必中一个号, it was clear that much of the white audience in attendance hadn’t actually seen the movie. A classic to be sure, but one that existed as more a collective memory for an experience they might never have had. So when the theater filled, anticipation in the air grew. It was no small thing to be in an audience so fully captivated by what was onscreen that no one got up to go to the bathroom. That’s a testament to a film that’s aged well.

However, it was also no small thing to know where Rear Window stands in an American history often elided in favor of nostalgia. The second of Alfred Hitchcock’s four collaborations with star James Stewart, as well as the second of three with Grace Kelly, Rear Window11选5必中一个号 was released in 1954 when segregation was still a norm of daily life. Many theaters were vertically segregated, with the colored section on the balcony above the whites-only section. There are apocryphal stories of black patrons hurling popcorn and shoes and spit onto captive crowds of white audience members below. But, as UC Berkeley Professor Elizabeth Abel notes in her essay “Double Take: Photography, Cinema, and the Segregated Theater,” “the silence of white audiences on the subject suggests that the popcorn may have traced an imaginary arc more often than a real one.”

Those who lived through Jim Crow and the long era of segregation remember the colored balcony well. “When I was a child living in Van Buren, Arkansas, the only theater that we could attend, we had to go up a real steep stairs,” said Dr. Mamie Clayton, founder of the Black American Cinema Society, in an interview with NPR. “And then you open up a little door for the black people, and you go into the theater.” There was the clicking of the projector just behind their heads, sometimes a knowing glance at the black man working inside the booth. It’s interesting to note that many black elders have said that the vantage point on the balcony was superior to that of the seats on the ground floor. “Yes, we as African Americans had to go up in the balcony to watch the movie, but that was the best place to view a movie,” said Roosevelt Rick Wright, Jr., professor of film and television at Syracuse University. Often, the screen and projector were at eye level and the railing along the balcony’s rim presented a chance to prop your feet up. “And then, of course, you're near the projection booth, and then you've got the ambience of the projection machine, and that light coming through those portholes. I mean, that's magical.”

For these reasons, I imagine Village Square would have been an uncomfortably democratized theater for most anyone involved to visit if it had been around during segregation. There are no balconies, no steep stairs leading to seats significantly higher than others. Each row of red velvet slopes gently up at an incline so slight you could scarcely roll down it if you were on wheels.

So on the night that they played Rear Window, more than 50 years since its original release within the purview of segregation, the audience was open to choose any seat, no section off limits. But this was a white movie populated by white faces, and I was the only person of color there. Even in the 1950s, black people were going to see what was on offer to a “general public” that wasn’t even aware there was such a thing as a black-led film. As with nearly all the Hollywood films we regularly call classics, the jokes and references in Rear Window all point to a sanctified and hermetic society made nearly impossible to reach if you weren’t white.

At one point in the film, Stella (Thelma Ritter), the nurse sent by the insurance company to look after L.B. Jefferies (James Stewart) following an accident that leaves him languishing in a wheelchair, muses on the possibility that L.B.’s neighbor has murdered his own wife. It’s one of my favorite lines in the film. “Mr. Thorwald could scarcely put his wife’s body in a plot of ground about one foot square. Unless, of course, he put her in standing on end, and then he wouldn’t need a knife and saw.” I had seen the film so many times that I silently mouthed the words to myself as Thelma Ritter said them onscreen. Next to me, an elderly white woman turned her head and raised a stern finger to her pursed lips.

*****

Returning to my car’s driver’s seat, I lock the doors like most white women tend to do if I walk within 20 feet of them. I fish out the ticket stub from my pants pocket and slide it into my wallet.

I started collecting stubs in earnest in 2009, which is why I’m able to say which films I saw and when. There are over 70 saved tickets from Village Square crammed inside a square metal box resting on my bookshelf, though I know this is an incomplete number and a truncated span of time. I’ve been coming here as long as I can remember, and certain movies stick out in my memory better than others. I remember seeing Terrence Malick’s The Tree of Life, remember my mom leaning over halfway through to tell me that she’d be waiting outside until it was over. I remember a drizzly day crammed with five people in my friend’s truck after The Perks of Being a Wallflower and thinking that, apart from a pretty great soundtrack, I would have to feign recognition with a movie I couldn’t relate to. I remember seeing Get Out on the Thursday night that it opened, peeking into an adjacent theater full of people, not one seat empty, as a “science enthusiast” in a Christian documentary about the evidence of God’s creation explained why the existence of the Grand Canyon proved the Earth was only several thousand years old. In the theater for Get Out, there were fewer than ten of us.

I think about all the movies I’ve seen where Vegas appears as a location, where the audience will either cheer or boo depending on how favorably and stereotypically we see the same mile-and-a-half patch of the Strip depicted time and time again. I think about every time I’ve been asked to explain what a movie starring a predominantly non-white cast means to someone who didn’t understand it. I think about all the intrusions that have come through those screens, the challenges and provocations that make white people shift uncomfortably in their seats when all they wanted was to laugh or cry then leave feeling they had gotten their money’s worth.

*****

The ticket in my hand says ‘Hidden,’ showing at 4:00 p.m. It takes me a moment to realize the movie was Hidden Figures.11选5必中一个号 It’s a film that proved enjoyable, mostly because I found myself laughing at how earnest it was in its cartoonish depictions of racism and small triumphs in the face of it. At one point, Kevin Costner smashes down a Coloreds Only bathroom sign at NASA, the audience erupting in applause.

I took off my glasses as the scene unfolded and wiped the lenses with the hem of my shirt. In my periphery, I could see the white stranger looking at me. Maybe it was then that he took an interest, when he decided he had to inspect what he read as aberrant behavior by following a stranger down darkened halls. I’m not sure. In the weeks and months following, when I return and return, I keep an eye out for people like him.

It is not a double standard to say that, despite the pronounced and persistent othering I have experienced in movie theaters and other public spaces, I do miss going to the movies terribly. In the same way, criticism does not exist to occupy a binary of celebration or condemnation. In the weeks since COVID-19 has forced us to stay in our homes and away from each other, the conversations surrounding the future of movie theaters and the film industry at large have dipped toward the dour and pessimistic, and I am inclined to agree with many of these diagnoses, though there has been an ironic bright side. The way has been paved for a plurality of marginalized voices to be heard, not just in the context of the current situation, but in the context of the normal day-to-day before disaster struck. Films that were once difficult to access have either been made available to stream or are at least easier to obtain. I believe there will be a period “after this is all over,” where my fellow critics and moviegoers will breathe a sigh of relief thankful that the fatal blow to our beloved industry, at least in terms of dedicated brick-and-mortar movie houses, did not come. I believe that there will be a swift return to the status quo, but I don’t just mean big blockbusters, controversial sleeper hits, contested instant classics, and the festivals that spawn noteworthy works of art. As critic Kelley Dong astutely points out, “What is missing are polemics that seize upon a most opportune time for overhaul.”

I hope we reify our love for the movies and demonstrate that passion by putting our money in the hands of independent cinemas and filmmakers. I also hope we question, as Dong does, “Why, for instance, is public access to films screened at festivals—from avant-garde shorts to restorations and features—only now a priority, now that the threat of death is imminent to those who might never afford to attend a film festival in their lives?” Access is not simply about being let in the door, but also having the privilege of knowing what there is available to see. Mutual and collective discovery, rapture, and broadening of the ongoing cinematic conversation—in my eyes, that’s what makes movies worth seeking out and what makes the theater experience special.

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11选5彩票推荐号码预测First Look 2020: The Viewing Booth http://gybsgdx.cn/archive/entry/2659/viewing_booth_first_look http://gybsgdx.cn/archive/entry/2659/viewing_booth_first_look feature Tue, 07 Apr 2020 00:00:00 -0400 Daniel Witkin At the Museum Sensitivity Training
A Conversation with The Viewing Booth director Ra’anan Alexandrowicz and Daniel Witkin

I met Ra’anan Alexandrowicz in preparation for this article at the Museum of the Moving Image in Astoria on the first day of First Look 2020, the festival in which Ra’anan’s film The Viewing Booth 11选5必中一个号was to have its New York premiere before the festival’s unfortunate cancellation due to COVID-19. After a protracted period of emailing and planning alongside our own virus preparations, Alexandrowicz and I were at last able to connect roughly a week and a half later over the suddenly ubiquitous Zoom and get into many of the ideas raised by his film that we had wanted to explore in person.

The Viewing Booth of the title refers to an apparatus invented by Alexandrowicz that operates like an updated version of Errol Morris’s interrotron, specifically oriented towards the film’s self-reflexive ends. In short, it positions a camera opposite a viewer, who watches videos that are both emotionally and politically charged, in this case footage of the Israeli occupation of Palestine, as presented both by the activist group B’Tselem as well as by various nationalistic and right wing organs. While the film emerged out of a series of experiments with a variety of viewers, it ultimately hones in on the viewing experience of a single participant: a young woman named Maia, who views them from an unambiguously Zionist perspective, but who nonetheless is willing to engage with the videos at length in essentially good faith. As Maia’s commentary becomes more complex, the film becomes a document of what Alexandrowicz calls, “a breakdown of communication that becomes a dialogue in its own right.” Revealing and instructive to anyone with an interest in how images interact with their world, the film provides cause for both optimism and pessimism, but ultimately leaves space for viewers to come to their own conclusions.

DW: I’d like to start more or less where we left off in Queens, which is how The Viewing Booth came out of a period of uncertainty for you.

RA: My experiences with other projects, mainly the films The Inner Tour and The Law in These Parts, brought me to The Viewing Booth. It was the dichotomy between making films that, on one hand, are meant to have some kind of influence on how people think about certain issues and, on the other, the reality that’s outside the film. Popping out of my little bubble, I have to admit that things seem to be not very influenced by the work that I do, as well as that of other, better filmmakers than myself. This dichotomy brought me to ask myself: What is the role of the work that I’m doing, and what is the role of the nonfiction image?

My first approach was to try to look at this by way of research: I took a certain subject that I am very invested in, which is Palestine, and I looked at the way it was documented over time. I wanted to look at it not by going through it media object by media object, but rather to try to assess the big picture—to ask myself, what is the relationship between the ongoing occupation, and the ongoing documentation of it? Some of these thoughts are written in my essay “50 Years of Documentation.” Discovering how much critical documentation of the occupation existed from very early on led me to the understanding that to try to approach this question I shouldn’t necessarily be looking only at the media or the makers of it, but rather at the eyes that see that media.

DW: You’ve said that you saw Maia as kind of an ideal viewer? Obviously, she wasn’t going to constitute “preaching to the choir.” But were there other characteristics that made her particularly well suited to the role?

11选5必中一个号 RA: I should say that I don’t think that changing people’s minds is the sole purpose of documentary cinema. It is something that many of us are trying to achieve, but other people have very different goals, which are valid. And yes, Maia is definitely not in the choir. She thinks very differently from me with regards to the political situation in Israel, and the meaning of these images. But it was more than that. I found her to be a very curious and open-eyed viewer. She is not turning away from things that are difficult for her to watch. She may be somehow transforming them, which I try to document in the film, but she is actually looking, and she’s willing to be self-reflective about how she’s looking. So in a way Maia is my “ideal” or “preferred” viewer not only because she sees things differently from me, but also because she’s very good about seeing. So if I, as a maker of images, can’t reach her, whom can I reach?

DW: I’m interested in exploring this idea of being “good at seeing.” When we were talking back at the festival, you were clear that this is not a film about the occupation. So one thing that it does end up being about is this idea of seeing, and the possibility that one can be too sophisticated as a viewer. That if you bring so much extra-textual awareness, you can miss the thing that you think you’re seeing. Or perhaps you end up analyzing or editorializing about something instead of simply seeing it.

11选5必中一个号 RA: I agree with that. Though one of the things that’s special about Maia is that because of her authenticity, I—and other people who watch the film—can see ourselves in her. Through experiencing her seeing the images in a way we do not agree with, we are able to imagine how we view images that maybe don’t accord with the way we see the world.

Going back to being “too sophisticated as a viewer” as you put it, I do think that critical viewing, which is something that I strongly support, can also kill something in the basic disposition of seeing, and I don’t think it only happens on one side of the political divide. One of the things I learned through making the film is that viewing is behavior. It’s internal, but we are behaving towards images in the same way that we can behave towards a person. Some viewers of The Viewing Booth11选5必中一个号 are behaving towards Maia the same way that Maia behaved towards the images in the film. They dismiss her as a point of reference for them, because she “doesn’t know enough about this” or that she is “a lost cause.” I can’t help asking if what is going on is that these people are dismissive of Maia herself as a way of coming to terms with what’s reflected through her.

DW: One thing that we’ve been implicitly discussing without mentioning outright is what you might call partisanship, which can have a specific meaning in the U.S. context, but which we might think of as a basic conflation of one’s political beliefs and one’s identity. I don’t think that it’s inherently a disqualifying vice or limited to one side of political spectrum. You and I probably have a sort of partisanship of our own—we’re both on the left and against the occupation, broadly speaking. But I’d like to ask if you see The Viewing Booth as a partisan film.

RA: That’s a question that speaks to some of my basic dilemmas in making the film. This is actually the first film that I’m not addressing at the people “beyond the choir” in order to contribute to an effort to change their minds. I actually don’t know what to expect from people from the other side” of the political divide with this film and how they would see it. For instance, I’m not sure what people who are pro-occupation will do with this film, if they even watch it. I am very much looking forward to the engagement of people who are like-minded politically as well as people who believe, like I do, that by showing things about the world, we can make it a better place; in other words, the nonfiction community in the broadest possible definition.

As I mentioned before, these images are very important to me, and not only to me. They document a reality that is ongoing and unacceptable. But here is the dilemma: I actually made a film about these images without providing my way of reading them, which I really think is the right way. This was very unsettling for me throughout the process. I asked myself whether I was betraying the images—and betraying the people who made them—by making a film where the main participant gets a platform to discredit the images. Moreover, I mostly don’t push back against this discrediting. But for ethical and political reasons, I understood that if I wanted to portray Maia’s viewing, my job was to be pretty silent and to facilitate the understanding of that point of view.

In later stages of post-production, I showed the film to the Palestinians who had actually filmed the videos. I admit that I was very worried about this meeting, for the reasons I mentioned. The outcome surprised me. All of Maia’s arguments against the images they already know. They’re being asked every day: Why are you here with a camera? Did you fake this video? This wasn’t new to them. What was new was seeing the eyes looking at it, and to perceive that she’s in a kind of turmoil because of the images that they created. So, funnily enough, they said that they feel very optimistic about her. They felt that the images would still change her.

DW: In a way very much unlike Maia’s, I can also feel a sort of resistance to this kind of video. In general, I don’t like to watch videos that show somebody being killed. When I think about why that is, I don’t think that I have a particularly good or articulate answer beyond the sort of psychological self-preservation you describe as well as a sort of more philosophic discomfort. I think that a lot of the social value of these videos has to do with providing empirical evidence of oppression. There are enough people in the world who believe that the Israeli army or American police force would never do the things they’re accused of, that we need the videos to show a critical mass of people that, yes, these things really do happen. The issue is that I already am convinced, and I’m less sure of the effect these videos have on you when you already believe these things.

11选5必中一个号 RA: All of that is true, but I would say that you’re leaving out one important thing, which is the act of witnessing. The choice to watch is the choice to bear witness. The main excuse that I—and many people, I think—use for not watching is to say to myself: “I know that this stuff happens, and I acknowledge that it is wrong, so I don’t need to see it.” The answer would be that to see something you don’t want to see would probably give you a little more understanding of just how terrible these things are—these things that you don’t even want to look at from a distance. If the person filming it is enduring it, then the least we can do is to hold our eyes against it and suffer with it.

11选5必中一个号 But there’s always a counterargument, because what is witnessing? What does it mean to witness hunger in our living room? To paraphrase Sontag, the “pain of others” has never been as visible to so many as it is now; and at the same time, some ideas of human equality and solidarity are being rolled back. Even if you come to these images with the best of intentions, there might be an effect of desensitization; you might find yourself being voyeuristic. One reason that people avoid videos of death is the same reason that other people choose to watch them: because it’s a chance to witness death from a safe space. So the contradictions are very interwoven with one another. So I’m like you: I didn’t really want to be a part of this by seeing it. But at the same time I never thought it was a moral position; it was a selfish position.

I recently encountered an excerpt from an interview with an Israeli bulldozer driver that I had read in 2002. The guy had given a candid, horrifying interview in which he bragged about his part in destroying the Jenin refugee camp. Reading this short excerpt I remembered the visceral effect that the full interview had had on me 18 years ago. That text had shocked me in the deepest way. The memory of that sensation, which was provoked by reading the short excerpt was a reminder that I’m not as affected even by graphic depictions of these things today as I was reading about them a couple of decades ago. Every day one is less sensitive than one was yesterday, and you can’t track it until you have a memory of how you used to respond.

DW: I think that in a lot of ways, we’ve been creeping back towards what you might call barbarism. There’s a rising level of acceptance of things that ought to be unacceptable. For instance, in the 19th century, you’d have a pogrom in Kishinev, and the deaths of 50 people would be a global scandal. Or you’d have the Dreyfus affair, where just one man is wrongfully accused, and it becomes a matter for the entire world. And steadily, I think in large part because of the world wars and other political changes, the basic idea of what is tolerable has quietly degenerated. I don’t think that you can blame the images; although I do wonder what role some kind of mass desensitization may have played. As we enter the new Coronavirus reality, you begin to wonder what we are willing to consider “normal.” If 100,000 people die, is that normal? If a million die, can we consider our lives normal then?

11选5必中一个号 RA: And of course that depends on which 100,000 people we are talking about, are they in Yemen or in New York?

DW: Exactly. And then the question is, does this reservoir of information and media play a role in reinforcing that reality?

RA: For that I’d like to go back to my experience with these videos. Because I’ve been witness to the moment when the people who used to be the subject of documentary films became the people doing the documenting. I write about this moment in the context of the Israeli Occupation in “50 Years of Documentation.” I am talking about the 2000s, when small cameras became widespread amongst the Palestinians living under occupation and videos like the “Sharmuta” video that appears in The Viewing Booth started appearing online. When I saw these images, and the reach that they had, I thought, there’s suddenly going to be access to so much raw truth about what is going on, and how can the other side defeat that? I remember another reflection on this question, about a decade later. In 2015 there was another Palestinian wave of uprising, which entailed attacks against Israeli soldiers and civilians by use of vehicles and by use of knives. By that time there is always a phone or a camera turned on, so there were all these images of these attacks, and the subsequent killing of the perpetrator. And watching this wave of videos, I felt that I was getting the answer to that earlier question, and it was a heavy one. What was going to defeat these images of truth, I realized, was only more and more images. This is not a new idea of course, but this is the way I experienced this understanding. One hundred and fifty years ago, one image of suffering could fill the consciousness of humanity for a moment, and now we are in a fragmented world, where everyone is watching different images, and everything is relativized in a way that makes it smaller.

DW: Your saying that makes me realize what I think is behind a lot of my skepticism here. The most influential videos in my country in my lifetime would probably be the footage of the 9/11 attacks. I remember that my parents didn’t want me to see the videos, but they couldn’t prevent this because the images were everywhere—it was the ultimate spectacle for fin-de-siècle America. And you couldn’t see the effect that all this was having at first, but as we got further into the decade you saw that these images created a sort of invisible trauma, which I don’t think that people really understood was there. But you would see it in the way that Americans would talk about Muslims, and in the way that many people allowed themselves to be duped into this war that everyone knew was at least somewhat based on a lie, perhaps because they wanted to achieve a certain affective payoff. I think that, even if you’re not aware of it, this critical mass of violent images can still affect you in ways that make you less humane or less reasonable. Now, I don’t think that’s the case with the B’Tselem videos in your film. But one of the things that does make me pessimistic is that while images can genuinely challenge partisanship—which you do show in the film—I wonder if having so much of that kind of imagery as a part of the ambient environment will always ultimately redoubt to the benefit of that innate partisanship and to the people who are best positioned and most willing to exploit it.

11选5必中一个号 RA: I really agree with that. And I think that in a way it’s a more articulate way to put that experiential thing that I was saying before. The question is to what extent that environment of media that we live in ends up destroying its own significance. From a place of self-preservation I totally agree with you. There is an effect that’s hard to put one’s finger on. Images are changing mankind, and the extreme visual exposure to images that allow us to witness “the pain of others” is changing what humanism is.

The Viewing Booth was originally scheduled to screen as part of Museum of the Moving Image’s

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0500采Connected: The Chronicle of Anna Magdalena Bach/<br>Original Cast Album: Co-op http://gybsgdx.cn/archive/entry/2658/connected_doc_now_bach http://gybsgdx.cn/archive/entry/2658/connected_doc_now_bach feature Mon, 06 Apr 2020 00:00:00 -0400 Julien Allen, Adam Nayman Connected In this new weekly column, Connected, one writer will send another a new piece of writing about a film they have been watching and pondering over, in the hopes that this will prompt a connection—emotional, thematic, historical, or analytical—to a different film the other has been watching or is inspired to rewatch. This ongoing column will be in the spirit of many past Reverse Shot symposiums, in which writers found connections between seemingly disparate cinematic works, and it will also help us maintain personal connection among our writers and our readers at this uncertain moment.

The Chronicle of Anna Magdalena Bach
Here’s a connection. The default question I am asked by fellow film lovers during the lockdown is: “What are you watching?” My questioners have all manner of prepared answers to this: a film randomizer, iffy horror sequels, Cary Grant pictures. To my shame, I have none. Until a few days ago, the closest I got to watching a film in its entirety since the unpleasantness began was Chaplin’s The Gold Rush11选5必中一个号, aborted at the first sight of Georgia Hale because I wasn’t ready to suffer.

Why am I having so much trouble letting film back into my life at a time when it should be the greatest redeemer? Am I a bad cinephile? Perhaps the directness and objectivity of cinema—its ever-opening window onto the real world, so vital to me in peacetime—is too much now. Cinema carries a deep connection to the recent past (before the unpleasantness), which disconcerts. I need something to have changed: a more abstract, ethereal experience that will leave me alone with my own thoughts and not those of others. Music provides this in spades, with J S Bach foremost. The cantatas, masses, concertos, oratorios; the organ toccatas, motets . . . the Passions. Bach’s incorruptibility and rigor, producing something so infinitely sublime and personal from something so geometric, is what I crave.

There are plenty of ways back into cinema by this route. Bergman, for one. Or Malick. (So many recent releases dissolve in the mind now when compared to his A Hidden Life, and not just for his lacerating use of Dvořák and Handel). One film, though, imposes itself: Jean-Marie Straub and Danièle Huillet’s 1968 The Chronicle of Anna Magdalena Bach, which records not only the inalienable splendor of Bach throughout but also presents an awesome cinematic singularity. It is—as far as I can tell—the only concert film ever made outside of the documentary format. For while each performance is recorded in a single take and unaltered, with numerous imprecisions and flaws left in, performers in period costume take the roles of Bach, his wife and his performers at Leipzig. Despite the efforts of many artists and historians, there is no actual “chronicle of Anna Magdalena Bach,” as almost none of her words survive. The diary entries that narrate the action are invented by Straub and Huillet, compiled from snippets of the contemporary here and there.

11选5必中一个号 This film arrests and purifies by its refusal to add anything textural to the music itself: the camera is static, the actors expressionless. Narration by Anna Magdalena (Christiane Lang) describes the end of Bach’s life and lapse into financial hardship and blindness. Occasional meditative tableaux of nature—Straub’s response to Griffith’s complaint that modern films lack “the beauty of the wind in the trees”—punctuate the pieces, but the breath of life comes from the music itself. Beyond a desire to depict harmonic purity (to make a film “of” Bach’s music rather than “about” it), a second preoccupation of Straub’s emerges: his philosophy of acting, applied to professional musicians recast as actors. (Straub was the more vocal and public of the two figures and concentrated primarily on direction and image, while Huillet co-wrote, managed the production design, and ruled the editing suite).

The Dutchman Gustav Leonhart was a harpsichordist of renown and a scholar, responsible for colossal strides in the use of period instruments in modern repertoire. He bore no physical resemblance to Bach but was cast for his interiority and prowess at the keyboard. During an early rehearsal of his performance of the “Italian Concerto in F Major,” Straub interrupted a bewigged Leonhart mid-flow with one of the most baffling notes that can ever have been given to a lead actor in the history of motion pictures: “You’re trying to be too naturalistic!” Leonhart had sensibly imagined how Bach would have felt when performing his concerto for the first time, but Straub was having none of this. He wanted Leonhart to concentrate on his own performance of the piece. He needed to capture that fear, which could only ultimately come from the camera rolling and the knowledge that there was only one take. In that sense, The Chronicle of Anna Magdalena Bach 11选5必中一个号is a documentary—about performance—an extreme statement of the views of Renoir and Pialat, who believed all films were documentaries about the processes of their own making.

Victor Hugo observed: “Music expresses that which cannot be put into words and that which cannot remain silent.” This film reflects, passionately and even somewhat aggressively, Bach’s artistic force. Nothing verbal or aesthetic therein is expressed with the slightest emotion—even the musical performances are resolutely straightforward—because everything is contained in the music and thereby in us. By connecting to nothing, this music connects everyone and everything. —Julien Allen

“Original Cast Album: Co-op” (Documentary Now!)

Hi Julien! One thing I was most struck by in your essay, which is not to discount your characteristically articulate and concise accounting of The Chronicle of Anna Magdalena Bach, a film I treasure above the rest of its co-authors’ forbidding corpus, is the idea of being a “bad cinephile.” Of all the things demanding reflection and/or action in a moment of constant, ambient stress—and, for many, a grueling but necessary form of compartmentalization between necessity and pleasure—worrying about maintaining some sort of high level of home viewership, whether privately or performatively (on Letterboxd, or Twitter, or wherever) seems absurd.

Except, of course, that it isn’t. As I happen to believe that we are who we are regardless of the surrounding context, and also that extreme situations of all kinds tend to deepen rather than diversify patterns of thought and behavior, it’s not surprising that I’ve also been consumed of late by questions of what to watch, and why, and when. (As your kids are all considerably older and more self-sufficient than mine, I’m going to assume that “when” is a less pressing issue for you than it is for me, though I hope everybody is either sharing the family television or making do with laptops; for the twelve hours between Lea’s breakfast and bedtime, our living room set is either turned off or streaming Shaun the Sheep.) But where you describe being drawn to a work of extreme rigor—a film that commands and demands total attention, including and especially in musical sequences that are, as you say, eloquent despite their lack of language—I have found that, work assignments notwithstanding, I’ve been drawn toward things that make me laugh—i.e. the same kind of casual, immediately rewarding late-evening viewing I favored before the imposition (here, there, and everywhere) of lockdown.

I mean, I could try to draw a tortuous analogy between The Chronicle of Anna Magdalena Bach, a hybridized biopic-slash-performance piece that doubles, as you describe, as a documentary of its actors, and the meticulous, methodical period and textural re-creations of Documentary Now’s season three episode “Co-op: Original Cast Recording,” which spoofs D.A. Pennebaker’s 1970 vérité classic Original Cast Album: Company—11选5必中一个号itself a fly-on-the-wall observation of the recording of the soundtrack to Stephen Sondheim’s landmark Broadway musical. I could, but I won’t, because not even the psychic trauma of a global pandemic justifies that degree of kamikaze interpretive leap.

Instead, I’ll pick up your final thread about music connecting everything and say that while luxuriating in the Documentary Now team’s typically expert and excellent formal and tonal parody—an affectionate yet straight-faced form of re-creation made even more amazing in this episode by the authentically Sondheim-ian songs penned by Eli Bolin, Seth Meyers, and John Mulaney (who also appears onscreen as a thinly veiled, sleekly turtle-necked version of the maestro)—I found myself moved by Renée Elise Goldsberry’s rendition of the (intentionally) ridiculous songwhich begins with a series of strained tennis metaphors before transitioning into a hymn to tacky seventies interior design (“the brown and the beige and the brown and the beige”). Not moved by the song itself, which is, as mentioned earlier, utterly silly and eerily on-point as a satire of Sondheim’s slyly staccato rhyme schemes, but by the sheer exuberance of Goldsberry’s singing and performance, which exists at the same high level as her Tony Award–winning work in Hamilton. Her brilliance contradicts the short’s narrative conceit that the apartment-themed musical “Co-op” is a helpless, abject flop while consolidating its larger point: that musical theater has a uniquely spacious capacity for joy and delight.

Because Tanya has not seen Original Cast Album: Company, we quickly switched over to YouTube to watch Dean Jones’s glorious performance of the musical’s climactic “Being Alive,” which was excerpted in James Lapine’s 2013 documentary Six by Sondheim and revived last year as a conversation piece by Adam Driver’s rendition at the end of Noah Baumbach’s Marriage Story. No matter who’s singing it, what “Being Alive” interrogates— via the same precisely sequenced, essayistic approach as Company’s other standouts, “You Could Drive a Person Crazy” and “The Ladies Who Lunch”—is the double-edged nature of isolation: the thin line between the freedom endemic to independence and the creeping, existential terror of lacking a companion: “someone to sit in your chair, to ruin your sleep.” The equation of monogamy as a form of cozy claustrophobia is a musical-comedy staple (kidded grimly at the end of Bob Fosse’s version of Pippin, whose protagonist concedes to being “trapped...but happy” at the end of his trials) and by no means the universal truth it’s grasping to be. But on the night that we were watching it, Jones’s closed-eye belting of the title phrase hit me like a proverbial ton of bricks, shocking me into sober awareness and humbled gratitude for the things that I have. —Adam Nayman

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1737棋牌游戏中心Sunrise in the Dark http://gybsgdx.cn/archive/entry/2657/our_house_sunrise http://gybsgdx.cn/archive/entry/2657/our_house_sunrise feature Fri, 03 Apr 2020 00:00:00 -0400 Chris Wisniewski Our House Sunrise in the Dark
By Chris Wisniewski

Though I took four classes there, I don’t remember much about the space, despite its status as an architectural landmark. The Harvard Film Archive is nestled in the basement of the Carpenter Center for the Visual Arts—the only Le Corbusier-designed building in the country. I recall ascending the ramp at the Center’s entrance and the descent to the theater itself. That’s about it, other than vague memories of sitting through lectures by Eric Rentschler and Isaac Julien and screenings of Lili Marleen (my first Fassbinder) and Killer of Sheep11选5必中一个号, when the privilege of watching Charles Burnett’s masterpiece was a rarity.

Still, I’ll never forget lining up for an evening screening of F.W. Murnau’s Sunrise: A Song of Two Humans during my junior year. It was a public screening, but required viewing for a course taught by Giuliana Bruno, something having to do with cinema and the city. As I approached the door to the theater, I recognized the ticket taker as my Teaching Fellow from a class I’d taken the year before, called Black Cinema as Genre. (Who would have thought that he’d go on to become a well-regarded member of the New York film community, someone I’d still know professionally some 20 years later?). We exchanged pleasantries, and I mentioned that I’d never actually seen the Murnau film.

“I envy your virgin eyes,” he told me.

The rest of the experience is a blur. By now, I feel as if Sunrise 11选5必中一个号has seeped into my moviegoing soul, transcending and eclipsing any one particular encounter with it. But I’ve never forgotten that exchange just before my first viewing of it.

***

I write this essay after two weeks of social distancing, on a Friday after a week that saw layoffs and furloughs decimate many of the institutions that define New York film culture—the Museum of the Moving Image, Brooklyn Academy of Music, Film at Lincoln Center (forever a Society in my heart). Right now, the human toll of this crisis is hitting me hard. These institutions are more than touchstones for cinephiles like myself; they are also employers for programmers, marketing professionals, box office staff, security guards, projectionists, and others who have been my friends and colleagues for nearly two decades. The costs to people I know, admire, and care about weigh heavily.

In every corner of the city and around the country, movie theaters sit in the dark right now, with no light from the booth to illuminate their screens. When film lovers write the stories of their moviegoing lives, they often focus on the movies themselves and, sometimes, the audiences. I do the same. I’ll never forget exiting a theater on a brisk October night in San Francisco, my hands trembling after first seeing Mulholland Dr., or the sublime exhilaration I had driving back to my parents’ house from the Downer Theater in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, after watching Before Sunset 11选5必中一个号on a beautiful summer night. The movies are the story, of course. And yet, these are experiences that are embedded in specific places: cities, neighborhoods, theaters.

My life as a moviegoer began at the now defunct Southtown Cinema 4 on Highway 100 in West Allis, Wisconsin. Now a strip mall, this modest suburban multiplex is where my late grandmother took me and my sister to see the abominable 1991 Chevy Chase and Demi Moore vehicle Nothing but Trouble—the first time I recall seeing a movie I knew was objectively bad. It’s where my mother took us to see Beaches against her better judgment, because my sister and I insisted, having convinced ourselves we were in for a delightful romp about two mischievous lifelong friends. It’s where my high school friends and I saw Stargate and Crimson Tide and A Time to Kill and a digitally enhanced Star Wars Episode IV—A New Hope.

The Brattle Theater in Cambridge became my next touchtone. As a child and teenager, I pushed up against the cultural limits of my midwestern home, exhausting the artistic possibilities that the Southtown Cinema 4 and my local Blockbuster, with its modest but respectable “Foreign” shelves, had to offer. College gave me a chance to reinvent myself, and my moviegoing habits were central to that reinvention. I discovered cinema as an art form at the Brattle. There, I saw Vertigo, Psycho, and Notorious. I was one of many snarky undergraduates who packed a screening of Written on the Wind, giggling through the film until an indignant older woman yelled, “Stop laughing! It’s not funny.” I fell for Kurosawa, Fellini, and Bergman at the Brattle, like generations of students before me. Seen from the perspective of the Brattle’s history, I was a cliché. I’m fine with that. Over four years, the theater became, for me, a sacred space, a shrine to the seventh art.

After college, I moved to San Francisco for one lonely year, and the stunning Castro Theater became my anchor, a place I felt safe, social, and connected in a city where I was otherwise crushingly isolated and sad. I’ve never had a more glorious moviegoing experience than seeing 2001: A Space Odyssey in 70mm at the Castro, complete with a “Thus Spoke Zarathustra” overture on the theater’s Wurlitzer, and I’ve never felt a purer joy at the movies than watching Funny Girl there, surrounded by fellow gays who taught me, for the first time, why I should love Barbra Streisand. If the city greeted me with cold indifference, the Castro seemed to envelope me in a warmth that gave me more comfort than I can properly describe.

When I moved to New York City in 2002, I discovered, for the first time, a true home for myself, and the city’s cinematic treasures came to define my adult life. I had my second date with my future husband at Film Forum. I sat through my first Hou Hsiao-hsien film on one of Anthology Film Archivesfamously uncomfortable seats. (The screening was interrupted when the projector blew a bulb at a reel change.) I had seen my first Terence Davies film, The House of Mirth, at the Paris, while visiting during college; I saw my second—The Long Day Closes—in the mid-aughts at the MoMA. I endured Shoah in a single day at BAM, and I’m a better person for it.

11选5必中一个号 Now, these places sit alone in the dark. The Brattle, the Castro, and New York City’s great repertory screens, including its two crown jewels, Lincoln Center’s Walter Reade Theater and the Sumner Redstone Theater at Museum of the Moving Image. Right now, they’re just empty rooms, but they are also the settings for some of my life’s most profound, moving, and transformative artistic experiences.

***

I saw Sunrise a second time in 2003, three years after my first viewing at the HFA. At that point a New Yorker living in Brooklyn, I took my first trek to Astoria, Queens, to what was then called the American Museum of the Moving Image for a Saturday matinee of the film in the Riklis Theater. I could never have guessed then that this particular journey, which took over an hour, would become my daily commute for more than a decade. I never imagined that the person who sold me my ticket or the guard who took that ticket on the way into the theater would eventually become my colleagues. Sitting in that audience, I never would have thought that one day I’d be perched on the edge of the stage of the Riklis teaching high school students. I remember that second screening of Sunrise more vividly than the first, perhaps because AMMI’s audience got such a kick out of the drunken pig in the film’s second act. I remember all of us laughing together at Murnau’s delightful depiction of urban mayhem, and the memory brings a smile to my face.

The Riklis is long gone, like the “American” in the Museum’s name. I worked at the Museum throughout its $67M expansion, which saw the demolition of the Riklis and the creation of the Redstone, with its Yves Klein–blue acoustic paneling and signature multi-colored curtain. There’s still a projection booth where the Riklis’s used to sit, though it’s not the Redstone’s. Instead it services the Bartos Screening Room, a 68-seat space we used for our education programs after the Museum’s reopening in 2011. Over a decade after I first visited the Museum for a screening of Sunrise11选5必中一个号, I would find myself teaching the film to high school students in the Bartos. Introducing the movie, I told them the story of the first time I saw Murnau’s masterpiece, when a teacher of mine said to me, on my way into the theater, “I envy your virgin eyes.”

***

In Sunrise, the City is a locus of intrigue, danger, and adventure. The film retreats to the comfort and security of family and a country home, but it celebrates the endless possibility offered by the hustle and bustle of the city, with its traffic and restaurants and clubs and bars and mobs of people.

The second to last film I saw this month—before our movie theaters were closed indefinitely—was Hiroshi Teshigahara’s Woman in the Dunes at BAM, my neighborhood art house theater. Teshigahara’s film is ostensibly about a man from Tokyo who is abducted by villagers in a remote beach town. In another sense, though, it traces the psychological effect of extreme isolation. Teshigahara’s hero has been ripped away from the city and forced into social distance, a hermetic existence in a modest hut where he spends his days alone with a woman who longs for a radio to connect to the wider world. How apt.

11选5必中一个号 I live in our country’s largest city, but right now, I miss the city—the crowds and coffee shops, the traffic and street noise, my office and colleagues, my friends, even the subway. I miss the repertory screen at BAM. And I miss the Redstone. I worry about them, as well as the Walter Reade, the Castro, and the Brattle. It probably sounds silly, in the middle of a pandemic that is costing people’s lives and livelihoods, for me to admit that I spend any emotional energy worrying about movie theaters. When I think about what they’ve given me, though, and how they’ve defined my life, my heart swells.

11选5必中一个号 I wish I could thank them, but they’re just empty rooms.

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