Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Wise Words from Raúl Ruiz

"I believe in a superstition which many artists believe in. There's a moment in the invention process, in the art of creation, when you're producing any work of art, that is a kind of control translation and it's not you who is creating the piece anymore but the work of art which is creating itself. Actually, people are producing objects that in the future will be independent things. Maybe they can even kill us."

- Raúl Ruiz, 2012.

"My German producer said: 'We need a concept, then preparation, then execution'. But I tried to say to him: 'Well, you need preparation, execution - ideally execution first - then preparation, then re-execution, then re-preparation, then re-execution, then re-preparation, re-execution, re-preparation, re-execution and then, at the end, maybe a concept. If you are lucky.'"

- Raúl Ruiz, 2006.

"I have, of course, some general ideas about film. But I never have only one. I have… five… seven… And it's part of one or part of the other. I listen to the sounds, try to see what the images really mean for me. Concrete images, not about the whole film. And the film will be the result of those small pieces of images. Anyway, the way I cook is more or less the same way I make my films. I put things and take away things during the film and during cooking. The result is sometimes the opposite of what we thought we were making. So, when I make films, sometimes it's just the fact that the light changed: I put a filter and then I put another one and then the filter sometimes makes me change the dialogue. Sometimes the result is nothing, sometimes it works. Not always. Sometimes it's a bit rich, with too many things inside. I don't feel that a film is a dish. The film itself is more than that. It's the dish and the restaurant and the town. And the world."

- Raúl Ruiz, 1988. 

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

EFS @ BYOB Stockton-on-Trent

A special screening of Experimental Film Society work will be featured in a BYOB. (Bring Your Own Beamer) event on August 19th at The Auxiliary, Stockton-on-Tees, UK.

The night will include EFS films:
Sumpf (2015) by Jann Clavadetscher
Mirage (2015) by Atoosa Pour Hosseini
Cut To The Chase (2015) by Dean Kavanagh
Brine Twice Daily (2015) by Vicky Langan/Maximilian Le Cain
Incubus (2013) by Atoosa Pour Hosseini
Impulsive Film (2015) by Jann Clavadetscher

Also featured are artists Sorcha mcCole, Jared Pappas-Kelley, Paul Stewart, Omsk Social Club Feat. PUNK is DADA, Milos Trakilovic, Nathan Baxter, Pete Fleming, Thomas Tyler, Stephen Irving, Ryan David Butler and more TBA.

Garden Tunes by Spectacular Optical.

B.Y.O.B. is a series of one-night-exhibitions curated by different people around the world. The idea is simple: Find a place, invite many artists, ask them to bring their projectors.

More info here & here.

Monday, August 15, 2016


Saturday, August 06, 2016


Work in progress... Watch this space.

Monday, July 11, 2016

The Fifth Gospel of Kaspar Hauser @ Phantoscope, Cork

I'm delighted to announce that the next Phantoscope presentation at Cork's Triskel Christchurch Cinema will be Alberto Gracia's visionary take on the Kaspar Hauser legend, The Fifth Gospel of Kaspar Hauser (2013). Alberto will be in Cork to present the film but also, more importantly, to shoot a new work.  

6.30pm, Saturday July 23rd.
Full details and ticket bookings here.

The story of Kaspar Hauser, who grew up in dark isolation from humanity, it is provided by a Gallician artist with a radical experimental adaptation that aims to be nothing less than a religious message. Black & white 16mm, without the language of reason, eye to eye with the primaeval puzzle.

The story of Kaspar Hauser, the German 'wild child' who grew up for 16 years in silence and virtually in the dark in a stable with only a wooden horse as company, remains fascinating, also for filmmakers. Werner Herzog did a film on him in 1974. In The Fifth Gospel of Kaspar Hauser, mostly shot in atmospheric black-and-white on 16mm, we see impressions of his life and ‘civilising process’.
On one side there is ubiquitous nature, a world without language, and on the other we see him in the company of several archetypes: a masked, sadomasochistic dwarf; a vamp-like girl; a seaman and a man in a Batman suit (played by the director, Alberto Gracia).

The soundtrack also has a constant tension between the peaceful sounds of nature and ominous music. Gracia divides his ‘gospel’ of Kaspar Hauser into seven chapters. The sixth is an absurdist intermezzo with the archetypal characters' dialogues in intertitles.

Wednesday, July 06, 2016

Abbas Kiarostami (1940 - 2016)

I seem to recall that Nicole Brenez once made a case that the '90s was one of the three greatest decades for cinema. This statement would have been made around the '90s, the decade of most of my teen years and early twenties. The decade I was learning about cinema and life in tandem, years that will never be repeated. The formative years of seeing what cinema is capable of and becoming sensitive to new lessons, new experiences. Abel Ferrara, Wong-Kar Wai, Hou Hsiao-Hsien (the opening shot of Millenium Mambo on endless loop), Pola X, Histoire(s) du cinéma, Lost Highway, The Double Life of Veronique, Pialat's Van Gogh, Whispering Pages, Scorsese's best decade, Sarunas Bartas... And, central and essential to it all, the towering work of Abbas Kiarostami. The sense of growing along with each new work of his that emerged. One of the brightest guiding lights.

The years pass in a twinkling and I find Like Someone In Love (2012) to be one of the most disconcerting and mysterious films of recent years. One that really got under my skin to an unusual extent. With time, this master gets more unpredictable, more unsettling. Part of the emotion I felt after watching it was an urgent curiosity about what might come next in Kiarostami's ouevre. But now he has followed in the grimly steady procession of great filmmakers to have left the planet in 2016. Perhaps there is some consolation to be gained from the fact that he left at the height of his powers, in the wake of a masterpiece.

Rest in peace.   

Sunday, July 03, 2016

Michael Cimino (1939 - 2016)

Heaven's Gate remains one of the towering masterpieces of American cinema.