I dunno dude’s reaction to that missed FT at the end wasn’t very #based
Thank you, Kerry & Lauren! And also thanks to Ed Droste for the kind words and support.
Next week, we’ll take a look at long-running, genre-bending, and “opinion-splitting” jam band Phish.
Guest writer is Phil Coldiron, who is the editor for film & electronic art at Idiom Magazine, and has contributed to a number of film publications, including Cinema Scope, Slant, Moving Image Source, and LA Weekly.
I promise that I’m not going to try to convince anyone to like Phish.
Sleepwalk (Sara Driver, 1986)
The mood from Duelle. A story from a napkin that Pynchon threw out when he was making notes for Lot 49. A lead actress with the most expressive nose this side of Laura Dern. Sara Driver gets at an image in the most complicated manner she can, usually finding about 18 different shadows and then circling them with a few more distractions – even when things seem like they’re moving toward a point of coherence it’s a movie at odds with itself. What sets her apart from Rivette and Pynchon: where their disintegrations lead to new narratives – Gravity’s Rainbow falls apart and still has 200 pages to go, Out 1 sustains itself hours after it’s irrelevant whether or not there was ever even the idea for a conspiracy – Sleepwalk ends after just 75 minutes with the movie expelling some characters and others deciding they don’t much feel liking being in a movie anymore. Suzanne Fletcher lying down to sleep, adrift and with her son still missing, is one of the great acts of resistance in the history of cinema: this situation is shit and I won’t stand for it, so take your movie and shove it. If only we were all that brave in the face of injustice.
Numéro zéro (Jean Eustache, 1971)
First things first: dialectical film: two cameras – one moves, the other doesn’t. The movement of the one is purely optical, which is both psychological and historical; the stasis of the other is purely scientific. A film about history: of the 20th century; of a woman; of a family; of a future; of Jean Eustache’s beautiful life. A film about science: an experiment in two concurrent and contiguous halves: the doubled recording of 9 reels of 16mm film, occurring in real time; hypothesis: the cinema is both purely objective and subjective. The creation of one history – the one that we watch that’s called Numéro zéro creates a parallel history: one we’ll never see, the phantom film of the other camera. As Odette Robert tells us about a 20th century, Jean Eustache tells another one, which is both more abstract and more concrete. It’s one that’s built equally of a presence – the production of a reality and the reality of its production – and an absence – the phantom of the other camera becomes the 20th centuries that Odette can’t tell; they are the ghost that’ll haunt the cinema forever.