Friday, June 14, 2013


FR/PT 2013. D: Peter Greenaway (Just in Time), Jean-Luc Godard (Les trois désastres / The Three Disasters), Edgar Pêra (Cinesapiens). 2K DCP from Urban Distribution in 3D viewed with Dolby 3D glasses with English subtitles at Cinema Lapinsuu, Sodankylä (Midnight Sun Film Festival), 14 June 2013

The Festival Catalogue: "Jean-Luc Godard's (born 1930) career spans through some of the most visually beautiful shots in cinema (Jean Seberg's face that conveys every possible Faulknerian nuance of happiness and suffering, Brigitte Bardot's proudly perky and rebellious but patriotic bottom clad in Tricolor... ), but, on the other hand, also a lot of the most appalling, provoking and senseless video musch one could produce with 'My First Sony'. The thought of him stepping out of his heavy cloud of cigar smoke to coquet around with the neo-retro 3D medium that is mainly a machine gun for capitalist, commercial spectacles (of course we do remember for example the wonderful contributions by Vincent Price and Alfred Hitchcock) is both a painfully logical and a disturbingly perverted twist."
    "Naturally also involved is Peter Greenaway (born 1942), another amiable nutcase snob par excellence. He, too, has questioned the classical forms of cinema in his works as well as many of his even more theoretical comments for a long time, but, besides, he happens to be also one of the most cultured people when it comes to a more comprehensive and profound knowledge of the history of visual arts."
    "The Portuguese Edgar Pêra (born 1960) is a multi-talent who has made more than a hundred productions not only in film but also in the fields of television, dance, art galleries, the Internet, film concerts, and other media. He is a more unknown character to us who still know so little about the world of cinema, but this does not mean he is not a force to reckon with. A telling fact is that he is known in cinema circles as 'the most stubbornly individualistic Portuguese film-maker'."
    "Anything can be expected from this threesome and their new wild joint venture in three parts and three dimensions. Godard's episode The Three Disasters studies the historical memory of 3D. Greenaway's Just in Time criss-crosses in historic connections spanning over 900 years. And Pêra's Cinesapiens sums up in fast-forward the various formats of film watching from cave paintings through the introductions of sound and colour to the very latest technological developments."
    "So here is a treat with special dimensions - of which there are certainly more than three - and it is fresh out of Cannes!" (Lauri Timonen)

Three explorations into 3D.

Peter Greenaway's Just in Time is a space odyssey: a journey into the depth of architecture, surrounded by virtual reality, with a sense of sacred space, "an immaterial church". Flying transparent writing is a central element in this expensive spectacle which is also a voyage into history. I failed to get this beyond the superficial level.

Jean-Luc Godard's Les trois désastres is a 3D essay into the fabric of Les Histoire(s) du cinéma. The theme: Mémoire historique (holocaust, revolution). There is a low definition, even denatured, video look in the images themselves, and the 3D effect is used for the collage in depth: several images are superimposed on top of each other. The images and the sentences are like incantantions, and a figure like Godard, himself, appears in extreme close-up as a mad sage.

Nanook of the North - Ivan the Terrible - Nuit et brouillard - Nosferatu - Othello (Welles) - The Great Dictator - Madame de... - splatter - Tystnaden? - Tarkovsky? - It's Always Fair Weather - Il deserto rosso - Johnny Guitar - cave paintings - Barefoot Contessa - Arsenal? - The Lady of Shanghai

Mémoire historique - Passeport du réel - Reality lingers between ghosts - Les dés-astres - Lettres et néant - Les mots sont la présence, n'est pas - Reality in reality - Vol la Wittgenstein - Numérique une dictature - Tale told by dogs - Le temps mort - The vain glory of command - Happy times - Pages blanches

Edgar Pêra's Cinesapiens is a lightweight coda to the episode film, from cavemen to the train coming to the station until today.

A playful collection of approaches and experiments. Godard's multi-layered 3D superimpositions can become an interesting model for a new kind of collage.

No problem with the technical quality of the 3D presentation.

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