In an earlier post, I asked the question “What exactly is that movie?” in order to address forms of visual communication through a series of commercials. For those who may wish to explore the wilds of avant garde filmmaking, right now at the New York Film Festival, there is a retrospective titled Luminous Intimacy: The Cinema of Nathaniel Dorsky and Jerome Hiler. From the NYFF53 site, “For the last six decades, Nathaniel Dorsky and Jerome Hiler, partners in life and in cinema, have taken their cameras out into the world and filmed gestures, moods, atmospheres, states of being, light and darkness, movement and stillness. Hiler’s register is ecstatic and polyphonic, Dorsky’s devotional and poetic. And, simply put, they are two of the greatest filmmakers alive.” You can also check out a recent article by film critic Manohla Dargis about their work in The New York Times. Despite the access today’s students — and, in fact, all of us with Internet — have to the swirling miasma of videos streaming about the netverse (YouTube or otherwise), the mediascapes of avant grade or poetic or experimental cinema seem as distant as ever to the average media viewer, it would appear to me.*
Talking about maverick moviemakers, director Michel Gondry will be appearing at the festival next week for a free talk concerning his new film Microbe and Gasoline, a coming-of-age movie about two French teenage boys.
*That said, I did have to chuckle a bit at what seemed to me to be a very inventive homage to the avant-garde work of Derek Jarman in the recently released video of New Order’s song Restless, directed by the filmmaking collective NYSU.