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4 items from 2015

The Forgotten: Nobuhiko Obayashi's "Emotion" (1967)

12 November 2015 5:31 AM, PST | MUBI | See recent MUBI news »

It's reassuring to learn that the gulf between east and west isn't as great as we might assume: it turns out that, in the sixties, just as they did in Europe and America, people in Japan got about mainly by means of jump-cuts.Nobuhiko Obayashi is best known for Hausu (a.k.a. House, 1977), a dayglo, balls-out insane horror movie that plays like a cross between The Evil Dead, a lunatic's idea of Douglas Sirk, and a girl's comic, all fed through a mincer and laced with psilocybin. The prolific filmmaker (still going strong today) actually began in the sixties with TV commercials and experimental films, of which the forty-minute oddity Emotion is one.The movie, a collage of camera effects, stills, pixillation and every other trick the decade had to offer, opens with a dedication to Roger Vadim's Blood and Roses, but though the film does feature lesbianism and vampirism, »

- David Cairns

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Masterworks of American Avant-Garde Experimental Film 1920-1970

5 October 2015 8:14 PM, PDT | Trailers from Hell | See recent Trailers from Hell news »

Get your beret and warm up the espresso! Some of the most famous deep-dish art film is here -- in HD -- starting with attempts to translate various art 'isms' to the screen, to graphics-oriented abstractions, to 'city symphonies' to the dream visions of Maya Deren and beyond. The careful remasters reproduce proper projection speeds and original music.   Masterworks of American Avant-Garde Experimental Film 1920-1970 Blu-ray + DVD Flicker Alley 1920-1970 / B&W and Color / 1:33 full frame / 418 min. / Street Date October 6, 2015 / 59.95 With films by James Agee, Kenneth Anger, Bruce Baillie, Stan Brakhage, James Broughton, Rudolph Burckhardt, Mary Ellen Bute, Joseph Cornell, Jim Davis, Maya Deren, Marcel Duchamp, Emien Etting, Oksar Fischinger, Robert Florey, Amy Greenfield, A. Hackenschmied, Alexander Hammid, Hillary Harris, Hy Hirsh, Ian Hugo, Lawrence Janiac, Lawrence Jordan, Owen Land, Francis Lee, Fernand Léger, Helen Levitt, Jan Leyda, Janice Loeb, Jonas Mekas, Marie Menken, Dudley Murphy, Ted Nemeth, Bernard O'Brien, »

- Glenn Erickson

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For Norman McLaren form is everything

4 April 2015 4:22 PM, PDT | SoundOnSight | See recent SoundOnSight news »

For Norman McLaren form is everything. That makes sense given the medium he chose to express his art. Short films are, perhaps more than any other expression of film, succinct and to the point. The story is in the form, the vision is in the form, the art is in the form. To that end many directors have spent many years trying their best to manipulate the form. Film is malleable after all, that is the most breathtaking aspect of the medium. To see something so straightforward taken and twisted until it meets the vision of the artist is akin to the definition of art.

That is where Norman McLaren enters the picture. He was a master at taking the form of the short film and twisting and turning it until it fit his vision of art. Take a film like Dots for instance. A simple red animated landscape is »

- Bill Thompson

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2015 Ann Arbor Film Festival: Official Lineup

24 March 2015 4:10 PM, PDT | Underground Film Journal | See recent Underground Film Journal news »

The Ann Arbor Film Festival celebrates its epic 53rd annual edition on March 24-29 with a colossal selection of experimental short films and features.

Feature film highlights include the documentary Speculation Nation by regular collaborators Bill Brown and Sabine Gruffat, which examines the recent Spanish housing crisis; a new ethnographic doc by Ben Russell, Greetings to the Ancestors, which plunges deep into the culture of South Africa; and Jenni Olson’s grand California study The Royal Road.

Short film highlights include the much anticipated new film by Jennifer Reeder, Blood Below the Skin, a narrative following a week in the dramatic and romantic lives of three teenage girls; a new music video by Mike Olenick called Beautiful Things with music by The Wet Things; new animations by Don HertzfeldtWorld of Tomorrow, and Lewis Klahr, Mars Garden; plus new experimental work by Vanessa Renwick, Peggy Ahwesh and Zachary Epcar.

Special »

- Mike Everleth

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