A pulsing, kaleidoscope of images set to an energetic soundtrack. A young women swings in a garden; a woman's face smiles. The rest is spinning cylinders, pistons, gears and turbines, ...
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A spiral design spins dizzily. It's replaced by a spinning disk. These two continue in perfect alternation until the end: a spiral design, a disk. Each disk is labelled and can be read as ... See full summary »
A tilted figure, consisting largely of right angles at the beginning, grows by accretion, with the addition of short straight lines and curves which sprout from the existing design. The ... See full summary »
A long series of unrelated images, revolving, often distorted: lights, flowers, nails. A lightboard appears from time to time carrying the news of the day. Then, an eye. A woman in a car ... See full summary »
This short experimental film tells the story of a man who comes to Hollywood to become a star, only to fail and be dehumanized (he is identified by the number 9314 written on his forehead),... See full summary »
Black and white rectangular images fade in and out of the screen. Their movement make them sometimes look like they're panning from side to side. Their movement also make the black and ... See full summary »
Two people stand on a road, out of focus. Seen distorted through a glass, they retire upstairs to a bedroom where she undresses. He says, "Adieu." Images: the beautiful girl, a starfish in ... See full summary »
Kiki of Montparnasse,
André de la Rivière,
A pulsing, kaleidoscope of images set to an energetic soundtrack. A young women swings in a garden; a woman's face smiles. The rest is spinning cylinders, pistons, gears and turbines, kitchen objects in concentric circles or rows - pots, pan lids, and funnels, cars passing overhead, a spinning carnival ride. Over and over, a heavy-set woman climbs stairs carrying a large bag on her shoulder. An Art Deco cartoon figure appears, dancing. This is a world in motion, dominated by mechanical and repetitive images, with a few moments of solitude in a garden. Written by
George Antheil wrote the score for this film, but due to various disagreements - including that Antheil's original version of the music ran 30 minutes while the film was only 16 minutes - the film was premiered without the original music. The film and music were first shown together on 25 August 2000 in Antwerp, Belgium, at the Cultuurmarkt van Vlaanderen. The film print with music was created by Paul Lehrman. See more »
This short is often considered one of the earliest examples of real avant garde filmmaking. It's worth noting that the film is available in the UNSEEN CINEMA collection and that the production notes for this film say that the score that was written for it in 1924 was so difficult that it couldn't be performed at all. In fact, according to the notes, the score wasn't able to be completed until the late 90s when technology was good enough to try and capture the various moods and notes going on with the score. The "visuals" include a wide range of stuff from film clips to puppets to some stop-motion animation. There's no real "story" to talk about, instead we're just given various images that play well against the score as the film moves along both the images and that score grow faster and more intense. You never really know how one might take these avant garde films because many will view them as nothing more than a complete mess and while I think that can often be the case, in special cases, like this one, you can tell there's some passion and effort going into the production. I'm not going to sit here and say that a deep meaning jumped out at me but I did enjoy the experimental music and many of the visuals in front of me. The stuff with the puppet was probably my favorite but I think I'd recommend this film to those who enjoy strange music. The music is certainly the main ingredient here and it's an interesting mix that really adds to the overall experience.
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