Pierrot waxes romantic, entranced by the moon. Harlequin appears and bullies him, then uses a magic lantern to project an image of Columbine. Pierrot tries to court the illusory Columbine ... See full summary »
A soundtrack plays folk rock as a woman prepares, at noon, to take her Borzois for a walk. She goes through her dresses, all 1920's style flapper gowns, holding them one at a time, shaking ... See full summary »
A Slavonic Mass by Leos Janácek plays as historical figures, biblical characters, and mythical creatures gather in the pleasure dome. Aphrodite, Lilith, Isis, Kali, Astarte, Nero, Pan, and ... See full summary »
Samson De Brier,
A woman dressed elegantly walks purposely through the water gardens at the Villa d'Este in Tivoli, as the music of Vivaldi's "Winter" movement of "The Four Seasons" plays. Heavy red filters... See full summary »
Dancers, shown in photographic negative, perform a series of ballet moves, solos, pas de deux, larger groupings. The dancers glide and rotate untroubled by gravity against a slowly changing... See full summary »
An army of gay/nazi bikers make their engines roar and ride the way to pain/pleasure as sexual and sadistic symbols are intercut into the dazing chaos and rhythmic experiences of this ... See full summary »
Pierrot waxes romantic, entranced by the moon. Harlequin appears and bullies him, then uses a magic lantern to project an image of Columbine. Pierrot tries to court the illusory Columbine unsuccessfully, then enters a mystical moon-realm from which he returns dead. Written by
The short films of Kenneth Anger are certainly NOT for the casual film goer! The best way to describe them is avant-garde--and often make little sense, as they are not meant to be shown to the masses. Some are incredibly artistic--like filmed work of art. Some are really cheaply made and definitely look it. Regardless, they are a challenge to watch and I very strongly recommend you see them with his commentary activated. So why would I see these shorts? Well, in a recent interview I noticed that John Waters credits Anger for much of his inspiration. And, since I have seen all the films of Waters that are available (a couple very early ones aren't), it seems natural I'd give Anger's films a try. This and four other reviews are best on the DVD "Films of Kenneth Anger: Volume 1".
My summary above says 'finally' because after two extremely difficult to watch and rather amateurish shorts, this one represents something special--something that shows true artistry. While the story is still a bit on the vague side, from a purely artistic level this is a lovely film to see. It features Pierrot from the French version of La Comedia Dell'Arte and later you see a few other related characters, such as the woman of his dreams, Columbine. It's all quite strange but also strangely alluring. It really needs to be seen and not described, as this blue-tinted film is lovely and shows Anger's latent talents emerging. The only major deficit is the doo wop music which is quite distracting--and similar to the music that Waters used in one of his earliest films, MONDO TRASHO.
By the way, although I mentioned it above, use the commentary option. There is a lot of interesting stuff, including that the Japanese see the man in the Moon as a rabbit!
By the way, on the second DVD from this set, you see a 1979 version of the film as well. It's the same original film with every other frame removed (speeding it up) as well as a new sound track. I much prefer the original and give the new version a 6.
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