Four young men and a young woman sit in boredom. She smokes while one strums a lute, one looks at a magazine, and two fiddle with string. The door opens and in comes a young man, cigarette ... See full summary »

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Cast

Cast overview:
A. Austin ...
Man #1 (as Austin)
Robert Benson ...
Man #2 (as Benson)
Yvonne Fair ...
Woman (as Fair)
Larry Jordan ...
Man #3 (as Jordan)
Walter Newcomb ...
Man #4 (as Newcomb)
James Tenney ...
Man #5 (as Tenney)
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Storyline

Four young men and a young woman sit in boredom. She smokes while one strums a lute, one looks at a magazine, and two fiddle with string. The door opens and in comes a young man, cigarette between his lips, a swagger on his face. The young woman laughs. As the four young men continue disconnected activities, the other two become a couple. When the four realize something has changed, first they stare at the couple who have kissed and now are dancing slowly. The four run from the house in a kind of frenzy and return to stare. The power of sex has unnerved them. Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

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11 October 2003 (Denmark)  »

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1.37 : 1
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Stan Brakhage's short film about a strange and horrifying party of weirdness and uncomfortable tone.
12 June 2006 | by (USA) – See all my reviews

Stan Brakhage's short film, DESISTFILM is good because it makes the audience feel warped without giving us anything in particular to feel warped about. It is all in the sound design. The image of what appears to be people doing whatever they can to defeat boredom. The film is only seven minutes long, but this is plenty of time for the viewer to be disturbed. The music is creepy and sounds unearthly, though very zany in a strange way. Why does this music bug the senses so much? Why do the images seem so cryptic an unnatural, yet normal? This film needs to be watched more than once. More than twice even. The speed of the film feels frantic, yet the interaction between different characters seem so grungy and unreal. This film is simply a series of images of people defeating boredom. and while there may be more to it than a viewer may garter, it is still a very unforgettable experience.

(I watched this film as part of the DVD short film collection of Stan Brakhage entitled, BY BRAKHAGE: AN ANTHOLOGY.)


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