A visual representation, in four parts, of one man's internalization of "The Divine Comedy." Hell is a series of multicolored brush strokes against a white background; the speed of the ... See full summary »
Phrases of Stephen Foster, set to music by Joel Heartling, are set to film in this autobiographical piece: a solitary female voice, occasionally joined by a chorus, sings phrases of sorrow ... See full summary »
A collage of two-dimensional images of vegetation, each appearing only for a moment, sometimes as a single image, more often with other bits of stem, leaf, bud, or petal. Often we see only ... See full summary »
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 »
Images of two women, two men, and a gray cat form a montage of rapid bits of movement. A woman is in a bedroom, another wears an apron: they work with their hands, occasionally looking up. ... See full summary »
'Delicacies of Molten Horror Synapse (1991)' was described as follows by its creator: "The primary "Molten Horror" is TV - though there are other horrors metaphored in the film. Four superimposed rolls of hand-painted and bi-packed television negative imagery are edited so as to approximate the hypnagogic process whereby the optic nerves resist grotesque infusions of luminescent light." Before you all scramble for a dictionary, the word "hypnagogic" means "of or pertaining to drowsiness." With this in mind, the film does do a fair job of recreating those hazy seconds before one falls asleep before a television, an indistinct garble of flickering lights and shadows, their incomprehensibility an open invitation to surrender to one's fatigue.
However, most overwhelming is the sense that one can feel the radiation emanating from their television screen (similar to the smothering warmth of 'Cat's Cradle (1959)'). The ten-minute film is a succession of "warm" colours, occasionally interrupted by a distorted screen flicker that suggests one is sitting far too close to the television. At one point, Brakhage focuses on a molten red "eye," perhaps a magnified artifact on the screen, which rather disconcertingly blinks in unison with the viewer. Though I later failed to capture it frame-by-frame, there's also a lengthy succession of images that I could swear depicted the shimmering skeletal frame of a human (mostly the pelvic region), as though the radiation is passing straight through skin and flesh.
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