IMDb > Zorns Lemma (1970)

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A rhythmically edited alphabet composed of street and shop signs shot in New York City and other elements is gradually replaced by repeated seemingly abstract shots in this influential structuralist film. | Add synopsis »
(8 articles)
"A Matter of Visibility" at First Look 2016
 (From MUBI. 22 January 2016, 9:38 AM, PST)

Underground Film Links: November 11, 2012
 (From Underground Film Journal. 11 November 2012, 11:41 AM, PST)

Underground Film Links: April 29, 2012
 (From Underground Film Journal. 29 April 2012, 6:00 AM, PDT)

User Reviews:
Amazing See more (4 total) »


Rosemarie Castoro ... (voice)
Ginger Michels ... (voice)
Marcia Steinbrecher ... (voice)

Twyla Tharp ... (voice)
Susan Weiner ... (voice)
Joyce Wieland ... (voice)

Directed by
Hollis Frampton 


Additional Details

Also Known As:
60 min
Aspect Ratio:
1.33 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:


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5 out of 7 people found the following review useful.
Amazing, 1 March 2004
Author: Afracious from England

This is an amazing experimental film from American avant-garde filmmaker Hollis Frampton. It begins with a dark screen and a woman narrating from The Bay State Primer, an early American grammar textbook that teaches the letters of the alphabet by using them in sentences derived from the Bible, then the rest of the film is mostly silent. It presents us with a recurring structure that perpetually moves throughout a 24-letter alphabet via various signs in New York with words that propel the film along. Gradually other images are added to the loop, some of them themselves slowly developing as we arrive at them the next time around. It concludes with a man, woman and dog crossing a snowy field, while several narrators each narrate one word at a time read from an 11th century treatise, "On Light, or the Ingression of Forms", by Robert Grosseteste. Ambiguous, metaphorical and fascinating. A veritable masterpiece of structural filmmaking. 

The film is also a major influence on Peter Greenaway - it is one of the films he most admires.

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