2 items from 2011
On Sunday 6 February, fans of silent cinema were treated to the first event of the Barbican Centre's 'City Symphonies' series. Berlin, Symphony of a City (1927) and Manhatta (1921) both played to a packed out audience, who were no doubt drawn by the opportunity to see these gems on 35mm film and with live musical accompaniment by REFLEKTOR2 (Jan Kopinski on saxophone, Steve Iliffe on piano).
The afternoon's programme began with the short avant-garde film Manhatta, an experimental collaboration by painter Charles Sheeler and photographer Paul Strand that produced this visually stunning representation of New York. Images of the vast metropolis are cut with intertitles taken from Walt Whitman's Sparkles on the Wheel, which gives the film a slow, poetic rhythm.
The montage editing used creates an association of meaning between shots. Aerial views of people swarming en masse around the city like ants are interweaved with a shot of hundreds »
- Daniel Green
With 2010 only a week over, it already feels like best-of and top-ten lists have been pouring in for months, and we’re already tired of them: the ranking, the exclusions (and inclusions), the rules and the qualifiers. Some people got to see films at festivals, others only catch movies on video; and the ability for us, or any publication, to come up with a system to fairly determine who saw what when and what they thought was the best seems an impossible feat. That doesn’t stop most people from doing it, but we liked the fantasy double features we did last year and for our 3rd Writers Poll we thought we'd do it again.
I asked our contributors to pick a single new film they saw in 2010—in theaters or at a festival—and creatively pair it with an old film they saw in 2010 to create a unique double feature. »
2 items from 2011
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