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 »
From a murky landscape, a wooded mountain emerges. We watch the sun. We see a bearded man climbing up the mountain through the snow. He carries an ax, and he's accompanied by a dog. His ... See full summary »
A man, accompanied by a dog, struggles through snow on a mountain side. We see film stock blister; drawn square shapes appear. Then, we see an infant's face. The images of struggling ... See full summary »
Sexual intimacy. Three kinds of images race past, superimposed on each other sometimes: two bodies, a man and a woman's, close up, nude - patches of skin, wisps of hair, glimpses of a face ... See full summary »
A man is supine on a mountain side. Images rush past of nature and a stained glass saint. An infant is born. We see a lactating nipple. Images include a mountain peak, farm buildings, a ... 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 »
A stand of birches. Sunlight brightens and dims, revealing more or less of the woods. A little grass is on the forest floor. Is there a shape in the shadows? Something green is out of focus... See full summary »
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Forensic pathologists perform autopsies. The first two consist of examination, measurement, and checking muscles. The remaining ones involve cutting away bone to expose and examine internal organs, peeling back skin and muscle, removing organs, using syringes to extract bodily fluids, and cutting pieces of tissue. Clothes are inventoried. As each autopsy ends, bodies are covered with sheets. There is no soundtrack. We see a body with extensive burns. The work is sometimes delicate, sometimes not; but it's always gory so be warned. Written by
This film is a truly artistic mastery of the form. Brakhage has succeeded in taking images, that at times can be gruesome, and combined them into a dance of sorts. His mastery of camera movement and editing have created a work that despite it's grotesque imagery, is exciting to look at. The vivid colors, and smooth motion he achieved have a soothing feeling to the viewer, rather than shocking. Through his elegance behind the camera, Brakhage manages to captivate the viewer, not with the images that he shows, rather with the pacing and and style of his work. The choice of no soundtrack either, adds to this trance-like effect experienced from this film. Overall a 10 rating and a masterpiece of Avant-Garde Cinema.
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