7.1/10
381
6 user 3 critic

21-87 (1964)

| Documentary, Short
Snippets from discarded footage, and with footage shot on the streets of Montreal and New York City, combined to a collage with the underlying argument as to whether man is a complex machine or a creature with a soul.

Director:

Reviews

Photos

Add Image Add an image

Do you have any images for this title?

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

The current day-to-day life is much different than what it was thirty or forty years ago, but it is the life to which we as people are now accustomed and take for granted. But it also ... See full summary »

Director: Arthur Lipsett
A Movie (1958)
Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Clips of atomic explosions, pornography, and B-movies are spliced together to evoke certain emotions.

Director: Bruce Conner
Stars: Theodore Roosevelt
Outer Space (1999)
Animation | Short | Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

A premonition of a horror film, lurking danger: A house - at night, slightly tilted in the camera's view, eerily lit - surfaces from the pitch black, then sinks back into it again. A young ... See full summary »

Director: Peter Tscherkassky
Stars: Barbara Hershey
Free Fall (1964)
Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  
Director: Arthur Lipsett
Ryan (2004)
Documentary | Animation | Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

The movie talks about the life of Ryan Larkin, a gifted Canadian animator of the late '60s and the early '70s.

Director: Chris Landreth
Stars: Ryan Larkin, Chris Landreth, Felicity Fanjoy
Le Paysagiste (1976)
Animation | Short | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

An artist creates a painting of the landscape he sees, then finds he can literally climb into the picture to see the fantastic world inside.

Director: Jacques Drouin
Cosmic Ray (1962)
Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

Experimental short uses Ray Charles' "What'd I Say" as accompaniment to constantly shifting collage of female nude, cartoons, and newsreels of atomic bomb explosions.

Director: Bruce Conner
Jumping (1984)
Animation | Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

A small child takes small leaps, which progress into huge bounds over buildings, forests and continents.

Director: Osamu Tezuka
Short | Animation | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

A rooster has his last biscuit for breakfast and goes grocery shopping. A pig prepares her breakfast (potato peelings, with the potatoes thrown in the trash) and discovers she needs more ... See full summary »

Directors: Amanda Forbis, Wendy Tilby
Neighbours (1952)
Animation | Short | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

A surreal story of two neighbours' destructive feud over a flower.

Director: Norman McLaren
Stars: Grant Munro, Jean Paul Ladouceur
Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

A pulsing, kaleidoscope of images set to an energetic soundtrack. A young women swings in a garden; a woman's face smiles. The rest is spinning cylinders, pistons, gears and turbines, ... See full summary »

Directors: Fernand Léger, Dudley Murphy
Stars: Fernand Léger, Dudley Murphy, Katherine Murphy
Documentary | Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

Stan Brakhage films the birth of his first child, Myrrena.

Director: Stan Brakhage
Stars: Jane Brakhage, Myrrena Brakhage, Stan Brakhage
Edit

Storyline

Snippets from discarded footage, and with footage shot on the streets of Montreal and New York City, combined to a collage with the underlying argument as to whether man is a complex machine or a creature with a soul.

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Documentary | Short

Edit

Details

Country:

Language:


Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

It is the film that made the most profound impact on young Lucas during the 60's. In Star Wars saga, 2187 is the cell number of Princess Leia and the ID of the traitor Storm Trooper, Finn. See more »

Connections

Referenced in THX 1138 (1971) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
"They become aware of some kind of force… behind this apparent mask… and they call it God"
21 May 2009 | by (Australia) – See all my reviews

If you've ever thought that the human race was a great thing, then you need to be taken down a peg or two. Why not try some Arthur Lipsett? '21-87 (1964)' might just be the bleakest, most pessimistic snapshot of society that I've ever seen, presenting the director's dissatisfaction with and even disdain for contemporary 1960s culture. A seemingly-random collage of urban footage, both scrapped from the archives of the National Film Board of Canada and photographed by Lipsett himself in Montreal and New York City, is mixed with an unrelated soundtrack that muses on the "importance" of religion in everyday life. The end result is to emphasise the emptiness, dehumanisation and alienation of modern man. Footage of a street performer imitating robot movement is followed by a robotic factory arm performing human chores; fashion models mechanically strut the catwalk with blank, impassive faces; middle-aged women browse shop windows, coveting superficial fashions forced upon them by greater society, rather than by their own independent minds.

Lipsett captures ugly, anonymous faces in the street. Each person seems to be lost in the chaos of living, disconnected from his fellow man, staring off into space at something that we do not see. Several spectators spot the camera filming them and gaze uncertainly at it; one man, coming up an escalator, raises a newspaper to obscure his face. These instances of self-awareness could easily have been edited out, but are instead given prominence. Lipsett's camera – and, thus, his film – is showing these people the mechanical emptiness of their everyday lives, but they're in denial, unwilling to exhibit their depravity for the impartial eye of the camera lens. One sequence perfectly encapsulates this distorted self-perception, as men and women playfully grin at warped reflections of themselves in a carnival mirror (one little girl apparently isn't fooled, and recoils tearfully from the grotesque image of herself). Cocteau's 'The Blood of a Poet (1930)' contends that only through the personal suffering of the artist can a beautiful work of art be created. If so, '21-87' is the suffering of its creator.


4 of 9 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Contribute to This Page