Motion Picture (1970)
- Summaries (1)
Motion Picture is an experimental film with and not about the Danish tennis player Torben Ulrich, who is merely credited as "Example". The film may be viewed as a study of the nature of the medium and more specifically of the phenomena of framing, movement, and synchronicity of sound and picture. The material consists of Ulrich training strokes against a wall, volleys at the net and serves, but also of strange enactments in which Ulrich runs towards the camera, arms and legs twitching, dances a crazy racket dance or fakes slow motion as he sits down at a table and pours a cup of tea. These are all studies of movement. At the same time, the framing is absolute: Ulrich moves in and out of the picture without any attempt by the camera to follow him, thus constantly emphasising the role of framing. The complex nature of film is indicated by Jørgen Leth's little appearances as a living clapperboard for synchronizing sound and image. Jørgen Leth and Ole John ran the film through the camera several takes to create a couple of doubly-exposed scenes, and the result is the mysterious perception of several Torben Ulrichs serving on top of one another almost as if in a choreographed dance. One last narrative element introduced several places in the film is very sparse subtitles, such as "table chair tea". At the premiere at the Carlton cinema Motion picture as shown before Francois Truffaut's L'enfant Savage.
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