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My blog: This Ought to be a Crime
Hey sorry I missed you after the screening. Megan and I loved your movie and agreed it was the best of the group without question. I was impressed at the perpetual deconstruction and reappropriation of the frame. It reminded me of Ernie Gehr, Pipilotti Rist and some others, but it never felt derivative. You are onto something and I'm looking forward to what's next. I have two questions. The first is what did you view as the film's ideological problems? The second is why Jean Eustache? Did he have a specific influence on this work or is it just because he's great?
Though it's been a long time, by my count, since I've seen it, glad you loved Gertrud. :)
It's challenging in that it's such a hermetically sealed world that's being created. Of course, it is based on a play, and the challenging thing is that Dreyer both embraces it and dismisses it at the same time. I know that Bordwell had a lot of trouble with it when he wrote his book on Dreyer (although he has, apparently, since revised his opinion, agreeing more with Rosenbaum).
Have you been reading the Bordwell book? How is it? I get what you're saying, though based on the mood of the film, I think to describe it as hermetically sealed suggests a more harshly, sharply bounded environment than it does. If anything, it's more as though the protagonist's are suspended in the depths of their memories, emotions and desires. It isn't the world which contains them, so much as themselves.
Nah, I am not reading the Bordwell book (took the easy route; just read Rosenbaum's review of it. hahaha). I like how you put it - there is this longing for something past, and for a new future, but since there is just SO MUCH PAST, they can never really get a hold on their lives as they are right now. It's very strange, and pretty brilliant.
Ah, gotcha (Haha.) I think I read, or browsed, that review awhile back as well. Would love to read it one of these days. | Yes, exactly. And from what I recall, I think this longing for the past is largely expressed by the men in the film, who wish to recapture or continue it. Gertrud, on the other hand, wants to break away from it but when none of her 'suitors' offers a suitable alternative, she resigns herself to her independence.
Just attended a Dorsky screening this week. Amazing work. Glad you were into them too. Was he in Austin?
Yeah, but I'll admit I had a hard time getting there. It wasn't until the fourth (and final) film that I finally kinda realized what he was about. And no, he wasn't here; but Benning was here when I saw Stemple Pass. And Linklater led the Q&A. Talk about fucking badass.
I heard about that! That's so incredible. Gabe Klinger (I think that's the correct spelling) is making a documentary on the two of them, which I can't wait to see. Luckily we got Dorsky for two days-- his Q&As were lovely, informative, and really cynical. In an endearing way. That guy rules.
I think one of my biggest thing with Dorsky's films was the editing patterns (and I mean that in a bad way); particularly with the first two (Compline and Pastourelle), I felt like I couldn't tell his reason for cutting when he did, other than that he simply...wanted to. I guess that's as good a reason as any, but I had a hard time finding a clear through-line in those films (It seemed as if he just had a lot of footage he shot, and he cut it together into a few movies without really thinking of a WHY). Now, I know that's VERY likely inaccurate, but that's one of the reasons I liked August and After and April quite a bit more: I felt that those two films actually had some theme they were sticking with. Oh well. I think that's all probably my own fault. Just glad I was able to see them at all, really. :)
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