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116 Ratings

Capitalism: Child Labor

Directed by Ken Jacobs
United States, 2006
Short, Avant-Garde


Jolting in every sense of the word, this short masterwork flickers between stereographic cards depicting Victorian-era child laborers, creating a portrait of standardized horrors, endlessly reproduced.

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Capitalism: Child Labor Directed by Ken Jacobs
Jacobs—who has made a multitude of films that could’ve fit into the Oberhausen selection—was represented by Capitalism: Child Labor(2006) and Opening the 19th Century: 1896 (1990), both of which demonstrate his extraordinary ability to fuse the most challenging, visually stimulating perceptual experiments with an impassioned political and historical engagement.
September 02, 2015
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Ken Jacobs’s Capitalism: Child Labor shows in repeated succession two frames of a single image in phase2—through the image-phase, a surprisingly effective illusion of receding space caused by a temporal variation, reminding us that cinema is not and never was an art of space, but is and always has been one of time, and perhaps the best way to access and manipulate cinema’s spatial possibilities is to do so through this time.
June 09, 2015
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Capitalism: Child Labor is probably one of Jacobs’ most significant works of the young century, and undoubtedly among his finest films since moving exclusively into digital filmmaking… Jacobs’ uses this most basic 3D material—a single stereoscope card—to generate a 15-minute work that occupies a turf somewhere between melodrama and horror film.
May 11, 2015
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