Finally. For me there is a fruitful match between the subject and object, director and architecture, in this film that for me was utterly lacking in the Sullivan, less lacking in the Maillert. The felicities of his vision, usually working around echoing and rhythms of lines had plenty to work with here. And the contingent, arbitrary nature of the two visions hummed, almost becoming revelatory of their take on life.
I could imagine to like the director’s work if he would’ve picked another architect. But as an architecture lover, these buildings are the farest it can get from my personal taste. First I thought the dutch tilts expressed the dislike of the buildings by the director. Showing only static images and a nice stereo (binoral?) soundscape could work great, but after 10min I was really done with it.
The architecture is this “entry” holds almost no appeal to me personally, and the static Dutch angles grew annoying, but, if you’re someone who really loves the “look” of film, these shots are expertly exposed for shadow and highlight retention, with the lensing meticulously dialed. The transfer is also of very high quality. So, I found myself appreciating the medium of film— itself— more than anything in this film.
In the few instances where the skewed camera angles align and complement the angles of the structure, this film achieves the level of art it grasps for. Unfortunately, in most cases the camera work fails utterly and we know no more about the structure then when we started. Possibly less. Another disappointment by Emigholz.
Imagine the horror of the home owners in watching Emigholtz approaching their houses from bizarre angles and zeroing in on the flaws. As for Goff, there was a lot of creativity, but often too much ornamentation, which pushes them into the realm of kitsch. His stuff worked better on a grander scale. Overall, I think both the director and the architect are guilty of self-indulgence.
Emigholz's later 'architecture-coffee-table-book' films may not be for everyone but I like them as a premise for post-human cinema. I met Emigholz once years ago at the Goethe Institut and after talking to him felt as if I knew less about the intention behind the later films. The attribution of 'meaning' is entirely up to you.