"Tu te souviens comme tu avais pleuré en découvrant que deux images ensemble pouvaient prendre sens ? Aujourd’hui, la télévision inonde le monde entier d’images dépourvues de sens, et personne ne pleure..." Brilliant film, I've since been imagining Chris Marker and Moondog in Times Square hearing the announcement of Stalin's death.
It is very hard to just say a few words about an important film by the most creative documentary film maker that ever lived, Chris Marker. This film is of great interest to anyone interested in Soviet history or cinema, but like any of Marker's "documentaries", It is so much more, it sends me running to look up historical notes and see films he references; I've seen HAPPINESS, now I must see all of Medvedkin's work!
it takes the firm mind of a Marker to show how fictional images and fake constructed documents contaminate our image of history; how carefully built context precedes and massively determines the meaning of "autonomous" events (like those Queen lyrics, which change meaning when put in German by Laibach, showing the way a historical context can make the same text cover in a dramatically different ideological coccoon,
Marker is right on target when he says that the ideal of a better world died with the U.S.S.R. even though that nation had long since become dystopian. Somewhat like Godard, Marker is a champion of filmmakers: sometimes I felt as if history was only something that helped or harmed men like Vertov and Medvedkin. Nonetheless, it's a stunning kaleidoscope of images and ideas, and yes the cat is adorable as all getout.
A fascinating montage documentary with Soviet filmmaker Alexandr Medvedkin in the center of an expose of the cinematic apparatus as 'shadow of the kingdom' in the middle of the 'kingdom of the shadows' which was the years of Russian history from 1900 to 1989. -- PolarisDiB