Tuesday, September 1, 2009

The Brothers Quay, Day 2

The Brothers Quay taught a class entitled ANIMATED FILM wherein we viewed a number of films, primarily from former soviet states.

"The puppet is not dead, it's just still."

(This conversation reminds me of Graham Parkes' work on rock gardens. But it also reminds me of that William James essay What Makes a Life Significant? where he asks if it is not we who are the cold, dead, clods for not seeing.)

"Can the object hold that imagination, the stimmel which leads us to another plane? When we choose the elements... we're drawn to the organic... you realize there is an explosion of life, we're abducting the organic - we choose a palette like a painter."

We are suggested to look at Kleist's On a Marionette Theatre, should a marionette have human qualities? Also, The Uncanny Valley is mentioned, thus we must review Freud's The Uncanny as well as Jentsch's The Psychology of the Uncanny and of course Hoffmann's The Sandman.

We then viewed Jan Svenkmayer's A Game with Stones:

Your eyes aren't as fast as the stone. Stones can kiss as softly as people.

We then viewed Svankmayer's Historia Naturae:

We then began watching some films from Walerian Borowczyk,
Les Jeux des Anges (1/2):


and then Renaissance:

These films show just how significant the soundrtack is: the more ambiguous the image, the more present the soundtrack must be.

We then began viewing a section of their Institute Benjamenta (oddly enough, this scene is available at youtube):

In this scene they were hoping for a musicalization of space.

We then watched their adaptation of the Epic of Gilgamesh, This Unnameable Little Broom:

To create a limitless space, sound and camera angles were used; but it was also limiting
Putting Gilgamesh on a tricycle or Enkidu flying were in part chosen because puppets fall down.

We watched Borowczyk's Une Collection Particulaire; and that was one of the most memorable experiences I had at EGS.

We followed that with the chase scene from Buster Keaton's Seven Chances:

We then watched Alexander Alexieff and Claire Parker's gorgeous Le Nez:


These are also the folks that created the opening sequence for Orson Welles' The Trial

How do they do it?

We then watched the last scene of Fred Astaire's The Band Wagon:

We also viewed some of Astaire and Cyd Charisse in Silk Stockings (here is the trailer):


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