Friday, 17 June 2011

Addendum: Long Live the New Flesh

A friend, colleague, and fellow film enthusiast has uploaded a neat little project he directed for part of his stint over at York University. In regards to my spiel about film moving into the digital age, I think this is a great specimen to tease out a particular point.

Soulmates from Bernard Books on Vimeo.

The three main facets of a film are production, exhibition, and distribution. There are of course many other elements and subsections that are necessary to have a functioning piece of art (who could neglect the finer points of financing and raising funds, etc.), but academia and writings surrounding the study of film can agree on this basic Holy Trinity of getting something seen. It is an interesting time and place for cinema, and especially that of the avant-garde variety. Take Alec McKay's Soulmates as an example: Shot on 16mm, the 'film' (and a film we can indeed call it) hearkens back to projects of past. Take a look at it and one is reminded not only of the otherworldly fusions of David Lynch's Eraserhead (shot on 16mm industrial film over a span of upwards of 5 years), but also the cyberpunk New World of Shinya Tsukamoto's Tetsuo: The Iron Man. The sound is non-diegetic, adding a layer of this 'otherworldliness,' but the most important element of its fusion into this current day of digital formatting is in both its distribution and exhibition.

Perhaps McKay will screen his piece on a bona fide projector in a small makeshift auditorium for likeminded artists (I'm thinking of the galleries that cropped up in New York during the 1920s), but for now he is able to reach a mass audience via Vimeo. There is a lot to be said about this avenue of distribution (I too have used its services to screen some of my projects), but right here and right now it is essential to see the cohesion between the worlds of analogue and digital: We have an experimental piece completely shot on film and transferred from the negative via a telecine process, and shown to the masses from the comfort of their own home. I hope to spark a debate, for I think this is the now, the future, and the right way to do things. Online videos are progressively moving further and further away from stereotypical notion of 'viral' and becoming the movies themselves. I am also attaching something similar one Brad Brisco did for his Visual Arts class. It pertains to this post, and it's also awesome.

Flight from Brad Brisco on Vimeo.

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