Experimental Cinema

Today we watched:

Diary of a Shinjuku Thief, dir. Oshima Nagisa, 1968  (excerpt)

My Crushed Right Eye, dir. Matsumoto Toshio, 1968 (3 screen projection)

Great Society, dir. Oe Masanori and Marvin Fishman, 1967 (six screen projection)

Shiki Soku Ze Ku, dir. Matsumoto Toshio, 1974

2 Responses to “Experimental Cinema”

  1. Peace Park Says:

    It was so weird, because at roughly the same time, it was avant-garde week in my film theory class as well. I’m not really a fan of experimental film to be honest. But I did enjoy these films way much more so than the Stan Brakhage film that we had to watch in Film theory. It was sort of like a documentary (but no narration nor any sound at all) showing a Morgue and it was absolutely horrible and disgusting. We had to watch naked dead people’s groins and even worse came when they started doing autopsies. Guts and brains of real dead people, eer, so appalling. Anyways, compared to that, the films we watched in this class were way more tolerable. I actually quite liked Shiki Soki Ze Ku. The other films with the split screen were just too confusing for me, but I loved the funky music and the flashy colour sensations of Shiki Soku ze ku. I’m not sure if i had reached the final stage of enlightenment but I think I was definately on the way to it in some sort of trance. lol. I dunno, there was something about staring at flashy colours that sort of makes you feel dopey and hypnotic.

  2. Jason Kiang Says:

    I sort of found the multi-screen projection films to be really rather interesting, I liked it a lot, you as the spectator gets to choose which image/meaning to follow. It reminds me a lot of “Citizen Kane” by Orson Welles, with the use of deep focus, you get to choose what to look at, has excellent repeat value. I find the most interesting one was the guy dressing up as a woman, the transitions between screens and the addition of other images was really well done, you get to identify with the character. This form of media maybe confusing to view, but you get to see and follow whichever your eyes/mind chooses, everyone sees things differently in this case. It is like a multi-narrative in the film, so many meanings being shown at the same time.

    As for the enlightenment film, I found it rather interesting with the calligraphy and the use of colours. Wasn’t sure if I reached the stage of enlightenment yet though ahha. But I definitely get the message that you have to be absorbed into it and perhaps have the feeling of ascension (probably the wrong word choice). I guess it is supposed to put you into a mode of meditation, I went to this session held by Doctor Brian Weiss at the Toronto Convention Center, he did various exercises of relaxation and meditation, being able to view your past lives and stuff. I think it could relate to this in the idea of pure relaxation and becoming absorbed to reach that mode of meditation. He wrote a really inspiring book called “Many Lives Many Masters”. If anyone is further interested in the past lives and stuff, check it out.

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