Friday, May 25, 2012

Visual Aural World of Jean Detheux

I hate the term 'experimental' cinema, it has a bad connotation, for me at least. The term is too loose and too narrow at the same time. But I am at a stage where I feel more and more attracted to non-narrative films, searching for pure visual aural experience. I stumbled upon the work of Belgian computer artist (living in Montreal, Quebec) Jean Detheux. His computer generated abstract animations are best experienced alone in a dark room with a headphone set over your head. It's truly a hypnotic experience. The best example of his amazing work I recommend is 10 minute piece called "...lilac shrieks and scarlet bellowings..." It's a beautiful symphony of colors, music and human voices.

"...lilac shrieks and scarlet bellowings..."   (9 min 57 sec)

Here is another beautiful one with pianist Jean-Philippe Collard-Neven, music written by Steve Reich

NY Counterpoint   (11 min 34 sec)

Please be sure to check out his vimeo page

Breillat's Feminism

The Last Mistress (2007) - Breillat
I really dig Catherine Breillat's brand of feminism now. I don't know how much is actually adapted from its source novel by Jules Amédée Barbey d'Aurevilly, but The Last Mistress is quite opposite from other nineteenth century novels about suffering women in the rigid society. The film is a period piece about a married woman (Asia Argento) being seduced by a handsome young aristocat (Fu'ad Aït Aattou). Then she leaves her old husband, goes through a tumultuous relationship and ends up owning him like a slave.

Argento, at age 32 when the film was made, is a radiant beauty and magnetic force, opposite of Aattou's girly man. She struts around in various ethnic costumes, smoking, whipping, knifing, etc. Her husky voice and evil laughs have more seductive power than ever. The ending was kinda draggy and unfocused. But it's definitely a must for Argento fans.