Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Metamorphose into Mediocrity

The Metamorphosis by Franz Kafka (2012) - The Quays
I understand embracing video technology by artists have strong visual aesthetics. It's cheaper, easier, less time consuming, etc. For me, Lynch's Inland Empire was a major disappointment. His strong suit has always been painstakingly planned mise-en-scene and breathtakingly beautiful cinematography. Even more visual emphasis should be put on when we talk about the world of The Brothers Quay. Obviously, beauty of the Quay films had almost entirely relied upon the intricacy in their stop-motion animation trained craft. After their stint with a DSLR camera last year with On Deciphering the Pharmacist's Prescription for Lip-Reading Puppets. And this time, they are taking on Kafka's The Metamorphosis. One would think this is a perfect marriage. And what a missed opportunity it is- minimal effort, muddy images, lazy realization, this version of Metamorphosis looks like a half-assed High School video project. But it's KAFKA! Even if it was just a commissioned easy money project, how can they justify the quality of this dreadful work?  How can a conscientious artist not look at their work objectively, side by side, with something marvelous like Streets of Crocodiles and say wow, this is unacceptable!

Only saving grace of this screening was music of Leoš Janáček live accompaniment by pianist Mikhail Rudy. But what a major disappointment!