Sshtoorrty (2005, Michael Snow)

aka Short Story, but I much prefer the above title. I even prefer the title to the movie itself, though the movie is pretty cool too. A two-minute loop of a four-minute scene, the first and second halves playing at the same time, with neat overlapping of color and audio. The scene was hard-subtitled (dialogue in Farsi), so even the subtitles overlap. Then the scene repeats, presumably about 10 times, though my downloaded copy broke after about six. I thought that was sufficient. The set looks like the Presents set, with that staginess and simple color washes.



Writing about my films has sometimes discussed the ‘narrative’ aspect or ‘reading’ of some of my ‘pictorial’ nature, which is much more important. Reflecting on this, I realized that I have never wanted to make a purely narrative film, never had and therefore perhaps I should. Perhaps I should finally make a film that really tells a story. Thus ‘SSHTOORRTY’. … The film of the … scene was cut exactly in half and the two halves of sound and picture as super-imposed. This makes a simultaneity of actions that occurred ‘linearly’. Before and After become a Transparent Now. Arrival and Departure are united. It’s truly ‘filmic’, one transparent film over another.


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