The Venice Film Festival posted 70-ish short films online to commemorate their 70th anniversary. I watched them gradually over the past year. These are the ones I especially liked. Least favorites are here and the rest here.
Shinya Tsukamoto – Abandoned Monster
A giant robot vs giant monster film that handily beats Pacific Rim, co-directed by a kid (his son?)
Athina Rachel Tsangari – 24 Frames Per Century
Two film projectors on an island aim picture over the ocean, running only a frame per few seconds, and as the reel runs out a woman appears to insert the new one and switch over.
Paul wears a harness of cameras pointing at himself, walks the city giving a monologue about cinema which is worth transcribing in full.
Paul Schrader on the High Line, May 29th, 2013. When I first came into the film business it was a time of crisis. Society was in upheaval. There was a drug revolution, sex revolution, gay rights, women’s rights, civil rights, anti-establishment, and the times required new heroes, new themes for movies, and we had about fifteen years of interesting film. Motion pictures are again in a time of crisis – only today it is a crisis of form, not a crisis of content. We don’t know quite what movies are. We don’t know how long they are. We don’t know how you see them, where you see them, how you pay for them. Feels more like 1913 than 2013. Everything is being made up on the fly. The idea of filmed entertainment is undergoing a systematic change. Every week brings another change. No one knows for sure what it’ll be like. It won’t be a projected image in a dark room in front of an audience – that’s 20th century. I also know that content is character, story, theme. Form is delivery systems. Content is the wine and form is the bottle. There is no content without form. There is no wine without the bottle. When the form is changing, content can’t stabilize. You can’t make a revolutionary film in the middle of a revolution. My concern is that this period of transition we’re going through may not in fact be a transition at all, but a new status of permanent technological change, which never stabilizes, will never resolve itself to the point where content can again reign supreme.
A proper drama with full credits. Two girls have a pistol duel.
Young goat herder is watching movie on his phone that starred older goat herder many years ago – presumably something by Vittorio De Seta, since the short was dedicated to him.
Hilariously self-deprecating – a café monologue about cinema’s ties to money and power is interrupted by some kids on their way to see a movie, but not the new Breillat because “I want something light, not to have to think.”
Two photographs taken minutes before new popes were announced, while a woman tells a story of her absent mother who sent her a letter. “I keep you inside of me, like a film I watch and watch without ever tiring.”
Laughing kid directs a remake of The Sprinkler Sprinkled.
Hilarious digital representation of “the death of cinema”
Ironic piece about people engrossed in their portable devices – one girl watches a video about people on the street failing to notice some tragedy, ponders the video while walking right past another tragedy everyone is failing to notice.
Franco Maresco – The Last Lion
Hammy gangster type sings happy birthday to the festival in front of a giant cake and two silent twins, then devours the golden lion cake topper.
Close-up split-screen faces of people dreaming movies (with sfx)
Ulrich Seidl – Hakuna Matata
Three guys say “Hakuna Matata” mantra-like, four times. Then three guys in a different setting, standing together in the same way, same action. Finally two of the original guys sweeping the floor. I have no idea what it means but I liked it.