sketchbook: spacebar protecting me from the computer demons/ what I want film critics to tell me
sketchbook: spacebar protecting me from the computer demons while I edit my film, a photo by Nor Art Germs on Flickr.
Another beautiful day outside and my entire body is buzzing from computer-overexposure because I…must…get this new film edit…right…
Thank goodness for kitties, especially this little fuzzball I call Spacebar: something about her physical purr seems to offset the discomfiting electrified buzzing effect the computer has on me. I’d so much rather be running around on high hills in bare feet, but I suppose this “discomfiting” is a small price to pay for the chance to wield the colors and rhythms of my Weltanschauung on the world.
Which reminds me: “discomfiting”: film critics and academics, please stop overusing this word as a substitute for “complex”, “subversive”, or just plain “good”. It seems to have become, I’ve observed in my film studies at Columbia University, a requirement of contemporary art-house cinema to be somehow describable as “complex”, “subversive”, “discomfiting.” If, as I’ve observed, it is not even possible for a film to be accepted as a Film Worth Discussing unless it can be described as “complex”, “subversive”, “discomfiting”, then continuing to use these words without further elaboration is like again and again emphasizing that a recipe for apple pie will produce an end result that is “full of fruit” and “sweet” and “good for a dessert course”. Whereas when I’m looking for apple pie recipes to follow (doesn’t happen to me too often, as I don’t eat sugar or gluten or dairy…) I’m much more interested in what kind of fruit exactly? Which apples? Tiny bitter crabapples? Pink ladies? Some of both? Sliced superthin? Seasonal/local? With some rhubarb mixed in? And a few minced mint leaves? (I just invented that, but it sounds good, no? I was once a personal chef… raw foods though…) And what kind of sweet? One that is gentle and smooth and clashes deliciously with a slightly salty crust? And what kind of meal might this apple pie do best to round off, or should it be eaten on its own as an afternoon tea sort of indulgence?
This is what I want film critics to tell me: (especially about my own films! in the future… )
1) “full of fruit”…. What went into the film: talent (crab/pink ladies), techniques (sliced superthin), circumstances of production (seasonal/local).
Intertextuality is increasingly, at least in my films, integral diegesis, and must be parsed.
2) “sweet”…. What subjective experience they had while watching the film–did it make them want to call their mother and thank her for everything? did it make them slowly inch away from their movie date, suddenly mysophobic? The full film-digesting experience of one human is much more valuable to me (something I can learn from, for my future films) than vague guesses at the experiences of many.
3) “dessert”…. Who would you recommend see this film, and under what circumstances? Is it a film you wish high-powered politicians would watch alone at 2 am in the middle of a desperate drinking binge? Do you think this film, viewed under such circumstances, could somehow influence public policy? What are the possible functions this film could have in society? On an individual? What does it teach? What questions does it leave lingering in the viewer’s mind if he consumes it on an empty stomach?
Ok enough pie metaphors for now (I remind myself of a ladyfriend I tried to woo once, who kept using strange pie metaphors to basically say she was bisexual and polyamorous but on a diet…) I return to my editing my next feature, AND IN HER IT DANCED: AN INHERITANCE !