Showing posts from December, 2017

(Ap)prendre le temps ? Il faut savourer l'ennui (France Culture)

Il faut savourer l'ennui (Conférences France Culture; 26 dec 2017) 57' Mardi des Bernardins du 14 juin 2016 au Collège des Bernardins ( Vimeo ) « Notre territoire s’élargit, notre calendrier rétrécit ; l’horizon recule, la profondeur s’annule ; et les nouvelles générations circulent sur le Web plus facilement que dans la chronologie » Régis Debray, Modernes catacombes, 2013 (Ap)prendre le temps ? - Les mardis des Bernardins from Collège des Bernardins on Vimeo . Travail de mémoire, dictature de l’instant, présent omniprésent ou présentisme… La terminologie du temps s’étend à l’infini. Question de vitesse ou de rythme, d’accélération du temps ou d’essor de l’urgence… à quoi fait-on référence ? Où sont passés les chaînons de la continuité ? Comment réintroduire du temps long notamment dans le temps médiatique ? Peut-on aménager le temps comme on aménage l’espace ? Alors que sous le nom de présent, le contemporain tend à devenir un impératif social et politique, l

Desert Films (Gala Hernández)

From the Best Video Essay of 2017 list in Sight & Sound (dec 2017) : Films desiertos: por una geopoética del desierto cinematográfico  (6'04")  Gala Hernández Films desiertos: por una geopoética del desierto cinematográfico from Gala Hernández on Vimeo .  Contemplative Films cited (in order): Gerry (Gus Van Sant, 2002) Freedom (Sharunas Bartas, 2000) El Cant dels Ocells (Albert Serra, 2008) La Région Centrale (Michael Snow, 1971) Proximity (Inger Lise Hansen, 2006) Cobra Mist (Emily Richardson, 2008) BNSF (James Benning, 2013) Fata Morgana (Werner Herzog, 1971) Desert (Stan Brakhage, 1976) Chott-el-Djerid: a portrait in light and heat (Bill Viola, 1979)

Béla Tarr & Agnes Hranitzky (videos)

6 years already since a Bela Tarr & Agnes Hranitzky film, and Tarr already said in 2008 that The Turin Horse  (2011) would be his LAST film (and there is no reason not to believe him, he really hates it when people ask him to make another film). Recently he made an exhibition titled " Till the End of The World " at the Eye filmmuseum in Amsterdam (21 january - 7 may 2017). Anybody visited this exhibition??? A Glimpse of the exhibition in this video . I made two mistakes on this blog by calling him Tarr Béla because that's how names are presented in Hungary. What I didn't know is that he prefers his "westernized" name (firstname first, family name last) because it gives him an international stature, to escape his hungariano-centric culture. The second mistake was to exclude Agnes Hranitzky from the authorship of their work, as Bela Tarr prefers to present it, as a team job. A homage to one of the greatest filmmakers of all time, and THE masters of Con

Contemplative Spectatorship (Zen)

"Ensō" (=Circle in Japanese, Emptiness in Zen) This thread is for all the Zen proverbs and aphorisms relating to the Contemplative Cinema, its making or its spectatorship. How to be a contemplative viewer? I will post them in this place, in the comment section, as I find them. Feel free to post your own findings in the comments, or to comment your favourites.

Wang Bing (France Culture 2017)

Wang Bing : "(...) J'ai effectivement vu son documentaire [ Chung kuo - cina / La Chine , d'Antonioni, 1972]. Je l'ai vu une première fois, j'en ai vu une partie quand j'étais à l'académie du cinéma de Pékin. Et puis en 2012, j'ai revue une copie film et je peux dire qu'il a eu une certaine influence sur moi. Je me souviens que quand j'étais en train de faire le montage d' A l'Ouest des Rails [2003], y'a eu certain passages de mon film je n'étais pas sûr de moi, il y a eu certaines hésitations. Et je me souviens être allé aux archives du film de Pékin pour revoir ce documentaire d'Antonioni. Après avoir vu ce film, je me suis dis que ce que j'avais monté instinctivement était juste. (...) Pour moi faire du cinéma c'est un mode de vie, c'est quelque chose qui fait parti de ma vie. Et puis par l'intermédiaire du cinéma ça m'aide à voir les gens, à les comprendre, à comprendre leur vie. Je suis aussi tout s

Angel's Egg (1985/Oshii)

Pre-credit sequence (shot for shot; 5min48s) : Two hands in close up, one vanishes, the other one clench its fist. A translucent egg mounted on a wire pedestal, against dark clouds. Close up of the bird's eye that was inside the egg. The eyelashes twitch. Medium shot of the Man carrying a weapon on his shoulder, against a red sky with mechanical machinery behind him. Panning laterally over an empty sky with red clouds. Static shot of mechanical machinery pointing all toward the top right corner. Panning vertically over an empty sky with red clouds until an eyeball-looking spaceship slowly descends in the frame. Rows and rows of statuesque bodies standing on the surface of the ship. Close up a row of statues. Organ pipes steam machinery in a canted angle. Close up of the pipes blowing steam. Wide shot of the ship landing on the sea, with the Man turning his back to us watching it in the middle ground. Mechanical machinery in the foreground. As the landing disperses

Scholarly Contemplative Cinema

Here are some books, magazines or PhD thesis on slow cinema/contemplative cinema available online (latest addition to the Bibliography page ): “ Nocturnal Fabulations: Ecology, Vitality and Opacity in the Cinema of Apichatpong Weerasethakul ” (Érik Bordeleau, Toni Pape, Ronald Rose-Antoinette, Adam Szymanski; 2017) “ Cierta tendencia (nostálgica) del slow cinema ” (Horacio Muñoz Fernández; 2017) “ Speeding Slowness: Neo-Modern Contemplative and Sublime Cinema Aesthetics in Godfrey Reggio’s Qatsi Trilogy ” (Boczkowska Kornelia; 2016) “ Mexican Minimalist Cinema:Articulating the (Trans)national ” (Bolesław Racięski, 2016) “ Het dwaallicht vertaald naar Slow Cinema -De wandelaar in hedendaagse langspeelfilm ”  (Anne Verbeure; 2015) on Lav Diaz, Albert Serra, Jia Zhangke, Lisandro Alonso “ As Slow as Possible: An Enquiry Into the Redeeming Power of Boredom for Slow Film Viewers ” (Jakob Boer; 22 January 2015) “ Leave to live? Placeless people in contemporary Hungarian and Romanian

Makala (2017/Emmanuel Gras)

Opening sequence: The back of a man walking across a village, carrying one tool on each shoulder. The camera follows him, staring at his nape like a Dardenne film. His body shakes at each step, moving up and down. We only see the tool handles hanging in his back. The camera overtakes her subject and pans to the right to show his profile. We discover his face, closed, focused on walking, and the end of one of the tools. It's an axe, which blade is hooked around his shoulder. A voice off screen says "Hello, you're already awake?" This must be quite early in the morning. And the camera pans towards this villager after seeing the face of our protagonist lighten up, the camera pans back toward the path he's walking on. The film cuts several times during the progression through the bushes, pasting together several stages of this journey. Until he arrives at the foot of a big tree. The camera contemplates the summit of the foliage. Off screen we hear the impa

Teaching Jeanne Dielman (The Cine-Files)

"I’ve taught Jeanne Dielman, 23 Quai du Commerce, 1080 Bruxelles (Chantal Akerman, 1975), nearly every year for twenty-five years. (...) Its sounds are sparing and punctual; you can also hear your neighbor’s fidgeting. It thus challenges what a movie is to look at and listen to, what cinema is as a way of bestowing attention. Like other time-based arts, Jeanne Dielman depends on rhythm; for a long time after watching it, I feel as if I am moving to a metronome. (...) Student responses have led me to realize that the patient, forgiving gaze that the film solicits is as filial as it is feminist. (...) Jeanne Dielman can make a formalist out of anyone, and it is a great lesson for would-be filmmakers about how setting limits can inspire one’s best work. (...) Jeanne Dielman has 223 shots averaging close to one minute each. (...) There are two pieces I assign whatever the course: Janet Bergstrom’s influential essay on Jeanne Dielman, written “for the Camera Obscura collective” and pu

NYT's 25 Best Movies of the 21st Century

Amongst  the New York Times' 25 Best Movies of the 21st Century  are : A Touch of Sin (Jia Zhangke) Silent Light (Reygadas) Three Times (HHH) Timbuktu (Sissako) Wendy and Lucy (Reichardt) 5 Contemplative films out of 25, that's 20% of the best of the century (so far).  Not bad for a mainstream journal that publishes Dan Kois ( the bored philistine ).


Fireflies is a print magazine, a beautifully crafted book, published between Berlin and Melbourne by founders Annabel Brady-Brown and Giovanni Marchini Camia: (...) Each issue assembles an international group of writers and visual artists to celebrate the work of two extraordinary filmmakers through personal essays, interviews and creative responses. (...) We print responses to cinema that are personal, daring and that wouldn’t necessarily be found in other film journals­: short fiction, visual art, poetry, memoir, comics, and creative non-fiction that experiments with multiple forms. (...) What is interesting to Unspoken Cinema is the filmmakers they chose, always by pair, are familiar with the list of CCC filmmakers : Issue #1 : Pasolini / Apichatpong Weerasethakul  (out of print) Issue #2 : Kiarostami / Tarr  (out of print) Issue #3 : Claire Denis / Jia Zhangke Issue #4 : Pedro Costa / Ben Rivers Issue #5 : Angela Schanelec / Agnès Varda

The Art(s) of Slow Cinema

Here is a website (the only one) dedicated to "Slow films": The Art(s) of Slow Cinema "(...) Slow Cinema, a limited, and hence debated term, has become the catch word of the last decade. It is often characterised by the use of long-takes, little use of dialogue and/or music, the use of non-professional actors playing empty and/or lonely characters, and – in some cases – by the sheer description of “this is boring”. To me, Slow Cinema is more an experiential film form. Finding a definition is exceptionally difficult. This is perhaps mostly because “slow” is relative, so Slow Cinema is relative, too. What slow means to one person, may in fact be fast to another. I’m now very used to slow films. It is difficult for me to still see the slowness in there. For me, it has become “normal”.(...)" Nadin Mai, the author of this great website, did her PhD thesis on "Slow Cinema" in 2015:   The representation of absence and duration in the post-trauma cinema

HarryTuttle is back

After a long and slow hiatus (my last post was 30 of september 2014), I am back in action to update this blog again. I had to take a break to focus on my mental health. This has been longer than expected but then again I thought I never return to this blog. HarryTuttle is now Benoit Rouilly, my identity in real life. I guess I don't need a nom de plume anymore. I will be admin of this blog under this new name, so don't be surprise to see a different signature to my blogposts. I am ready to start again the activity on this blog and pursue the defense of Contemporary Contemplative Cinema. A lot has happened since I was gone, but most importantly CCC filmmakers have continued to make contemplative films according to their unique style and this despite the big debate against "Slow Cinema" (which is another broader family we will talk  about in greater depth later). The comments on this blog are open again like before. So feel free to leave your suggestions and reco