Let Art Flourish, Let the World Perish: Morgan Fisher on Another Movie

another movie

Originally published in Cinema Scope 74, Spring 2018

For Morgan Fisher, Another Movie is anything but another movie. The result of a decades-long reconsideration of the art and persona of Bruce Conner, Fisher’s first new film in fifteen years attempts to reckon with a work of such time-honored merit that its mere existence feel courageous. Conner’s epochal debut A Movie (1958), a 12-minute montage of disaster-related found footage set to Ottorino Respighi’s Pines of Rome, simultaneously crystalized a genre and incited what is now recognized as the second generation of the postwar American avant-garde, which Fisher’s first decade of meta-materialist film work both epitomizes and deconstructs on a movie by movie, method by method basis. Continue reading

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Strange Geometry: The Films of Björn Kämmerer

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Originally published by Reverse Shot, January 19, 2016

It’s been 120 years since The Arrival of a Train at La Ciotat Station (1896), and it can feel more than a little redundant to note that one of cinema’s foremost capabilities lies in its freedom to manipulate perspective. That said, if one were to outline the chief innovations in modern filmmaking, they would likely situate around a number of advances made in the arena of visual proficiency—namely, in what viewers see and how they see it. As expertly as any artist of his generation, the German-born, Austria-based filmmaker Björn Kämmerer—subject of a nine-film program at the Museum of the Moving Image’s fifth annual First Look Festival—exemplifies the avant-garde’s fundamental interest in this phenomenon, in cinema’s unique ability to negotiate the complexities of optical intrigue. Utilizing the medium as a means to investigate material reality and the manner by which we conceive of the physical relationship between form and the spaces in which these figural manifestations reside, Kämmerer has, over ten years and as many films, established himself as one of Europe’s most exciting and formally economic young filmmakers. Continue reading