Saturday, October 29, 2011


This week we looked an a few films; Hamburg, Blinkety Blank, Frank Film, and American Time Capsule.
HAMBURG was a German language film about the city of Hamburg Germany, meant to go with a German language study guide. Originally in color, there are lots of shots of pink buildings and people over a breezy narration about 1970's Hamburg Germany. Focused on the demographic and cultural aspects of the city. Might be a good starting point for a comparison to present day Hamburg. Organized, all in focus tourism board footage.
BINKETY BLANK This was one of the hand drawn (scratched) films completed in the 1960's by Norman MacLaren of the National Film Board of Canada. Done with an original score it begins as an abstract response to the music which is experimental but not narrative or melodic. As the short film progresses it becomes more literal and narrative and almost whimsical as only a National Film Board of Canada film can be. No edginess. In the end everything turns out OK.
FRANK FILM by Frank Mouris is sort of a failed project film that chronicles Mouris's childhood and experiences with consumer culture through his collection of images. Impessive because it was made before digital image storage and retrieval. Everything is collaged and animated on an optical printer. It represents a bath of images which wash over you as his voice narrates a multi-track version of his biography to date. Funny and powerful at the same time.
AMERICAN TIME CAPSULE -By Chuck Braverman. This film first appeared on the Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour which aired in the early 70's. It attempts to represent 200 years of American history in 2 minutes and 43 seconds. It is set to a jazz-like drum solo. It seems a bit heavy on the civil war an light on the 60's. Impressive for the same reason that FRANK FILM was. An intensive research and animation project long before Ken Burns ever rolled film.

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