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  • The House Is Black

    The House Is Black

    ★★★★½

    "Forough’s voice was the first disembodied female voice in an Iranian film. The opposite, of course, was common practice: women were bodies without voices. For Forough, however, the point wasn’t to just show bodies, not even to show just bodies, but to show bodies justly. "

    I wrote about The House is Black and the moral vision with which Forough treats bodies, predicting the accomplishments of Pedro Costa in In Vanda’s Room decades later. You can read the full piece here:

    On Bodies: The House Is Black and the Politics of Corporeal Representation(s)

  • Satantango

    Satantango

    "Tarr’s cinema at its best, as in his newly restored 1994 magnum opus, Sátántangó, transcends the notion of an observational cinema... Observation is the work of the scholar, the anthropologist, the scientist. Yet, watching a Tarr film isn’t an intellectual exercise, as much as it is a bodily exercise."

    I wrote about cinephilia and the sensory/bodily pleasures of viewing Tarr’s Sátántangó for photogénie's dossier on long films, “The Eye of Time.” You can read my piece here:
    Ways of Seeing: Sátántangó and Records of a Cinephilic Encounter

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  • The Red Shoes

    The Red Shoes

    ★★★★★

    It’s like a kinky gay vampire porn that has a lot of choking (my girlfriend)
    The characters seem to walk out of paintings. 
    A film about ppl who live in an opera of their own making. 
    “A war between me and the audience.” 
    What’s that robe? Is he slitheren? (Gf)
    She’s like a Christmas tree or sth (gf)
    A dance of images, in both the forms within them and the assemblage of them next to one another.
    Compare this to…

  • Waiting

    Waiting

    ★★★★

    Like a de Chirico painting set to motion, this is more of a nightmarish remembrance than a realistic representation of the Iranian South in the vein of Naderi’s other films in the region (Harmonica, The Runner etc.) The sound design (or lack thereof) is responsible for much of the eeriness but so are the religious mourning ceremonies and the stylized movements (of the actors, the camera, and especially the hands), as well as a constant sense of disorientation peculiar to dreams. 
    Naderi’s best from what I’ve seen, and one of the most successful films in recreation of childhood memories.

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