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Film

Montreal Film Goes Underground

Posted by Daniel / May 17, 2007

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The Summer movie season is upon us. Before you get swept away in a whirlwind of giant green ogres, transforming CD players and Keith Richards on a pirate ship, why not watch as a woman shoves pieces of a torn up pig heart into her--well, you know.

The film is Pig Heart (appropriate, huh) and it screens this weekend at the second edition of the Montreal Underground Film Festival. If nothing else, the fest provides a fertile ground for experimental films from around the world to be graced with an audience willing to open their minds to the overtly strange and transgressive. To say that some of these films are not for the faint of heart is an understatement, but among those that might make an average moviegoer squirm, are those that tiptoe into the poetic, often transcendent realm of Deren, Brakhage and Snow.

Colonnes Dans La Mer (directed by Nancy Baric and Nicolas Renaud) , is a hypnotic exercise in the mechanical properties inherent to cinema, and reminded me a bit of Michael Snow's Wavelength (the infamous zoom movie) on uppers.

Rooster, a film by Canada's resident cinematic weirdo/genius Guy Maddin, sees a continuation of his recent fascination with silent movies, as we root for a rooster and a damsel in distress as they try and make it work. A classic Hollywood love story by all means.

The festival's program is eclectic, alienating and at times just straight up raunchy as the programmers made sure to satisfy those with the most marginal of appetites. Alexis Boran's Doll-Like is a devastating look at what happens to barbie dolls when they misbehave--a film for masochists and junkies alike.

Jesika Joy's Strip Show manages to combine two of my favorite things into one extremely short film--food and nudity. However, watching the filmmaker strip down to her core, and manipulate a pile of cupcakes proved to be far more unsettling than erotic.

If exploring the darker, more adventurous alleys of filmmaking isn't quite your thing, it should be no reason to shy away from the festival altogether. There are more accessible events such as the Canadian premiere of the documentary King Of Punk where the audience can throw rice at the screen to voice their opinion about the current state of punk music. Democracy at its finest.

The festival is unique and ballsy and its whole DIY feel is a pleasant counterpoint to the film fests that will take over the city in the fall. Screenings are happening at the Friperie Pote:tr (6029 Parc). Click HERE for full details.

Discussion

10 Comments

Richard Owen / May 18, 2007 at 02:40 am
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I am going to loan Guy Maddin my tripod.

King of Punk, so who threw the rice the wrong way?!?
nancy / May 22, 2007 at 09:17 pm
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Thanks Daniel! Just to be mentioned in the same sentence with Michael Snow is an honor.
Nancy and Nicolas
nancy / May 22, 2007 at 09:17 pm
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Thanks Daniel! Just to be mentioned in the same sentence with Michael Snow is an honor.
Nancy and Nicolas
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