Archive for Edinburgh College of Art

A Gentleman’s Gentleman

Posted in FILM, literature with tags , , , , on April 7, 2020 by dcairns

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Once again I’m inviting my students to comment on a film on MUBI — this time it’s Losey and Pinter’s THE SERVANT (from a novel by Robin Maugham). I only sprang this on them yesterday so I don’t know if they will.

QUITE an interesting piece of work, with some of the most marvelously louche casting, composition, design, music, performance and movement (of actors and camera). It’s the point where Losey’s films start to become real objets d’art.

I got very nostalgic for the era, one I never inhabited, though I note that the plumbing is always leaky.

I will be sticking posts up about this movie throughout the day, but this is the main one for general comments.

Higher Education

Posted in FILM, MUSIC with tags , , , , , , , on March 23, 2020 by dcairns

My first year film class is split up into little rooms and scattered over the globe from the US to China, I’m trying to get us all together to view and discuss a film on MUBI, a platform which is free to film students. I’ve chosen Claire Denis’ THE HIGH LIFE because I want to see it and haven’t gotten around to it yet. It ends its run on MUBI today, I believe.

Looks like you can GIFT a viewing of the film to a friend also if you watch it on MUBI.

So hopefully there’ll be a lively discussion in the comments section. First-time commenters will not see their remarks immediately, I have to clear you first, so don’t worry if it takes a little while.

I liked the film — like a lot of art films it’s equal parts beautiful, confusing, frustrating and disturbing. I was concerned that the science was junk but I googled it and there is some theoretical basis to the idea of harvesting energy from a rotating black hole. But I’m not going to be the first to try it.

The song at the end convinced me I really liked this.

If this works we’ll do it again. If not, I’ll try and work out improvements.

Obviously, regular Shadowplayers are more than welcome to chip in here too.

And here is another essential bit of Denis to play us out:

 

Back to Work

Posted in FILM with tags , , , , , , , on July 5, 2019 by dcairns

The tireless work of the labourer in cinema. Got back from Bologna on Monday and recorded Anne Billson, our celebrity cat-sitter, for a video essay we’re doing on an undisclosed subject. This is our first real collaboration, though we’ve talked a lot about doing a screenplay together. It’s for Masters of Cinema but that’s all I’m saying.

The following day I recorded a VO for another video essay for another company, Arrow Video, title also undisclosed, and the next day we began editing it.

Today there’s a screening of the graduation films from Edinburgh College of Art — many of which won firsts — so I’ll be at Filmhouse later.

With all this going on, I haven’t had time to watch any films apart from those the video essays deal with, so as you may have noticed, I have nothing to say.

Oh, if you have a Criterion Channel subscriptions, you can watch my two video interviews with the great Angela Allen, who talks about her work with John Huston, Tony Richardson, Roman Polanski and Ken Russell (all of them bad boys). Photographed by my longtime collaborator Jane Scanlan and edited by Stephen C. Horne.

The picture at top is not a clue.