Week 19/2023

This week’s selection brings the power of imagination and dreams into play. Given that cinema leaves very few senses understimulated, how does cinema create space for the viewer’s imagination in parallel to the film unfolding on the screen?

The week begins with new works by Makino Takashi presented at Art Cinema OFFoff, followed by an online conversation with the filmmaker. In Takashi’s films, images become unintelligible through the layering of different materials, thus creating new images. “I don’t believe the images we have in our imagination and in our brain are so clear,” he argues, “it’s something very complicated… like dust, that sometimes looks like an image, but it’s actually not one. […] I think we have a complicated set of beautiful images in our brain. So I’m trying to approach that kind of image.”

Next up is La Jetée (1962) at Cinema RITCS: Chris Marker’s renowned science fiction featurette. The film exists solely of black and white still images accompanied by a scientifical voice-over that tells a story of Paris after World War III. Although set in the future, its strength is found in remembrance and imagination: thinking of a woman smiling and a man dying, imagining the movement of the photos. In this act of remembering, we almost forget that we are looking at endless copies – 24 frames per second – of the same image. The screening will be preceded by a presentation of philosopher Lieven De Cauter and his students.

Lastly, Godard’s sci-fi film Alphaville (1965) will be shown at CINEMATEK. Set in the year 2000, the film is famous for not using any special props and for being shot on location in Paris. In Alphaville,  materials of the present are transformed into that of the future, creating a perfect example of how our image of the future is just a re-imagining of the present.

This Week