July 2011, arsenal cinema

In Memory of Adolfas Mekas

HALLELUJAH THE HILLS, 1963

Recently we received the sad news that Adolfas Mekas has died at the age of 85 in New York. Mekas emigrated from Lithuania to the United States in 1949, where he and his brother Jonas Mekas founded the magazine Film Culture and the New York Filmmakers’ Coop in 1954 as one of their many ventures. From 1971 to 1994, he taught film at Bard College. In memory of Adolfas Mekas, we are showing his “slapstick poem” (Time Magazine) HALLELUJAH THE HILLS (1963), which is ostensibly about two men vying for the same women. A film that contains “a great scene in which a whole load of young girls are sitting on a tree like birds. An art film which makes fun of art films, pro-vides a variation on the films of the Nouvelle Vague, quotes a scene from D.W. Griffith’s Way Down West almost word for word, and is at times reminiscent of both Our Gang and the Laurel and Hardy films.” (Detlef Kuhlbrodt)(July 29).