december 2021, arsenal cinema

The Depths of the Uncanny - Films by Dario Argento and David Lynch

Horror and beauty, dark abysses and rooms of shimmering color, destructive violence and sensual visual discoveries: such seeming oppositions become inextricably linked in the cinematic worlds of Dario Argento (*1940) and David Lynch (*1946). The works of both directors plumb the unfathomable depths of the human psyche, finding piercing, universal images for individual traumas, obsessions, and states of mental emergency that are at once disturbing and touching.

Both Argento and Lynch use the specific expressive possibilities of film—color, light, camera movement, music, editing—to create works that only fully reveal their all-enveloping quality in their original analogue format and in the cinema auditorium. This program curated by Gary Vanasian places selected films by both artists into a dialogue. Bringing together ten of Dario Argento’s films, this is the most comprehensive retrospective of his oeuvre to be presented in Germany.

december 2021, arsenal cinema

arsenal 3: 
Works that Correspond with Dario Argento and David Lynch

To expand on our main program in December, we are showing two features and six shorter works that correspond with the oeuvres of directors Dario Argento and David Lynch on our streaming platform arsenal 3.

The oeuvres of both stand in the tradition of experimental and surrealist cinema. Some of the stylistic techniques used prominently in their work (such as fetishizing close-ups blown up to an unreal degree or visual distortions) can already be found in the cinema of the 20s and 40s. Hans Richter’s FILMSTUDIE (Germany 1926) contrasts surfaces, lines, and abstract forms with similar objects from real-life, such as an eye-ball or a head. In VORMITTAGSSPUK (Germany 1928), everyday objects rebel against people and daily routine. Maya Deren’s masterpiece MESHES OF THE AFTERNOON (USA 1943) creates its uncanny atmosphere via a subjective camera that strides though space, an essential stylistic device for the horror film by the 70s at the very latest. Detail shots of a knife anticipate one typical visual motif of the giallo genre. In FACE I AND II (West Germany 1969), Ludwig Schönherr makes a visual identity dissolve via opposing individual frames of the face of Beatrice "Trixie" Cordua. WHICH IS WITCH (Marie Losier, France 2020) shows three witch sisters in a colorful and surreal fairy tale. DARK ADAPTATION (Canada 2016) by Chris Gehman creates unique visual impressions via experiments with color and optical techniques. The feature NIGHT PASSAGE (Trinh T. Minh-ha, USA 2004) is the story of three friends who set off on a spiritual journey into the realm between life and death and arrive in sensorial landscapes of dream. Finally, we are showing—as the only work of this selection that doesn’t form part of arsenal distribution’s range—Mariano Baino’s visual impressive feature DARK WATERS (United Kingdom, Ukraine, Italy 1993), which is pervaded by experimental images and enjoys cult status today as one of the last great Italian horror films before this defining era in Italian film history came to an end.

december 2021, arsenal cinema

16. Forum Expanded

The 17th Forum Expanded program is currently being put together, but the 16th edition is not yet fully over. Two films unable to be screened during the summer special due to their length are now being shown with their filmmakers in attendance on December 12 and 18: SABA’ SANAWAT HAWL DELTA AL-NEEL (Seven Years Around the Nile Delta, Egypt 2020, 12.12.) by Sharief Zohairy and BLACK BACH ARTSAKH (Armenia/USA 2021, 18.12.) by Ayreen Anastas and Rene Gabri.

december 2021, arsenal cinema

Ozu in Color – Yasujiro Ozu’s Late Work

Many people think of calm, precisely composed still lifes in nuanced black and white in relation to the films of Yasujiro Ozu (1903–1963), one of Japan’s most famous directors. Others make reference to the moving, universal themes of his films, which Ozu sometimes develops with silent precision and at others with ironic humor: generational conflicts, changing times, farewells, grief, loneliness. When it comes to the specifics of Ozu’s oeuvre, the focus is seldom on color, however unfairly, which he only turned to late on and with a certain degree of hesitation. Looking at Ozu’s color films and thus the last phase of his career reveals an important addition to his cinematic vocabulary, a stylistic device that he doesn’t just use to underline and comment on occurrences and moods, but also to reveal that melancholy itself carries a particular hue. (December 21-30)

arsenal cinema: Female Artists’ Program

01:00 pm Cinema 1


Don’t Kiss Me, I’m Busy

Sexability

Don’t Kiss Me, I’m Busy Dagmar Scheibert Work in progress, Trailer 10 min
Sexability Anne-Christin Plate Work in progress 30 min

Followed by a discussion with the filmmakers
Free admission
arsenal cinema: Female Artists’ Program

03:00 pm Cinema 1


Close Up Marx (AT)

Inside or Outside

Close Up Marx (AT) Justin Time Work in progress 30 min
Inside or Outside Juliane Henrich Work in progress 30 min

Followed by a discussion with the filmmakers
Free admission
arsenal cinema: Female Artists’ Program

05:00 pm Cinema 1


Food Kitchen/Speed Kitchen

Between Images (AT)

Food Kitchen/Speed Kitchen Gamma Bak Work in progress 20 min
Between Images (AT) Franzis Kabisch Work in progress 30 min

Followed by a discussion with the filmmakers
Free admission
arsenal cinema: „The gatekeepers exist to be overthrown.“ 
Amos Vogel – Repeats and Responses (II)

07:00 pm Cinema 1


A Changing Canon: The Western American Experimental

A Changing Canon: The Western American Experimental
Poon Tang Trilogy Ben Van Meter USA 1964 16 mm OV 8 min
Reflections on Black Stan Brakhage USA 1955 16 mm OV 12 min
The Season’s Change Lawrence Jordan USA 1960 16 mm silent 7 min
Pastorale d’été Will Hindle USA 1958 16 mm OV 9 min
Beat Christopher Maclaine USA 1958 16 mm OV 6 min
Have You Sold Your Dozen Roses?
Philip Green, David Myers, Irving Saraf, Allen Willis USA 1959 DVD OV 9 min
A Hurrah for Soldiers Bruce Baillie USA 1963 16 mm OV 4 min
Anselmo Chick Strand USA 1967 16 mm OV 3 min

Introduced by Miguel Fernández Labayen, John Sundholm
arsenal cinema: „The gatekeepers exist to be overthrown.“ 
Amos Vogel – Repeats and Responses (II)

09:00 pm Cinema 1


I’m Mad – Outtakes From the History of Yugoslav Unconventional Cinema

I’m Mad – Outtakes From the History of Yugoslav Unconventional Cinema
Pravda Justice Ante Babaja Yugoslavia 1962
Digital file without dialogue 12 min
K3 ili čisto nebo bez oblaka K3 or Clear Sky Without Clouds
Mihovil Pansini Yugoslavia 1963 DCP silent 3 min
Scusa Signorina Mihovil Pansini Yugoslavia 1963
16 mm without dialogue 7 min
Most Bridge Vladimir Petek Yugoslavia 1963
16 mm silent 3 min
Sretanje Encounter Vladimir Petek Yugoslavia 1963
35 mm without dialogue 8 min
Erna Erna Banovac Yugoslavia 1963
Digital file without dialogue 3 min
Rondo Divna Jovanović Yugoslavia 1963
Digital file without dialogue 4 min
Jukebox Ante Verzotti Yugoslavia 1966
Digital file without dialogue 7 min
Fluorescencije Fluorescences Ante Verzotti
Yugoslavia 1967 Digital file without dialogue 5 min
Grad u izlogu City in the Shop Window Tatjana Ivančić
Yugoslavia 1969 DCP without dialogue 6 min
I’m Mad Ivan Martinac Yugoslavia 1967
Digital file without dialogue 7 min
Sve ili ništa Everything or Nothing Ivan Martinac
Yugoslavia 1968 Digital file without dialogue 10 min

Introduced by Petra Belc