Re: [Frameworks] Experimental Documentary

From: Jennifer Saparzadeh (email suppressed)
Date: Sun Jul 18 2010 - 21:39:51 PDT

But what if someone makes something like that not knowing about the history?
What if they discover film and use it in such ways without ever knowing that
anybody else did that until later? And is there no such thing as experimenting
with the film format in new ways? I mean, it is not like all of the
capabilities of film have been broken through.. I am not certain of that but I
imagine not. [the following is not directed at you, it's just a general
expression of anger] The sixties are over! I was born in and breathe in the
shadow of the sixties.. I am starting to desperately hate them! There are many
bright and innovative people doing things now (new things).. I believe that
it's time to leave it to the past and look to the present.

Quoting Fred Camper <email suppressed>:

> "The films you have just seen are not "experimental." I made some
> experiments in the process of working on them, and I left those
> experiments back in the editing room. What you have seen are finished
> films."
> I don't know if I ever heard a filmmaker say that exactly, but I think
> it was the sentiments of many filmmakers starting in the 1960s.
> As I argued in an article in the 20th anniversary issue of "Millennium
> Film Journal," published in 1987, the phrase "experimental film" no
> longer connotes, in its most common usage, a film that is new,
> different, pushes the boundaries, etc. "Experimental film" is now,
> instead, a genre. Scratching on film, painting on film, lack of an
> obvious linear narrative, and a number of other features (though not
> necessarily all of them) make a film "experimental."
> This in itself is neither a good nor bad thing, in my view, as long as
> the filmmaker who is scratching on film understands she or he is
> working in a tradition, and is aware of the past, and believes she is
> adding something.
> Fred Camper
> Chicago
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