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To Each His Own Cinema

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To Each His Own Cinema is a French anthology collection that was created in 2007.  Like it said on my post on World Cinema, this collection is a tribute to the Cannes Film Festival as it celebrates it’s 60th anniversary.  The 36 acclaimed directors that were chosen to participate in this collection were asked to express “their state of mind of the moment as inspired by the motion picture theatre” through their own short films.  Each short is 3 minutes long and stems from different parts of the world.  World Cinema was the first film we watched that is a part of the collection and we followed up with 9 others.

  • One Fine Day by Takeshi Kitano – this one was mainly about types of movie lovers and the lengths they’ll go to see the movies they want, like walk miles down a dirt road.  And even if the film keeps screwing up, it’s still the satisfaction and escapism of seeing a film.
  • Three Minutes by Theo Angelopoulos – this was more about the actors in films and their interactions with one another and how they are just as effected and moved by films as the directors are.
  • Dans le Noir by Andrei Konchalovsky – this is about the people who work for film on a smaller level than a director or an actor or a producer.  this is about the people who control and distribute a movie-goer’s ticket.  even though it’s a job, it’s still something they love and times still stops for them while they’re watching film.
  • Diary of a Moviegoer by Nanni Moretti – this is a wide look at someone’s own personal diary of all the films he’s seen and how each of them have been significant to his own life and the people who he cares about the most or enough to take to them to a film with him, along with doing it by himself.
  • The Electric Princess Picture House by Hou Hsiao-hsien – this is about a larger community coming together and waiting in line to watch a film.
  • Darkness by Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne – this is just about the darkness and isolation of a movie theater
  • Anna by Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu – this is a little similar to “Darkness” because the majority of it is filmed in a theater but this is also like “One Fine Day” because there are so many types of movie lovers, like the blind woman who needs to be told what is happening as she listens.
  • Movie Night by Zhang Yimou – this is about a wide community of children and adults coming together to watch films and participate in making their own for their own entertainment and enjoyment.
  • The Lady Bug by Jane Campion – this is about the little creatures who share a love for film as much as humans.

Each film is the director’s own personal exhibition of what film is to them and the importance of it to them in particular. These films have a different context but still have the definition of the love of film and why it’s important for a wide variety of reasons. Because, it is extremely important for more reasons than a collection like this could expand on.  These directors do an excellent job in expressing the different sides of a love for film.

These films can be paired with a term that we learned in class, a term that relates to a passion for cinema and all of it’s components.  The term cinephilia refers to the passion of a cinephile, which is a person who loves film to the highest extent.  This term has been used since the silent film era, when film clubs and groups first began after the particular medium changed everything.  Cinephilia is often discussed with Post-War France after World War II with students in France were rioting in front movie theaters after foreign films were banned, along with screenings and film clubs. This eventually generated a lot of uproar for the youth culture during that time which evidently led to the riots.  But it was the love of film that led the students to riots and the anger for not having the access to see films.  Eventually that term kept moving as film gained more and more lovers and will continue to do so as the years go on.  Currently, blogging (oddly enough) is included as a part of contemporary cinephilia.

Lumiere & Company

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Lumiere & Company (1995)

These films are a collaboration between 41 different directors who were given a camera and asked to follow 3 simple rules.

1. A short cannot be longer than 52 seconds long

2. No synchronized sound

3. No more than 3 takes

I think in most of the films, these rules were probably broken just for style purposes.  We only watched 4 different ones in our class and they all were easy to signify as different styles and personalities pulled through.

David Lynch

His signature was quick to point out and simple to name, strange.  It was almost dream-like because it all just seemed completely unreal and distorted to something that would be pleasant or typically (for me) interesting to watch.  I’m not necessarily a fan of David Lynch and this is only because we later viewed a film of his that I really didn’t like but after recapping this particular film, it just furthers my reasoning as to why I don’t like his style.  I think he’s brilliant in the sense of his stories being interesting and original but just for my personal insight, I wasn’t a fan.  I think the concept of this, though; with the same camera for 40 different directors were pretty cool and an interesting way to look at film through a director’s viewpoint with just a very short amount of time.

Spike Lee

I liked this one, he obviously broke the 2nd rule though, but I think it’s okay considering these were meant to portray the director’s particular style, even if the whole idea behind it with rules had to be distorted.  I think I like them more because the rules were broken. I thought it was nice that Spike Lee used a very personal subject to him for his main idea and he executed it well.  It was simple but had a lot to it.  It was his son, so I’m sure it was easier to film someone he was so comfortable with, and I’m sure even for his son, it was more comfortable for him to be filmed by his father.  The whole “Say Dada” part as the only dialogue gave it the family affect and made you feel as if Spike Lee was sharing a small part of his own world.  This one would probably be my favourite out of the ones we watched in the collection.

Theo Angelopoulos

This was hard for me to understand throughout the film.  It was noted afterwards that Angelopoulos’ style was the sense of a journey and discovery, which I definitely got while watching it but it was still not as easy to understand.  And I think that has a lot to do with the Greek culture and not knowing a lot of their history or the stories that they grow up with.  I liked the concept of watching a film while the character in the film is kind of interacting with you or looking into the lens at you, or into the “future.”  I think this film had a lot of underlying tones and wasn’t nearly as simple as the first two we watched and was just far more complex and unless you know Angelopoulos’ style from the start, it can be extremely hard to understand or interpret, as it was for me.  I especially liked this film in black and white though, while the others are in black and white as well, I feel like this, if it were an option, wouldn’t need colour, and the story was already enough.  It added more of the historical aspect to it, too.

Abbas Kiarostami

This was just another simple film out of this collection.  It portrayed the idea of realism and how an everyday occurrence can be something that is worth filming and I think this particular director did it well.  It was obviously an instance in anyone’s everyday life that he filmed and it was obvious that the phone call was some sort of a significance to the main character and possibly the director since it was his vision for just a small amount of time and with a specific camera that was given to him to experiment.

I think the concept of these films was really inventive and interesting to test the directors to display their styles in less than 52 seconds.  Out of the one’s we saw, Spike Lee’s was my favourite because his was more personal and much easier to point out a specific sense of style.  In the sense of style, I think David Lynch’s was pretty successful in terms of identifying what his particular style was.  Theo Angelopoulos made me want to discover exactly what his style was, which may have made his film successful because his style is noted as a journey or anything relating to a discovery.  Abba Kiarostami was the simplest out of all of them but was still completely relevant in anyone’s life, as a film buff or not.  It made sense the most just because it was familiar and made something so simple, something beautiful to view.

Written by madieshortfilm

April 13, 2011 at 4:46 am