Monday, August 13, 2007

Weak Five @ Chez Poulet: Faust

A full-length feature from the Czech animation director Jan Svankmajer.

3359 Cesar Chavez (aarmya) @ Mission Street

Thanks to Chicken John, we have our Film Farm back! What once was an Odeon tradition, in it's last years, returns again after a recent run at the 12 Galaxies. The intimate and casually elegant setting of Chez Poulet is ultimately fine for Film Farm, bringing you all the amenities without the bar-time retrograde. The screen is bigger, the sound is better, and you get to sit in pews, which makes every movie a bonafide religious experience. Drinks and snacks will be available, and, of course, the popcorn, topped with real greaseburg butter, is always free.

This Week's EYENOISE will feature The Brothers Quay -- look for Du JOUR postings on EYENOISE details.

One of the great Czech filmmakers, JAN SVANKMAJER was born in 1934 in Prague where he still lives. He trained at the Institute of Applied Arts from 1950 to 1954 and then at the Prague Academy of Performing Arts (Department of Puppetry). He soon became involved in the Theatre of Masks and the famous Black Theatre, before entering the Laterna Magika Puppet Theatre where he first encountered film. In 1970 he met his wife, the surrealist painter Eva Svankmajerova, and the late Vratislav Effenberger, the leading theoretician of the Czech Surrealist Group, which Svankmajer joined and of which he still remains a member.

Svankmajer made his first film in 1964 and for over thirty years has made some of the most memorable and unique animated films ever made, gaining a reputation as one of the world's foremost animators, and influencing filmmakers from Tim Burton to The Brothers Quay. His brilliant use of claymation reached its apotheosis with the stunning 1982 film DIMENSIONS OF DIALOGUE. In 1987 Svankmajer completed his first feature film, ALICE, a characteristically witty and subversive adaptation of Alice in Wonderland, and with the ensuing feature film FAUST.....

A tired Czech citizen is handed a map on the streets of Prague; it leads him to a shabby courtyard, a puppet theatre, and a bruising encounter with the powers of evil. He raises the Devil, only to be confronted by a replica of his own face: a typically bleak hint from Svankmajer that we invent our own temptations-that any of us would make a good Faust. The best introduction to Svankmajer remains his short films; "Faust" is less shocking, more narcotic. Still, with its blend of live action, chattering marionettes, and weird, fleshy stop-motion sequences-not to mention the pitch-black of the humor-it throws you off balance more thoroughly than any other movie in town

.....Svankmajer has moved further away from his roots in animation towards live-action filmmaking, though his vision remains as strikingly surreal and uncannily inventive as ever.

8PM AUGUST 132323 C H E Z P O U L E T


A D M I S S I O N23 I S 23 F R E E !!!

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