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The History of the Devil is wickedly good, informative and concise. A no-frills Welsh film produced in association with SBS Australia and distributed by Siren Visual, it’s roughly 52 minutes in length and packs a fair dinkum amount of history into its slender running time.
The documentary itself is made up entirely of mostly still images alternating sporadically with talking heads; religious scholars, theologians and reverends.
Directed by Greg Moodie and written and produced by Dave Flitton, it was researched by Eibhleann Ni Ghriofa, Deirdre Learmont and Craig McGregor.
It’s an impressive andvery open-minded account and offers some fantastic insight into the evolution; the hows and whys the specter of the Devil has existed and morphed through the ages from the dawn of civilization through to the new millennium.
So despite its relatively low-fi approach, the richness and diversity of its imagery; the historical plaques, plates, engravings, illustrations, paintings, drawings, and the occasional staged re-enactment (some dude dressed up in rather bemusing demonic attire), keeps the documentary at a high level of beguilement.
Tag Archives | Documentary
“I had to struggle to speak intelligibly. I asked my laboratory assistant, who was informed of the self-experiment, to escort me home. We went by bicycle, no automobile being available because of wartime restrictions on their use. On the way home, my condition began to assume threatening forms. Everything in my field of vision wavered and was distorted as if seen in a curved mirror. I also had the sensation of being unable to move from the spot. Nevertheless, my assistant later told me that we had traveled very rapidly. Finally, we arrived at home safe and sound, and I was just barely capable of asking my companion to summon our family doctor and request milk from the neighbors.”
That must have been one hell of a bike ride!
How to Make Money Selling Drugs?
via Salon Andrew O’Hehir
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A slick documentary with a jokey premise argues that the “war on drugs” has been a soul-destroying disaster
Despite its slick packaging and overtly facetious premise, director Matthew Cooke and producer Adrian Grenier’s faux-educational documentary “How to Make Money Selling Drugs” packs a wallop. While imparting lessons about the economic realities of the drug trade – a thriving, booming and ever-diversifying realm of entrepreneurial capitalism, in spite of the massively expensive attempt to shut it down – Cooke’s film reminds us that America’s destructive global misadventures of the last 20 years have a corollary that’s every bit as bad right here at home.
If anything, the “war on drugs” has been even worse and even stupider than the “war on terror,” although they’ve become so intimately interconnected in moral, technological and philosophical terms that it’s not like we get to choose.
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This documentary examines the flaws in our systems, and the mechanisms that work against democracy and the environment. From conflicts of interests in politics and unregulated corporate power, to a news media that serves the interests of powerful elites; ETHOS explores the systems that lead us into over consumption and warfare. Too often the media celebrates aspects of our society that belong in the dark ages, while at the same time ignoring or ridiculing progressive thinking or ideas. Many aspects of the way our systems work almost guarantee our destruction as a society and that’s what this film is about. Fractured societies, poverty, disparity, pollution, warfare. Is there something inherently wrong with the human race? Is that what we should think of ourselves? We have tried to set up forms of law and government that safeguard the public good.
It’s a little old, but if you haven’t seen it then I think you’ll find it thought provoking.
WSB haunts the entirety of counter-cultural curation like the grey eminence he was often portrayed as, but, it’s important to note that Burroughs rarely portrayed himself this way.
I thought I’d seen every Burroughs documentary, but this one was news to me.
Words of Advice: William S. Burroughs On the Road is a 1983 documentary that finds the Beat Generation icon touring Scandinavia, signing books and giving readings of works like The Place of Dead Roads in his inimical, laconic snarl. Along the way, he waxes philosophical about cats, Hiroshima, Brion Gysin and the illusion of duality. He’s polite and hilarious throughout.
Here Burroughs bemoans the high cost of death in ancient Egypt:
Watch the full movie at the Snag Films website.
“it’s not for lack of love of the language that these films have no words. It’s because, from my point of view, our language is in a state of vast humiliation. It no longer describes the world in which we live.”
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What results from Warwick’s footage is a “gonzomentary,” a mix of fourth-wall busting filmmaking, mockumentary, Gonzo journalism and whatever else can be added into the mix, which includes: Uncle Binky the pedophile clown; a Christian producer/investor who wants the film to contain no swearing, no drinking and no drugs, right before she has a crisis of faith and becomes a mime; a silent film; Tito the drug dealer, who is actually a British actor (David Proch) stuck in a Method acting Hell and Warwick’s own descent into madness while chronicling the adventures of Clark and J.C. And penises. Lots of penises.
Clark: A Gonzomentary Part 1 is a whole bucket of crazy, and I really enjoyed it for all of its insanity. At no point did I really have a grasp on what I was watching, as it constantly turns in and over on itself. Even when I’d come up with a criticism to lodge at it, the film itself would find a way to address it.