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Busby Berkeley's Work on DVD

Director and choreographer Busby Berkeley was noted for Hollywood musicals featuring lots of scantily clad show girls filmed from overhead in intricate kaleidoscopic patterns. After seeing some of these films again in a new DVD collection, our critic notices a connection between Berkeley and the avant-garde artists of an earlier generation.


Avant-Garde Filmmaking.

Film critic John Powers reviews “Time Code” the new film by Mike Figgis that features four different stories on the screen at one time, by dividing the screen into quadrants. Figgis did this by using four digital cameras, recording each story in real time without edits.


Experimental Filmmaker Paul Morrissey.

Film director Paul Morrissey. He first gained fame as the alter ego of pop artist Andy Warhol during the filming of Warhol's low-budget experimental films like "My Hustler" and "Chelsea Girls." He later directed Warhol-produced films like "Flesh" and "Trash." Morrissey's latest film is titled "Beethoven's Nephew," and is the story of disarray of the composer's private life and his ugly personality. The music is performed by The Vienna Symphony Orchestra.


Modern Art and Film.

Emile De Antonio is regarded as one of the most important political filmmakers of the American Left. His films include "Point of Order," about the McCarthy hearings; "Rush to Judgement," about the Warren Report; "In the Year of the Pig," about the history of Vietnam, and "Underground," where he interviewed members of the Weather Underground. One of De Antonio's biggest influences is John Cage.


Reggio's Unconventional Documentary, Koyaanisqatsi.

Godfrey Reggio is an experimental filmmaker whose work makes uses of montage and sound. His first film, a documentary, "Koyaanisqatsi," derives its title from the Hopi word meaning "unbalanced life." The film manipulates images of cityscapes, and Reggio describes it as showing "the beauty of the beast." The film's music is composed by Philip Glass. Reggio intends the documentary to produce a mind-opening experience for the viewer through the fusion of music and image--to be inspiration, not entertainment.

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