by Marc Maximov
Tonight at 7, N.C. State’s Campus Cinema is showing Decasia, Bill Morrison’s hypnotic collage of decaying film stock from the early days of motion pictures. For lovers of the visual arts it’s a must-see, well worth a trip to Raleigh if you don’t live there.
For a preview of sorts, check out this short Morrison made two years after Decasia. Using the same methods and collaborating with the same composer (Michael Gordon of Bang on a Can), Light Is Calling is an 8-minute feast of images and sound that someone was thoughtful enough to post on YouTube in high definition (for best results, click through to watch the video on YouTube, then be sure to click the little “HQ” button at the bottom right of the screen to see it in high quality).
Light Is Calling played at Sundance in 2004, in the Frontier Shorts program for “experimental” films (for lack of a better word—if anyone has a better word for (generally) non-narrative films with a fine-arts bloodline, please do the language a favor and popularize it. It’s unfortunate that “art film” is already taken, signifying Ingmar Bergman movies viewed by Woody Allen.) Mike Plante, who’s now a programmer at Cinevegas, put together the Frontier Shorts series for a couple of years, and they were the most engrossing screenings the festival had to offer. Thanks to YouTube, your cable or phone company, and mystery user “milleniummambo,” now you can enjoy the Frontier Shorts experience from the comfort of your own home!
More info about tonight’s screening here.