The Film as Film: a Video-Essay about Michael Snow's Wavelength, 2016
"The Film as Film" is a Video-Essay about Michael Snow's film Wavelength (1967). The video works almost as a written essay, transformed into an audiovisual work. I try to point out the main ideas and concepts in Snow's work, by resorting to authors like P. Adams Sitney, William C. Wees, Ken Johnson, as well as to a few texts by and interviews to Michael Snow.
A Hollywood movie encourages us to enter fully into the fictional world it represents and to lose awareness of our actual circumstances and even of the fact that we are watching a film; it’s only when a movie isn’t working that we think about how long it is. In Snow’s work, we are as much aware of the film medium itself (its qualities of light, texture, color and sound, the way the camera frames and composes) and the circumstances of a film’s presentation (its duration in actual time as opposed to fictional time, our own presence in front of a white screen) as we are of what is represented. In fact, Snow deliberately impoverishes or destabilizes the elements of fiction that conventional films depend on - character, plot, setting, narrative pace - in order to secure the audience’s focus on the immediate, actual experience of the film.
- Ken Johnson, (1994) Being and Seeing, p. 74. IN Art in America. ISSN 0004-3214. Springfield, Massachusettes. Vol. 82, n.7, Julho, pp.70-77, p. 109.
The Film as Film features on À Pala de Walsh's website: