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Marcella in the wind on the way to the Venster Lantaren

Aside from the films of Nathaniel and Tonino I didn’t see anything else during the festival.  I missed Michael Pilz’ Rose and Jasmine, an Iranian journey film, as I’d seen it on a DVD he sent me some time ago, and his screening was at the same time as mine, too.  Luckily I got to see him a bit,  if only briefly.

My own screenings were nicely attended, despite  the early afternoon time, except the last, late at night, also nicely attended.  At the first one I stayed, as I’d never seen it projected large, or in fact seen it all the way, thanks to the 18 hour a day dead-line grind I had before heading to the festival.   And so when a few sound lapses came I wasn’t totally surprised, though when then a piece of music was missing, and at the end some quarter seconds of unintended frames popped in disruptively, and another piece of sound precipitously cut out, I felt like an ice-pick had jabbed me in the gut.  Working against deadlines has its price, in this case a bit steep to my tastes.  The audience though didn’t seem to notice much or mind.   Despite it being a rather slow film, very few left – say 2 or 3 of audiences of 75 – 9o or so each time.  And, rather to my surprise – though I thought it a rather good and enjoyable film, despite it’s languid pace, absence of story, etc. – it was very enthusiastically received, with applause, most people staying for Q and A, and some lavishly nice comments.  I’m not quite sure just what I hit on, but something nice.    So that was a pleasure.

Imagens de uma cidade perdida

At the last screening, Will Oldham, who was attending the festival for a film he was in,  New Jerusalem, and had been at Nathaniel’s screening, was there, and clearly liked the film and asked some questions.  I’d been tempted at Nick’s  to introduce myself as I’d seen him in a concert in Italy in the summer of 2009, near Ravena, and had quite liked his persona and music and had been tempted to inquire, since he acts in films (none of which I have seen), if perhaps….   But at Nick’s screening my usual reticence and a kind of shyness won out and I stayed back.  But when he materialized at mine, asked a few questions and seemed clearly to like, I felt emboldened and made my quiry, to a positive response, even if in my talk I’d mentioned my fictional DV films  with budgets of $50 or $500 or $2000, so he should understand the fiscal reality.   His co-actor, Colm O’Leary was also there, and likewise liked the film a lot.  Go figger, actors liking films with no actors?    While I am not at all sure I want to make another fictional narrative, maybe something else could be done.  We shall see.

Our visit to Rotterdam included going with Nathaniel to Den Haag to the Mauritshuis museum, where there are many beautiful works, among them Vermeer’s View of Delft, and Girl with a Pearl Earring, as well as a lovely Rembrandt self-portrait – a later one, drenched in pathos.  Nick was particularly entranced by a winter landscape scene by Jacob van Ruisdael.

Van Ruisdael Winter SceneVermeer, View of Delft

Nathaniel had thought to take the little trip to Delft, but as we accidentally got off the train enroute to Den Haag, and its dreary contemporary reality showed itself, he changed his mind.  Instead a day later we took a little boat-trip to Dordrecht, the oldest city in the Netherlands, passing very modern heavily industrialized landscapes full of the interesting objects of a huge port, to get off in a little perhaps overly picturesque town in the cold, where we quickly took refuge in a cafe for something warm: Nathaniel a wonderful mustard soup, Marcella a mint tea, and myself a Belgian beer.

Old yard in Den Haag

Of course, there is also the modern world, for what it is worth:

Den Haag street signs

As I saw the landscape slide by on our boat journey, and saw the paintings at Mauritshuis, and later in the museum in Rotterdam, I felt a pained sense of what is lost in our world, now over-run with ourselves and our machines, such as the one I am using now.  It is a lost world, surviving now only in a few remote  corners of this planet.   Back in the crazed environment of the festival, I did not feel at home.  See this for thoughts on that.

As a footnote, a few days ago, checking some film thing, I bumped into a notice that an actor I had worked with on Uno a te (Italian language film of 1995) Daniele Formica, had died of pancreatic cancer on Feb. 1.    He was born in 1949, 6 years after me.



  1. Will Oldham performed in Kelly Reichardt’s “Old Joy”, perhaps you already knew that. For something really different, you can find via youtube, a piece in which he and Caveh Zahedi ingest mushrooms and share a trip together. It’s, um…interesting…

    • Yes, I did know about Old Joy, though I only saw clips. While many people have told me Kelly’s films are “like” mine, I can’t say I see it, except they’re cheap, like mine. I saw some clips and skipped seeing the whole film. Ditto Lucy and Wendy one and the newest, also saw clips and did not like. I think someone told me about Caveh’s thing but I don’t think I saw. Maybe I should.

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  1. […] post-festival comments on my own film see this, and for comments on Nathaniel's screenings, see […]

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