Friday, April 15, 2011

Motion Studies: The second volt

(Le Quattro Volte/ Kino International, 2010)
            Black, with a few rural noises. We know there will be a cut. There has to be a cut. In just several more seconds—
            (If Le Quattro Volte were not so serene, it would dole out more images like the one that follows. But to director  Michelangelo Frammartino, serenity is mitigated with shock so that we might understand serenity better. Shock value is never an inherently bad thing; nor is being shocked a feeling to scorn in our movie-going selves. Especially when it is a shock at something gross and life affirming.)
            Such as a female goat’s rear end, discharging a slimy, bloodied, tumbling baby goat that thuds on the hay-covered barn floor. It looks like a sack of life; its legs announcing themselves to the floor, its clobbered-together form intending to get on in this daylight. The Mother stands motionless; the baby goat bays. Its voice sounds nearly human. The Mother is colored a shade of brown, the baby is white. The slime from its body drips on the hay, the baby contorts its figure, it  starts to clobber across the floor. The Mother moves away. The baby is rising up from the slime, the blood, the hay, and will set about its mission—
            The gaze of the camera is steady as a doctor’s eye. There has been a cut.