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By Scott MacDonald

A severe Cinema five is the 5th quantity in Scott MacDonald's severe Cinema sequence, the main broad, in-depth exploration of autonomous cinema on hand in English. during this new set of interviews, MacDonald engages filmmakers in particular discussions in their motion pictures and of the non-public studies and political and theoretical currents that experience formed their paintings. The interviews are prepared to precise the impressive variety of recent self sustaining cinema and the interactive neighborhood of filmmakers that has committed itself to generating sorts of cinema that critique traditional media.

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I’ve recently finished a film tribute—Elliott’s Suicide—to another friend of mine who committed suicide not long ago. He was a songwriter and singer named Elliott Smith. He’s on the Dreamworks label. He killed himself last October. He was thirty-four and had had a fight with his girlfriend and stabbed himself in the chest with a steak knife in his girlfriend’s kitchen, which was so stupid—but people do stupid things. On the other hand, his lyrics are quite dark; the word “suicide” occurs frequently.

Anger: Well, Curtis Harrington made a short called Fragment of Seeking [1946] at about the same time; it’s a kind of psychodrama. Curtis was coming to terms with the homosexual issue in his own way, which was more oblique than mine. And at the same time, Gregory Markopoulos was beginning to make films. Back in the forties, when there were very few of us working, I was certainly encouraged by the example of Maya Deren: she made her films with very limited means on 16mm, and they were very consciously works of art.

MacDonald: A related thought: as a filmmaker you’ve had many experiences where you have conceptions, and sometimes far more than conceptions, about what you want to do in a film; and then in the process of trying to get the film produced, you come into contact with a world that really doesn’t care about your plans. Once in a while you are able to get a film done—and usually it’s a remarkable film—but there are so many cases where the actual contact with the realities of money keeps the film from getting made; your professional experience as a filmmaker is often more about the excitement of anticipation than about what results.

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