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Projekcija: Ricky D`Ambrose – Notes on an Apperance (2018)

U petak 25.10. s početkom u 20:30 u projekcijskoj dvorani Kino kluba Split možete prisustvovati pojekciji filma “Bilješke o ozbiljavanju” (Notes on an Apperance; 2018) newyorkškog underground režisera Rickya D`Ambrosea (1987). Minimalistički zanatski filmski izraz, poredbe s Bressonom po pitanju tretmana kolorita slike, tehnička odstupanja u pravcu napredne beta digitalije, dramaturška tenzija formirana oko narativnog (hispano) psihološkog koncepta raspoznatljivog kao “saudade”, te frivoliziranje aktera kao desubjektivizacijski manirizam karakterističan za klasičnu narativno-eksperimentalnu kinematografiju koju dosljedno reprogramiraju i britanski umjetnici Daniel&Clara čije smo radove nedavno takođe prikazali u Kino klubu Split temeljne su odrednice D`Amboseovog filmskog stila. Do sada je (IMDB) realizirao 12 kratkih i 2 dugometražna dokumentarna i/ili igrana filma. Povodom premijernih revijalnih prikazivanja tijekom kojih je kao jedinstveni i pomalo naivan primjer neosporno kvalitetne “nove kinematografije” zamijećen i u notornoj berlinskoj festivalskoj filmskoj kaljuži iz čijeg ga je bezidejnog sineatskog komposta tom prilikom izdvojio, te analizirao i “vratio kući” i ugledni strukovni časopis “Hollywood Reporter”, uz “American Cinematografer” vjerojatno najrelevantniji, a k tomu i najdugovječniji korektiv globalnih sineatskih trendova. U produžetku teksta donosimo (c/p) integralni prikaz novinara “Hollywood Reportera” Franka Shecka:

A young man goes missing in Brooklyn in Ricky D’Ambrose’s experimental feature being showcased at New Directors/New Films.

Stubbornly opaque in its narrative, Ricky D’Ambrose’s debut feature is the sort of experimental film perfectly designed for exposure in highbrow festivals. This tale of a young man who goes missing in Brooklyn has some intriguing moments and a unique visual style, but it proves far too elliptical to be of much more than academic interest. Notes on an Appearance was recently showcased at the Film Society of Lincoln Center and Museum of Modern Art’s New Directors/New Films festival. The fragmentary storyline revolves around David (Bingham Bryant), a young man who moves to Brooklyn (where else for a hipster film?) to live with and work as a research assistant for his friend Todd (Keith Poulson). Supported by a hefty foundation grant, Todd is working on a biography of Stephen Taubes, a (fictional) political and social philosopher whose controversial writings have an anarchistic bent and whose reputation has suffered because of his affiliation with an anti-Semitic magazine. (That Taubes is voiced by Stephen F. Cohen, a university professor and writer who is frequently defended both Vladimir Putin and Donald Trump in The Nation, proves one of the film’s slyest jokes.) Not too long after arriving in a Brooklyn that seems remarkably free of both people and such modern trappings as computers and cellphones, David mysteriously disappears. Todd and their mutual friend Madeleine (Tallie Medel) attempt to discover his whereabouts by combing through his possessions in search of clues. Their investigation provides the film with its most distinctive component, a near-fetishistic examination of objects including postcards, vintage maps, blueprints, train and subway schedules, diary entries and even handwritten lists of expenses. They’re mostly seen in close-up, often held by disembodied hands, and they’re chiefly responsible for what passes as the narrative. While it’s possible to surmise that David’s disappearance has something to do with his research involving Taubes, the idea is left unexplored. The filmmaker’s impressive attention to visual detail is also manifested in mock-ups of numerous literary references to Taubes, including book reviews in such magazines as The New Yorker and Harper’s, a New York Times obituary and articles in The Washington Post and the New York Post. The inventive sound design, featuring occasional voiceovers, effectively delivers an auditory portrait of urban life. But for all the technical prowess on display, Notes on an Appearance proves too fragmentary to hold the viewer’s interest. Its minimalist aesthetic quickly becomes wearisome, lacking sufficient variety or substance to warrant even a brief running time. The filmmaker has previously garnered acclaim for several short films, and you can feel him straining to pad this one out to feature length. Scenes are often punctuated by lengthy moments in which the screen is filled entirely by a bright shade of green, another visual device that comes to feel repetitive. Shortly before the film ends, we see grainy videos of the World Trade Center’s twin towers. What they have to do with anything is anyone’s guess.

(Frank Scheck)

“In the absence of taste, style, and art, what flourishes is the interesting, the condition to which all looks aspire. If D’Ambrose’s films can be said to have a signature shot, it is the close-up on a face, its expression blank or opaque but for the downward gaze of the eyes, which introduces a hint of shame.”

(Phil Coldiron; “Cinema Scope”)

“Set within the remote planet of Brooklyn intelligentsia, Ricky D’Ambrose’s hourlong Notes on an Appearance relays a narrative teeming with incident — death, disappearance — through an elusive yet methodical style.”

(Danny King; “The Village Voice”)

“In the micro-budget filmmaking community, writer-director-editor Ricky D’Ambrose has developed a style all his own, favoring minimalist art direction (lots of monochrome earth tones), stationary cameras, voiceovers, and trails of printed materials that carry a significant amount of narrative detail. The aesthetic has garnered various comparisons to classic European art house auteurs like Robert Bresson and Michelangelo Antonioni, but the origins of D’Ambrose’s cinematic world-building are also highly literary.”

(Grant Phipps; “Tone Madison”)



Cast: Keith Poulson, Tallie Medel, Bingham Bryant, Madeleine James, Kathryn Danielle, A.S. Hamrah, Stephen Gurewitz
Director-screenwriter-production designer-editor: Ricky D’Ambrose
Producer: Graham Swon
Executive producer: Leslie Evers
Director of photography: Bart Cortright

60 minutes

U programu Short(s) Petting s početkom u 19:15 (powered by web-oriented group AGITATE:21C) ovoga puta donosimo osam recentnih narativno eksperimentalnih filmova donekle sukladnih ovotjednom filmskom odabiru u centralnom projekcijskom terminu:



(01) Bartosz Reetz – Przystanek (The Stop) (PL; 2018) 14:54
(02) Charlotte McGowan-Griffin – Folie Circulaire (UK; 2019) 14:57
(03) Gisela Guzmán – Llegué bien (Mexico; 2019) 05:40
(04) Cinéma Fragile – Cinemavita – Mentre guardiamo il mare (FR; 2019) 08:26
(05) Eija Temisevä – Rock-Paper-Scissors (FI; 2018) 04:45
(06) Eija Temisevä – Huuto – The Scream (FI; 2018) 01:55
(07) Eija Temisevä – Realistic-abstract (FI; 2019) 03:08
(08) Jon Jost – Mountains as Mountains (USA; 2017) 11:47



Projekcije petkom u Kino klubu Split edukativnog su karaktera, namijenjene članovima i ostalim zainteresiranima, ulaz je besplatan, svi su dobrodošli…


Za Kino klub Split:

Darko Duilo