Another week at Fandor means lots of things: New Criterion Picks for our U.S. members, new featured releases on the homepage and of course, some great video essays on Keyframe. Here’s the latest and greatest, from our planet to yours:
What makes a great documentary? According to Gordon Quinn, founding member and artistic director of Chicago-based documentary powerhouse Kartemquin Films, it’s story, craft and ethics. Kartemquin Films is celebrating fifty years of cinematic truth-telling this year, and to mark the occasion we’re revisiting a piece by Keyframe’s Chief Video Essayist Kevin B. Lee, speaking to Quinn and pairing the interview with lots of great clips from the fifty years of films!
Speaking of Golden Anniversaries, our latest Criterion Picks treat our U.S. members to a limited-run sampler of the greatest hits from 1966. When you see the list, you’ll agree: it was a great year for film, indeed!
Now that your social media feeds are finally unclogged with photos of your friends with their dads, it’s totally worth revisiting Nelson Carvajal’s moving tribute to fathers on film, a tear-jerker we know we’ll return to for years to come. Pro tip: Carvajal’s accompanying text is also a poignant must-read.
If you check out Fandor’s New Releases page this week, you’ll find lots of new offerings from Sophie Michael (who is also the source of this post’s gorgeous GIF header) and Peter Rose. Both are prolific multi-disciplinary creators who show frequently in galleries as well as darkened theaters, and both specialize in one of Fandor’s favorite kind of movies: shorts! Let’s see what’s streaming courtesy of these moving image artists:
Eva Rothschild of Frieze characterizes Michael, who is also a FIX filmmaker, as having “an acute awareness of the nostalgia we attach to both formats and objects.” This awareness definitely shows through in the ten new films that hit the Fandor library this week! From the bronze votives in Morning and the ancient ceramics in Attica to the retail displays of Carousel (pictured in this week’s header), Michael’s animations activate our attachment and inspire, surprise and delight. However, her oeuvre is far from one-note. You’ll also find a four-part series of experimental “home movies”, following Astrid, their protagonist, over the course of three years from ages seven to ten. The first of these films, Astrid Colours (pictured directly above), is actually a warm-hearted collaboration between filmmaker and subject.
Peter Rose performs for the camera, invents languages (and then translates them) and loves structuralism. He’s also the kind of director who can create a “film noir” with absolutely no images. We’d tell you more, but these works, which have been widely screened and collected over Rose’s decades-long career, really need to be seen to be believed. Watch Metalogue, Pressures of the Text (pictured directly above) and Secondary Currents (that’s the one with the letter jumble) right now, and stay tuned — Studies in Transfalumination and The Man Who Could Not See Far Enough arrive in the library on the 25th and 26th, respectively.
From family ties to conceptual joyrides, this week’s roundup covers a lot of bases. Next week we’ll have even more new films and film news (which is better than new news and films film) to share. Until then, happy watching!