Issue 20 | September 2008


A Joyful Noise

By Owen Armstrong

Though the term musique concrete would not be coined until the mid 1940s, Dziga Vertov had begun to explore the conceptual nature of recorded sound over 20 years earlier, addressing the potential of cinema as a visually symphonic medium. Marking his first foray into the realm of sound cinema, Vertov’s 1931 film Enthusiasm – also known as Symphony of the Donbas – further examines the elements of montage prevalent in his previous and most widely regarded work Man With a Movie Camera (1929) and also introduces the relatively uncharted method of field recording as a means of enhancing the photographically rhythmic qualities of cinema.
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A Year of Living Dangerously

By James Norton

A newly aggressive Russia is on the move again, as many over the past year have found to their cost. Despite the cut-throat capitalism now prevailing, the current regime have not forgotten Lenin’s dictum “the cinema is the most important of all the arts”.


By Rosy Rockets

In the early 20th century, the curator of a natural history museum in Lithuania tried to orchestrate a beetle fight between two nocturnal insects whose snooziness was persistently triggered by limelight. Unable to coerce his performers into rumbling instead of slumbering, Starewicz turned for inspiration to the satirical avant-garde...

Forever War

By Lee Hill

In the memoir Jarhead by Anthony Swafford, and the underrated film version by Sam Mendes, the ineffectuality of many anti-war films is demonstrated by the bloodthirsty enthusiasm with which critically acclaimed work as Apocalypse Now and Full Metal Jacket is greeted by US troops relaxing at base.

Fragments on Light and Memory

By John Bradburn

Two bodies. Together in golden sunlight. Held close. A father and his son. They could be lovers. The image as a memory. A fluctuating memory of drifting focus and dappled light. There is only sensation, certainty does not exist. Memory and image so unexplainable. Textures. Whole images filled with flesh.