Bertrand Bonellos last film, Nocturama (2016), borrowed imagery and narrative ideas from George Romeros Dawn of the Dead (1978) and John Carpenters Assault on Precinct 13 (1976), so its not startling that he would go further into genre territory with his latest, Zombi Child.
We are in desperate search of spaces that offer us greater degrees of darknessbe that the cinema or underground caverns or possibly the greater cosmos. These alter-territories hold the promise of maximum separation from the 7.5 billion other people on the planet. In gravitating toward sites of absence, specifically the mine, the cave, the hole, where cameras are insufficient tools of capture (if not rendered entirely useless), film artists have found overlapping themes that go beyond traditional ecological concerns of diminishing resources and compromised landscapes.
Has work always embodies a prickly relationship to the state and assumed social conventions. (Its worth noting Has lifelong commitment to such agitation, including his participation in the anti-government protests of the 1960 April Revolution, before his turn to filmmaking.) If the filmmakers oeuvre remains thrilling and unique 40 years later it arguably hinges upon such dissidence, complimented by a style which uses western points of referenceparticularly European arthouse onesin service of a distinctly domestic cinema responding to questions concerning South Korean society, politics, and cultural policy.
Theres a subtle, syncopated rhyming of locations, movements, formats, background sounds (of bagpipes, drones, cicada mating calls, free jazz, a Jeep crossing the plain) and the contents of the artists voice itself. Her writing is closely cropped and spare, displacing an immeasurable amount of detail to subtext, invoking contact rather than actually orchestrating it.
The 19th Annual Coney Island Film Festival (CIFF) wrapped, per ritual, in an epic bumper car bash. Filmmakers, organizers and spectators found themselves colliding into one another at the Eldorado Auto Skooter rink on Surf Avenue. The event was thoroughly in the spirit of the festival, which does not simply take place at the storied amusement destination, but is of it in distinct ways. The cultural geography of the region shapes all aspects of exhibition and programming.