The Funambulist

Search Results: "punishment park"

I already posted something about Punishment Park, not a long time ago, although it seemed that this movie should belong to HETEROTOPIA IN CINEMA… Directed by Peter Watkins in 1971, Punishment Park is filmed borrowing the documentary vocabulary in order to create an ambiguity on the reality of this story. In fact, the movie introduces a “state of emergency” decreed by Richard Nixon (inspired by the real McCarran Internal Security Act) and… Read More

Nine screenshots from the film The Diary of an Unknown Soldier by P. Watkins The Diary of an Unknown Soldier (1959) and The Forgotten Faces (1961) are the two first films of Peter Watkins. These two short films might appear as less ambitious as The War Game (1965), Punishment Park (1970) and La Commune (1999); however, they already carry the essence of Watkins’ cinema both in their form and in their content…. Read More

La Commune (de Paris, 1871) by Peter Watkins (see also an old article about Punishment Park) filmed in 1999 is the absolute reference for the NY Commune project as it addresses the question of the Paris Commune through a cinematographic work being itself a democratic construction. This film is basing its plot on a historical event and its reconstitution in order to question the contemporaneity of the class struggle. In order to… Read More

I got the chance last week, to curate a small  cine-club session organized by Danielle Willems (see her essay for the Funambulist) who was kind enough to ask me so. I chose two movies that I was not necessarily associating but whose connection will have to be made in an upcoming article about what Deleuze calls the Power of the False (La puissance du Faux). Those two films were Punishment Park (1971)… Read More

picture: The Void by R&Sie(n) 2005 In 2009, the South African film District 9 popularized a type of cinema that is interesting to question and put in relation with architecture: the docu-fiction. In order to please a broader audience, District 9  unfortunately gave up the technique in the middle of the narrative to come back to a more Hollywood-like type of movie, but the effect remains interesting in what it manages to… Read More

Yesterday, I attended to Geoff Manaugh (BLDG BLOG) brilliant lecture at Pratt in which he introduced the Quarantine workshop he is currently leading in the Storefront. I am very interested by this notion of quarantine in the materialization of fear and paranoia its implies. The potentiality for each building to become a quarantine station therefore a prison seems to me as embodying perfectly an ultimate state of totalitarianism. It reminds me of… Read More

Desert is something between an heterotopia and what I would call an atopia (a non-space). It defines itself as a territory whose limits seem to reach the infinite, which is not to say that it seems to have no limits. In fact, in the cinematographic desert, one always tries to reach the horizon as a tenacious impossible quest. I think an appropriate author to quote here is Jean-Marie Gustave Le Clezio (see… Read More


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