“It’s between frames where cinema speaks.” -Peter Kubelka, 1967

“Hollywood,” sometimes known as “the dream factory,” makes ritualistic-dramas in celebration of mass memory–very like the rituals of tribal people […] But the amateur photographs the persons, places, and objects of his love and the events of his happiness and personal importance in a gesture that can act directly and solely according to the needs of memory.[…] He is free, if he but accept the responsibility of his freedom, to work as the spirit of his god, or his memory, or his particular needs, move him. It is for this reason that I believe any art of the cinema must inevitably arise from the amateur, “home-movie” making medium.” – Stan Brakhage

Leisure and Privilege

As Apple prepares to release the iWatch, which promises to blend aspects of conspicuous glamour-tech consumption and the metrics of the “quantified self” movement in daring new ways (I don’t know all the details, but it will make it possible to track things like steps and heart rate continuously and fashionably for the first time…), I have heard more discussion than…


It’s been awhile since I added something to the “DOC” tab of this site, but I’m very proud of this short documentary I created for artist Jess Hirsch, on behalf of Forecast Public Art, via IFP.

Seasonality & Competition

[note: I began this post a month or two ago, in the deep dark of winter. All the snow is melting outside as I get around to finishing it. Which actually perfectly demonstrates the point below.] I just spoke with a younger friend who recently graduated from college and is living the bi-coastal film production dream, crewing on features in LA…

Art and Politics

To change what Rancière calls the “cartography of the perceptible, thinkable, and the feasible,” art must maintain its distance, a withdrawal from any clearly defined political agenda. Only under the auspices of such aesthetic separation can art’s politics unfold, a politics which, in Rancière’s sense, has the potential to “reframe the given by inventing new ways of making sense of…

More on the Myth of Monomyth

When I wrote this in 2013 about Joseph Campbell’s compelling Hero’s Journey theory (which has become the basis for most mainstream blockbuster filmmaking), I felt a bit like a voice crying out in the wilderness. We may all be sick of the reluctant-gifted-hero-goes-on-quest storyline, but it seem pretty non-negotiable as the Narrative of Our Times. Though it’s probably not a new…

Film 45 Podcast

Jeremy Wilker, a Minnesota-based cinematographer and director, read my essay in Minnesota Playlist, and invited me to discuss local filmmaking with him for an episode of his podcast, Film 45. It’s so different to be asked questions and answer them in real-time, rather than having an opportunity to reflect, draft, revise! But I think, for the most part, it coheres.