Saturday, December 25, 2010

STRICNINA (1969, Pierfrancesco Bargellini, Italy, A+)

" The story: the death of a dog, filmed subsequently, a violent death because it is caused in a veterinarian’s clinic; a man in a white coat injects the strychnine… The film: afterwards there’s a moment when the animal’s eye emit violet-blue flashes, then nothing, but only apparently. Now everything is sweetness, what continues is death: the voyage into death – the transfiguration – the images that return, only to disappear from memory, emerge from the recollections in a purifying vortex that take them back to their essence. It’s the gradual breaking down of the image into form and then into colours and then into light and finally it’s the beginning: the vibration that is the matrix of sound of light of life. It’s the cosmos that makes that meat good to eat for a million years. (P. Bargellini)

By filming the death of his dog, Piero Bargellini pays tribute to Stan Brakhage, who, in his film Sirius Remembered, did pretty much the same thing with his dog Sirius. Stricnina is a film from 1969 that Bargellini had “forgotten” to print; the admiration and the affection of Filmstudio, in an embrace of the deluxe poor, financed a print of the one and only copy in 1973. But Piero believed that developing and printing quite often means revolutionizing the material that was shot and edited in the camera. Stricnina is an exorcism (a bit of magic in the manipulation of the technique) to save the soul of a dog. (Adriano Aprà) "

--a retrospective of Pierfrancesco Bargellini

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