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AUSTRIAN AVANT-GARDE CINEMA EXPLORED, PART 1
von Donato Totaro in OFF SCREEN, Volume 9, Issue 11 , 30.11.2005
 









48 Heads from the Szondi-Test






Kren (Left) vs. Pollock (Right)








15/67 TV



One of the most politically resonant films on the Kren DVD is 20/68 Shatzi (16mm, 2:29). The film begins with grey and white blotches, interspersed with black frames. An indecipherable image slowly gives way to one central image: a photograph of a concentration camp officer standing on the right overlooking a corpse-littered ground. The image becomes once again grainy and less clear as Kren moves the camera progressively closer to the photograph, as if to suggest the way collective memory can fade. Only now that we know what the image is, it lingers in our mind. Haunting.
















Temporary relief is provided when the scene cuts back to a close-up of the finger as it is dipped slowly into the milk bowl, only now we see blood mix with the milk. The scene cuts to a long shot and then thirty seconds from end the woman mysteriously disappears into thin air. The camera slowly zooms into the photo of the two children. Now we can make out the details of the photo: the little girl on the right is embracing the hand of a younger baby in a crib on the left. Again, we can only interpret this young girl to be the woman (there is a strong physical similarity). We learn nothing of who this woman is, which only makes us wonder what could have led this woman to such self-mutilation.











To purchase any of these DVDs please visit the Index website.

Part 2

Endnotes





Author Bio:

Donato Totaro has been the editor of the online film journal Offscreen since its inception in 1997. Totaro received his PhD in Film & Television from the University of Warwick (UK) and is a part-time lecturer in Film Studies at Concordia University (Montreal, Canada). He has published on recent Asian cinema, the cinema of Andrei Tarkovsky, the horror genre and is currently preparing a manuscript entitled Time and the Long Take in Narrative Cinema.


 
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