Dada Cinema (1921-1926) [Repost]
DVD5 | ~75 min | MPEG2 720x576 PAL 4:3 ~7836 kbps avg | audio: Neutral | Dolby AC3 2 ch ~192 Kbps | 4.25 GB
DVDRip | AVI | ~75 min | DivX 688x528 ~2099 kbps avg | audio: Neutral | MP3 2 ch ~128 Kbps | 1.17 GB
Art-house, Animation, Short, Music, Surrealism
Dada was an art movement that sprang up in Zurich Switzerland roughly around 1916. It emerged largely in response to the atrocities and insanity of World War 1, and sought to find and experiment with new forms of expression in an attempt to rejuvenate the creative act. After the end of the war in 1918, Dada spread to Germany (Berlin, Cologne, Hanover), where it was to rebel against the increasingly militaristic and nationalistic policies of the emerging far right as typified by the eventual rise to power of Hitler's Nazi party. Dada was important in an Art historical context in that it paved the way and laid the foundations for surrealism which was to follow. Many of the artists active in dada later becoming influential and active within surrealism. Although Dada groups existed in several forms for longer and shorter periods in other areas such in Paris, Italy, the Netherlands and New York. It's spiritual and historical home has always been in Zurich (Switzerland), with a special mention going to post world w r 1 Germany. It is for this reason that this website will largely concentrate on these two areas of the Dada movement.
Directors: Hans Richter, Viking Eggeling, Man Ray, Ferdinand Leger, Rene Clair, Francis Picabia, Dudley Murphy. IMDb
Rhythmus 21 (1921-1924)
Hans Richter, 3.5 min, Germany
Richter's earliest experiments were hardly more than tests, Rhythmus 21 is a serious abstract animation composed solely of squares and rectangles that change shape. Artists like Luis Bunuel & Fritz Lang were influenced by him. Hans Richter was a painter, graphic artist, avant-gardist, film-experimenter and producer. He was influenced by Cubism and Expressionism and joined in the Dadaist movemet in the 1916. Richter’s collaboration with Viking Eggeling on drawings, abstract sketches, and most importantly on ‘scroll paintings’, provided the inspiration for Rhythmus 21. The original film was roughly two minutes long. Over the next two years Richter worked on the film and extended it to almost seven minutes. Before October 16th, 1927 when the film was screened at the Film Society in London, Richter divided the film in two parts and later on called it Rhythmus 21 and Rhythmus 23. In the following year Richter created another chapter, Rhytmus 25, which didn't survive. These forms appear in very simple to very complex compositions-from the beginning shots where the squares appear with the frame. In Rhythmus 23 there are more angle and line overlays rather than adherence to the squares as in Rhytmus 21. It's very interesting how these short films resemble some aspects of 1950's beatnik art & 1960's op art. The final effect is a subversion of the cinematic illusion of depth. Richter creates a precise rhythm with the movement of these shapes and suggests connections through opposites: black/white, left/right, top/bottom and creates visual associations with geometric patterns.
Symphonie Diagonale (1921-1927)
Viking Eggeling, 7 min, Germany
A tilted figure, consisting largely of right angles at the beginning, grows by accretion, with the addition of short straight lines and curves which sprout from the existing design. The figure vanishes and the process begins again with a new pattern, each cycle lasting one or two seconds. The complete figures are drawn in a vaguely Art Deco style and could be said to resemble any number of things, an ear, a harp, panpipes, a grand piano with trombones, and so on, only highly stylized. The tone is playful and hypnotic.
Le Retour A La Raison (1923)
Man Ray, 2 min, France
Experimental film, white specks and shapes gyrating over a black background, a light-striped torso, a gyrating eggcrate. One of the first Dadaist films.
Rene Clair, Francis Picabia, 20 min, France
An absolute surrealistic movie. Somebody gets killed, his coffin gets out of control and after a surrelistic chase it stops. The person gets out of it and let everybody who followed the coffin disapear.
Le Ballet Mecanique (1924)
Fernand Leger, Dudley Murphy, 14 min, France
A pulsing, kaleidoscope of images set to an energetic soundtrack. A young women swings in a garden; a woman's face smiles. The rest is spinning cylinders, pistons, gears and turbines, kitchen objects in concentric circles or rows - pots, pan lids, and funnels, cars passing overhead, a spinning carnival ride. Over and over, a heavy-set woman climbs stairs carrying a large bag on her shoulder. An Art Deco cartoon figure appears, dancing. This is a world in motion, dominated by mechanical and repetitive images, with a few moments of solitude in a garden.
Emak Bakia (1926)
Man Ray, 17 min, France
A long series of unrelated images, revolving, often distorted: lights, flowers, nails. A lightboard appears from time to time carrying the news of the day. Then, an eye. A woman in a car drives along country roads. Farm animals. She descends from the car, again and again. Images: dancing legs, seashore, swimming fish, geometric shapes, cut glass. A man removes his starched collar. It rotates. A girl has garishly painted eyes. No, she's only fooling. Those were her eyelids.
Vormittagsspuk (Ghosts before breakfast) (1927)
Hans Richter, 6 min, Germany
Hans Richter, noted for his abstract shorts, has everyday objects rebelling against their daily routine.