Category Archives: Screenings

Kodak Cinematic Award FOR VULTURE at Ann Arbor, reviewed at Edinburgh’S BLACK BOX & at MDFF SELECTS

 

Kim Knowles on vulture, Edinburgh International Film Festival, Blackbox: “Hoffman’s vulture” a beautiful and contemplative study of interspecies co-existence, where farm animals roam freely and the camera patiently observes their various interactions. Shot on 16mm film and processed with plants and flowers, it’s also an exercise in eco-sensitivity on so many levels.

Jordan Cronk, Off the Grid  (on Hoffman’s vulture)  Cinemascope 2020, MDFF Selects, TIFF Bell Light Box: …Nature plays a different but equally ominous role in vulture, an unassuming yet sublime featurette by veteran Canadian filmmaker Philip Hoffman. Assembled by the director over a period of two years, the film comprises 16mm footage shot on Hoffman’s farm in Mount Forest, Ontario that the filmmaker then photochemically processed with natural plant and flower pigments, resulting in a roughhewn, multivalent display of richly tinted and textured celluloid. To hear Hoffman tell it, his analog approach to cinema is part and parcel of a universal cycle of survival and sustainability; like a vulture, his film feasts on the very elements of its production, finding aesthetic nutrients in its every ingredient.

Following a brief shot of Homer Watson’s turn-of-the-20th-century landscape painting The Flood Gate, the film commences with a procession of slow, Wavelength-esque zooms towards a variety of animal life (pigs, horses, cows, goats, chickens) before shifting focus to take in the larger ecosystem surrounding the farm fauna: overhead, birds of prey patiently circle, while in the distance, tractors plow the land and farmers work the fields. The film’s landscape imagery occasionally recalls Nicolas Rey’s autrement, la Molussie (2012) or the work of the late Peter Hutton, though the quietly swelling audio frequencies—the sound is credited to Luca Santilli and Clint Enns, with a mix by experimental filmmaker Isiah Medina (88:88)—portend something far less comforting. Like Wilcox, vulture forgoes direct sound; instead, the distant din of fluttering distortion echoes across the stereo field like helicopter blades on the horizon, with the occasional sample of a young boy’s voice emerging from the void as if summoned from another dimension. Before long, those unassuming establishing shots (which appear mostly untouched by any post-production techniques) give way to a series of colour montages that cut together heavily treated images of plant, animal, and human life from around the farm—an idyllic vision disrupted by the subliminal threat of violence and industrialization. Rather than let the threat loom, Hoffman reworks a selection of this same material for a bracing coda in which the previously placid imagery is subjected to a caustic combination of rapid edits and atonal musical flourishes. (Unsurprisingly, both the sound and edit for this section is credited to Medina.) “Vultures live together, and they don’t fight, they help each other,” the boy says at one point—a perfectly succinct bit of childlike wisdom for a world in which pleasure and peril often go hand in hand.

More on vulture..

Read Review by Andrew Robertson, Edinburgh International Film Festival

Read review by Mónica Delgado …

DocPoint Masterclass and “Introspective” in Finland

Five Screenings at DocPoint:

I – Journeys Away

II – Picturing Home

III – Experimental Processes

IV – All Fall Down

V – To That Which Is To Come

Antti Alanen Film Diary:

on Philip Hoffman’s passing through/torn formations   read here

on Experimental Processes  read here

* Avek article in 2016 Kasikirjoitus pg 25-28 (48-51)

 

Philip Hoffman  conducted a Masterclass in Helsinki at Docpoint 2016, in accordance with 5 screenings of his work in a special “Introspective” programme

See more at Docpoint’s website for the masterclass, and the blog.

 

Café Ex: The Films of Philip Hoffman

On Thursday December 10, 2015, Philip Hoffman will attend a screening of some of his work as part of Café Ex:

Inaugurated in 1998, the eighteenth season of this ongoing visiting artist series presents artist-curated evenings of independent experimental film and video in the intimate atmosphere of Club SAW. Once again, the series features Canadian experimental cinema, with guest filmmakers presenting their work and engaging in extensive discussions with audience members for a “pay-what-you-can” admission.

More information can be found at the Canadian Film Institute’s website.

WNDX: WINNIPEG’S FESTIVAL OF FILM AND VIDEO ART

wndx_2009_poster_4eventsHailing Hoffman: Legendary experimental filmmaker a focus of local WNDX Festival – “Philip Hoffman, one of Canada’s most critically respected filmmakers, is coming to Winnipeg to attend a retrospective of his short works and a screening of his first feature. Known for his distinctly personal approach, Hoffman has made over 18 short films, has had more than a dozen retrospectives of his work across the world, teaches film production at York University and is the founder of the Film Farm, an experimental filmmakers retreat. He will be screening his new film, All Fall Down, which recently premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival to terrific reviews, at WNDX (Winnipeg’s festival of film and video art) this week.” by Ryan Simmons

Beyond the blockbuster: Legendary experimental filmmaker a focus of local WNDX Festival: by Aaron Graham (Uptown Magazine, Winnipeg’s Online Source for Arts, Entertainment & News)

BERLIN INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL

Berlin_FF_title_englishForu

Philip Hoffman’s latest production, All Fall Down (2009, HDV) screens as part of the Berlinale’s Forum Expanded program, a series exploring traditional image formats in the digital age.

The feature-length film is an experimental documentary that juxtaposes the lives of two people separated by a century but linked by a farm house in Southern Ontario. It explores the characters through a variety of archival materials: diaries, landscape paintings, photographs, heritage films, poems, phone messages, maps, historical reenactments and songs that express the complexity of time and the politics of land.