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8 x 8

USA, 1957 (MIFF 1958, Programme 47)

Director: Hans Richter

It all starts around a maple tree in Connecti¬cut, moved to a Paris studio &ndash: to a rooftop in Zurich, to a palazzo in Venice &ndash: to a villa in the South of France &ndash: to a swimming pool in Stamford. Conn. &ndash: and back to tire big maple tree. A trip to round up a fairytale for adults which mixed equal parts of Freud and Lewis Carroll with Venice. Virgins, Vienna and Venus, Cocteau and bullfights, surrealism, magic and beautiful women.

It is a "Chess Sonata for Film," eight improvisations with a prologue and epilogue, on the game of chess, in which kings and queens, knights and bishops, castles and pawns are played by a host of stars, internationally famous artists. Sight and sound not only out of this world but probably not even heard in the next.

8x8 gives free play to the imagination and stimulates your own. Symbols are sometimes obvious, sometimes baffling. The telephone, the call of the outer world of reality, struggles with the flute, the inner voice, the unconscious &ndash: suitcases stand for "all your belongings" etc.

8 x 8 is a film for cinema addicts and all those who believe in the uninhibited use of the still unexplored film medium.

See also...

DREAMS THAT MONEY CAN BUY

USA, 1944
A feature length film in which six fantastic visions, dreams, songs, and stories in colour, are united by an equally fantastic "frame-story" in black and white. This film realizes, unhampered by any … More »

Rhythm 94

Austria, 1994
A Muybridge-styled character walks across the screen left to right in time to a sound tone. As the pitch of the tone and its frequency changes, so does the shape and permutations of the char­acte… More »

Twilights

Japan, 1994
A true cinema of surrealism is often alluded to but is now rarely practised-Twilights genuinely returns to the film strategies of early Hans Richter and Luis Bunuel and reiterates Andre Breton's surr… More »

Rhythmus 99

Australia, 1999
Sam Landefs digitally animated impression of Hong Kong and New York, Rhythmus 99 is a kinetic tribute to the Cubist movement with more than a passing nod to Hans Richter's 1921 incarnation of an anim… More »

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