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Narcissus

Canada, 1983 (MIFF 1984)

Director: Norman McLaren

Norman McLaren's 59th film, which opened the 1983 World Film Festival in Montreal, is one of the most ambitious in his long career, which started in 1933. The film is based on the Greek myth of the native youth who falls in love with his own image, and becomes the victim of excessive self love.

As in his previous dance film, "Pas De Deux', 1967, McLaren has chosen dance over animation as the more subtle vehicle for portraying human emotion. The dancers are principals from the Martha Graham Dance Company, the Cleveland Ballet, and Les Grands Ballets Canadians.

See also...

Canon

In the canon a melody begun by one voice or instrument is echoed by another, beginning one beat or several measures later than the one before. In this film, McLaren illustrates the principle of the ... More »

Lines Vertical - Lines Horizontal

Lines in pure design — an attempt by Norman McLaren to create art interesting pattern entirely from straight lines engraved directly on plain black film. ... The effect in is of decorous ballet ... More »

A Chairy Tale

McLaren used pixillation techniques in this comedic duel between a young boy and a kitchen chair. ... More »

Pas de deux

Two of Canada's leading ballet dancers, Margaret Mercier and Vincent Warren, are clad in white and their pas de deux filmed against a black stage. For his 48th experimental film, Norman McLaren plays ... More »

Short and Suite

The film is an expression of a mood, a heady recollection of an evening on the town rendered in rhythmic flights of light and colour. The alternation of the music's mood - gay or sad - is echoed by ... More »

Blinkety Blank

Arabesque-like images flash upon the screen, then suddenly disappear. An impression remains in the viewer's eye, like the burning of a bright light after it has been extinguished. A work of pure ... More »

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