Illuminating portrait of the legendary avant-garde filmmaker.
Stan Brakhage (1933-2003) was possibly the most important filmmaker of the avant-garde and one of the greatest artists of our time. From 1952, at the age of nineteen, until his death, Brakhage created more than 400 films, ranging in length from several seconds to several hours, constantly and consistently redefining cinematic art. The film BRAKHAGE explores the depth and breadth of the filmmaker's genius, the exquisite splendor of his films, his magic personal charm, his aesthetic fellow travelers and the influence his work has had on generations of other creators. While touching on significant moments in Brakhage's biography, the film celebrates Brakhage's visionary genius and explores the extraordinary artistic possibilities of cinema, a medium mostly known only for its commercial applications in the form of narratives, cartoons, documentaries and advertising. BRAKHAGE combines excerpts from Brakhage's films and films of other avant-garde filmmakers (George Kuchar, Jonas Mekas, Willie Varela, Bruce Elder and others); interviews with Brakhage, his friends, family, colleagues and critics; archival footage of Brakhage spanning the past thirty-five years; and location shooting in Colorado and New York. BRAKHAGE was directed by Jim Shedden, produced by Alexa-Frances Shaw and executive produced by Ron Mann. An original score was composed for the film by long-time Brakhage associate and noted avant-garde composer James Tenney.
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Excellent overview of his life/ideas/art. It should be pointed out that watching his films in video is a considerably different experience from watching them projected from film.
Stan Brakhage has not only pioneered a very unique style of avant-garde film making, but has influenced film and cinema across the board, including major directors such as Francis Ford Coppola. A very insightful documentary behind the thought process and inspiration of an artistic genius. Makes me appreciate his films all over again.
Fascinating look at a true innovator and original voice in cinema.