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En plein air2014

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  • 3.5
The Rohmer-ian reality of everyday ersatz courtship.

Member Reviews (2)

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top reviewer

When the first thing you think...this is un-real. Stopped after a couple of minutes. It's not a very adept stab at portraying part of academic culture. All I can say is "birds do it, bees do it/ even educated fleas do it, let's do it..."

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top reviewer

I always somehow wanted to be an art major in spite of knowing with metaphysical certitude that I had not a ghost of a chance of ever being a visual artist given my utter lack of talent in that area. I became a figure model after being told by a friend that it has harder to get men to model than women. She convinced me to apply and I did. I thought of it as an excuse to hang out with art majors, be nude in public without being arrested and get paid for nothing other than making it a point not to move. It was a fascinating experience; the best way to become not invisible but more "not there" in spite of standing in a room full of people is to sell these people the right to stare in service of their learning process. The job was an ethnographer's dream. I heard all the lessons so many times that I still talk as if I can draw or paint, even using drawing or painting as something known that I can use to explain something unknown. This is hilarious coming from a half-blind school-teacher who stopped developing as an artist with stick-figures back in second grade.

Anyway"""". I got a chance to be a fly-on-the wall in an art department. This film captures the feel and texture of everyday interaction between some female students and some male instructors disturbingly well. This pattern had a lot to do, at least where I modeled, with most students being young women and many instructors being older men who still liked to think of themselves as being as cool, hip and with-it (the arcane terminology is being used ironically) as they thought they were when they were their students' age. In this environment, mid-life crisis starts early and can last for decades. This instructor does not see himself as a sexual predator or his intrusions into the emotional lives of his students as damaging or unprofessional. But, the student who is the focus of his attentions in this snap-shot probably does or will at some later point. This guy mentors young talent the same way you farm mushrooms; keep them in the dark and feed them lots of bull-shit. Assuming that he has tenure, this behavior, even continuing as a stable pattern over many years, will most likely have no negative professional consequences.