Apparently it took Lotte Reineger three years to make The Adventures of Prince Achmed, and after she would only work on shorter films. Watching, I kept drifting in and out of the narrative: she must have been dreaming the expressionistic blurs and oriental patterning.
There are some great sequences: the sorcerer seems to give birth to himself and then conjures his magic horse. He screws in a “lever” in its hindquarters which he pulls to fly downwards. But only he knows this: when he tricks Prince Achmed onto his horse and sends it up, it’s not until they reach the stars that he chances upon how to fly back to earth.
You watch this – the first full-length animated film – with a feeling of being detoxed. Just black silhouettes against monochrome. Simple techniques: a bit of blurring to indicate distance; so much cutting out. Lotte’s fingers must have ached every night.
It was the opening sequence: the lava-lamp-like bulges and sandy comings-together. Two balls of black danced together like something from the video for My Life in the Bush of Ghosts. Throughout the story, there came pulses of energy of anger that radiated out like widening rings from, the magic lamp. A finger directing malevolence.
- Alexandra Palace anenome animation anxiety arrogance art avant garde bibliophile blog blogging book collection bookshelves Brecht Carol Ann Duffy cave cave painting changing rooms civil war C K Williams clique collecting contemporary bntish poetry contemporary dance cornucopia creative writing embarrassed evangalism evangelical fear getting over it Graham Clifford heroine history jack london Jacob Polley Lascaux learning Martin Parr memory metamorphosis modern dance Munch's scream Nuclear ochre old ladies old lady orhan pamuk outsider poetry preacher premonition prose poem pseudo-essay Raymond Bradbury reading Richard Attenborough Russell Edson Salt Publishing Satie school sci-fi Science Fiction Seren skating Sphinx Stephen Dunn systems The Swindler thought Trakl T S Eliot unfair unfairness wisdom writing
- 3,356 hits