Friday, October 28, 2011
FRIDAY FILM AND VIDEO POEM: 'Ground' by Ginnetta Correli
direct link: Ground
Written & Narrated: Alastair Cook
Directed & Edited: Ginnetta Correli
Soundtrack: Pierrepoint’s Epitaph by Dirk Drieson
Ground has an impenetrable quality. The film imagery, poem and reading approach each other without quite meeting. In that circle of visual and verbal imagery and the emotion of the voice of the reader, we witness a flame dancing without knowing who lit it, who blows on it, or why it goes out, if it does.
Something profound happens. But what? Is the poem notes on death and what resurrects us through life? Or the dream of a life?
At the end, the man... but you must watch to see this.
I am reminded of Médem's Lucía y el sexo, where the island rests on a cacophony of unmappable caves that constitute its base and that are not attached to the seabed, but float, and where one of the characters disappears forever into.
As in dream, the images in Ground are vivid, strong, and reveal something important if elusive. The images of the poem and the film are are strewn in a landscape of inner symbolism. A motorcycle. An empty road. The shadow of a figure, perhaps the filmmaker filming the scene. A small white snake lying in the road. A man holding onto the lip of rock in a cave hole. A gloved hand picking up the poisonous snake and placing it carefully on the shoulder of the road. An abandoned hut where the outside seems inside, empty save for the crumpled paper of the poet, a bed of rocks and light.
This is a surreal filmpoem; it has a European art film feel to it. Like when watching an Almodóvar, forget logic, for a rational approach to understanding won't reveal anything. As you seek to embrace the meaning of the film, you find mindfulness here like a Zen koan.
You can't quite put it together. Rather, feel the deep angst the film produces. That's where the film is unfolding in your consciousness as a message, a predicament, a riddler of the paradoxes of life.
Or the immanence of death.
Ground is hauntingly beautiful, in a disturbing way. In the embracing mindfulness, a poetry of poison, death, loss, and beauty, all of which is natural, found in the natural world, amidst a surreality. We feel cross-currents, disambiguations, and yet the over-arching journey metaphor of Cook's minimalist poetry, and the bond of love he speaks of, yes, living is like this. Simply a superb film.
Do watch. The two minutes and 35 seconds will become a dream you are having.
Ginnetta Correli's blog: beatie's journal.
The poem is composed of haiku written by Alastair; his blog, written in my hand is well worth exploring too.