Solomon and Tummler are two teenagers killing time in Xenia, Ohio, a small town that has never recovered from the tornado that ravaged the community in the 1970s.
23 Jan Gummo (1997)
She’s Been Dead a Long Time
‘Man with the Movie Camera’ meets ‘La Notte’ meets ‘Harvey’ through ‘Donnie Darko’ — and is as effective as any of them. And as tuned to video as other masters are to film. I was really impressed, and that’s saying a lot.
Other comments can concern themselves with the modern elements of this matterwise, the angst of presenting an environment permeated with angst. What interests me is that actual filmmaking technique. It strikes me as very effective, from the nearly subliminal bell (copied from PT Andersen) to the varying video techniques to the snappy incongruously happy editing. Video qualities went beyond their basic quality of denoting documentary. (Compare this to ‘Drop Dead Gorgeous.’.) The video quality here establishes a rhythm you don’t get with flat film.
Did they know that cats are a longstanding symbol of artistic creativity? Did they know that Xenia (Athena) is the goddess of wisdom? That Greeks considered tornadoes the penis of God? That the offspring are demented kids intent on destroying their own worlds?
This is strong work, lyrically hopeless. I’ll check out ‘Kids.’ I think this guy is worth following.
Posted in 2002
Ted’s Evaluation — 3 of 3: Worth watching.