In the shadow of the galas and glitz of the overtly curated BFI London Film Festival, this month’s Kino felt even more like an act of anarchic defiance than usual. It was especially pleasing that the scruffy and excitable crowd was made up of so many Kino first-timers- welcome, friends! Can we hear you say ‘Death to the Programmer!’?
Mike Davies- III’D Eye
Jordan McKittrick- Two Girls One Song
Yavor Petkov- Green Man
Gaynor Perry- Physical Medium
Mary Nyambura- In Conversation
Joanne Woolgar- Mallets
Norman Tamkivi- Blood Red Meat
Olga Lagun- Me, Myself and I
Maria Andrews- Eine Kleine Naked Music
Daniel Racovolis- A Drive Down the Peninsula
Colin Russell- The Audition
Molly Brown- The Mystery of the Missing Armadillo
First up was the black and white expressionist horror film III’d Eye which took place, fittingly for a drizzly autumnal night, in a mulchy moonscape. Fresh from Hollywood Two Girls One Song resurrected the smart, sardonic sex appeal of Jane Russell, the audacity of which was somewhat mirrored in the eye-twinkling self-assurance of the Elvis Presley crooner in Green Man. Devoid of twinkling but full of contortions, the cult of Victorian spiritualism haunted Physical Medium which was at times both melancholy and grotesque and the emotive gestures of silent cinema were also given a nod by the comedic but uncanny wordlessness of In Conversation. In contrast Mallets brought us to our knees with sounds from another dimension as tiny rubber mallets stroked a massive gong, resounding with indescribable depth. Lacking any such stoicism or self-control was the hyper-anxious, tightly wound violence of Blood Red Meat, followed by the whimsical, musical metamorphosis/identity crisis of Me, Myself and I.
Fluidity of identity was explored in an entirely different manner in the beautiful Eine Klein Naked Music in which the motions of a naked swimming body were ethereal and corporeal in a manner that was truly cinematic. We then sped along Australia’s Mornington Peninsula in a manic timelapse in A Drive Down the Peninsula. Returning to the UK The Audition showed us the shrewd manipulations of a pre-teen girl who performed sabotage by sweets to take down her rival. The final film of Kino #67 was the imaginative, composite enigma of The Mystery of the Missing Armadillo which merged CGI and archival footage to present a satirical attack on aristocratic accents and conspiracy theorists alike.
This month’s collaborative film challenge was ‘Night of the Living Bread’ which we await with yeasty anticipation. In addition to us screening that doughy delight why not show your film at Kino? You just need to email firstname.lastname@example.org with your name, the title and the duration of your film. In the words of the aforementioned Jane Russell ‘Publicity can be terrible. But only if you don’t have any.’ Hope to see you next month.