Chris Marker 1921-2012

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jorencain
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Re: Chris Marker 1921-2012

#26 Post by jorencain » Tue Jul 31, 2012 2:44 pm

In a sad coincidence, Bergman and Antonioni also died on July 30, 5 years ago.

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swo17
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Re: Chris Marker 1921-2012

#27 Post by swo17 » Tue Jul 31, 2012 4:28 pm

Marker died on the 29th though.

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FilmFanSea
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Re: Chris Marker 1921-2012

#28 Post by FilmFanSea » Tue Jul 31, 2012 5:12 pm

I've had several DVDs of Marker's films on my "buy" list for some time, so last night I purchased The Last Bolshevik, One Day in the Life of Andrei Arsenevich, and Grin Without a Cat in his memory. Have either Letter from Siberia or ¡Cuba Sí! been released anywhere on DVD?

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Re: Chris Marker 1921-2012

#29 Post by knives » Tue Jul 31, 2012 5:59 pm

They haven't though I remember seeing a poor copy of Letter from Siberia lying around youtube or some similar site.

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Re: Chris Marker 1921-2012

#30 Post by LQ » Wed Aug 01, 2012 12:52 pm

I'd like to share this lovely little excerpt from the first episode of Agnès Varda's doc series Agnès de ci de là Varda that I saw thanks to this blog post - Varda takes a trip through le désordre magnifique of Chris Marker's atelier. It's in French, but makes for wonderful visual viewing if you don't speak the language.

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Re: Chris Marker 1921-2012

#31 Post by NABOB OF NOWHERE » Wed Aug 01, 2012 1:04 pm

LQ wrote:I'd like to share this lovely little excerpt from the first episode of Agnès Varda's doc series Agnès de ci de là Varda that I saw thanks to this blog post - Varda takes a trip through le désordre magnifique of Chris Marker's atelier. It's in French, but makes for wonderful visual viewing if you don't speak the language.
A little trawl a bit closer to home on the Agnes Varda thread would have revealed that this and the whole series is available from Arte with english subs. But glad you have made the link to the excerpt available

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Re: Chris Marker 1921-2012

#32 Post by The Elegant Dandy Fop » Wed Aug 01, 2012 1:09 pm

While on the discussion of Chris Marker's films available online, one of my favorites of his, The Koumiko Mystery is on YouTube, albeit it from a VHS that's been copied over several dozen times from a 16mm print that probably wasn't in great shape to begin with. Though that shouldn't hold anyone off from watching this masterpiece.

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Re: Chris Marker 1921-2012

#33 Post by Adam » Thu Aug 02, 2012 12:24 am

I thought Letter from Siberia was the film that he didn't want circulated any more.

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Re: Chris Marker 1921-2012

#34 Post by Black Hat » Thu Aug 02, 2012 6:03 am

There used to be a recurring skit on the Craig Kilborn* show where one of the writers would come out and Kilborn would ask him question after question about an array of topics, where he would reply 'it sucks Craig, it sucks, everything sucks'. Being a deeply cynical teenager at the time I, of course, ate this skit up. Think the writer's name was Alec Sulkin, his deadpan delivery was hilarious.

It was around this time that I rediscovered French New Wave, after previously shunning it when my parents tried to introduce to me it. As I went thru the work of these incredible filmmakers I inevitably came across Marker. "Hmm what's up with this dude, why's he so mysterious, how on earth can anybody love cats so much? I can't stand the selfish furry creatures." Then I watched Sans Soleil. The deeply cynical teenager then realized for the first time in his life that as much as there is in the world to be dissatisfied about, if not disgusted by, that there was that much more you can express, providing a channel of connection to an otherwise tuned frequency.

I apologise for the personal anecdote, I don't mean for it to be hyperbolic but, Chris Marker's passing really sucks, everything sucks.

For the New York area peeps Light Industry over in Brooklyn is doing a free all day tribute screening of his films Sunday August 26.

http://www.lightindustry.org/forchrismarker" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

*yes I realize this is probably the first and only time someone will connect Chris Marker to Craig Kilborn.

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Re: Chris Marker 1921-2012

#35 Post by FilmFanSea » Fri Aug 03, 2012 4:47 pm

Marker's essay on Vertigo is among the most elegant and perceptive I've ever read.

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Alan Smithee
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Re: Chris Marker 1921-2012

#36 Post by Alan Smithee » Fri Aug 03, 2012 7:19 pm

NYC people Spectacle Theater is also showing Grin Without A Cat on Tuesday.
http://spectacletheater.com/148129481#grin" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

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Re: Chris Marker 1921-2012

#37 Post by karmajuice » Sat Aug 04, 2012 12:28 am

Marker's essay on Vertigo is among the most elegant and perceptive I've ever read.
Agreed. I've always adored that essay, and when a friend told me she didn't understand the appeal of the film, I sent her that essay.

In fact, that whole site is a treasure trove. Several wonderful pieces either by Marker, about Marker, or about his films and various other endeavors.

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Re: Chris Marker 1921-2012

#38 Post by kidc85 » Sat Aug 04, 2012 9:06 am

Adam wrote:I thought Letter from Siberia was the film that he didn't want circulated any more.
Why was this? I watched a (terrible, pirate) copy of this the other day, and thought it was just brilliant. The footage repeated three times, transformed each time by narration spouting variations on propaganda, was hilarious.

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Re: Chris Marker 1921-2012

#39 Post by magicmarker » Sat Aug 04, 2012 12:30 pm

Just to clarify: Marker did not disown Letter from Siberia but rather Description of a Struggle, his essay-film on an Israeli commune. Following the '67 war, Marker lost his enthusiasm for what he saw as a potential model of functioning communism as he became more aware of the plight of the Palestinians.

As far as I know, Letter from Siberia has never been released on DVD. I hear that there was a VHS version in France at some point, but have no verification of this. New Yorker used to distribute a 16mm version, (I think... maybe it was 35mm), and I believe that a video tape of that version is what is circulating on Youtube and torrent sites (same with the Kumiko Mystery). Besides what is available from Criterion La Jetee/Sans Soleil, there are the Icarus Films DVDs, the Arte Video Dvds, the Editions Montparnasse Groupe Medvedkine set, and the Optimum Level Five, as well as some Spanish and Italian DVDs that repeat what is above. My big hope is that one day we will see an Eclipse set of Marker's essay-films from the '50s and '60s.

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Re: Chris Marker 1921-2012

#40 Post by Esfir » Sun Aug 19, 2012 6:57 pm

Can you suggest a site that has Letter From Siberia. I'm having a tough time finding one and I really need to see it right away.
thanks so much.

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Re: Chris Marker 1921-2012

#41 Post by Adam » Mon Aug 20, 2012 12:54 am

Hi,

I've been working on a tribute series in Los Angeles with Filmforum and the American Cinematheque.
It turns out that he disowned (as you put it) Description of s Struggle. One can view it at the Israel Film Archive, your next time in Jerusalem, but no copies are available for distribution. AND he also pulled Letter from Siberia from circulation. Bootlegs do live in the world, and old VHS copies. I've never seen it, and am still searching.

This series will be Sept 13-16 at the Egyptian Theater in LA, and it looks like it will mainly be the films available for distribution in the US from New Yorker and Icarus. We can't get prints from Europe yet. Marker was opposed to any tributes, and the distributors in France aren't releasing films yet (or are on vacation in August). I had been hoping to include some rarities like Sunday in Peking and The Koumiko Mystery, but they won't happen yet. We might do it again with new films next year.

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Re: Chris Marker 1921-2012

#42 Post by magicmarker » Mon Aug 20, 2012 6:05 pm

I had not heard about Marker pulling Letter from Siberia from circulation. Do you have a source for this? I'd be interested in following up on why and when this occurred.

There was a time you could find it on most of the popular torrent sites, but I could not find it after a quick look this time. I should note that the torrent version apparently has an English audio track. I have only seen it at the Bibliotheque Nationale in Paris, where they have digitized a 35mm print that you can view through a computer terminal.

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Re: Chris Marker 1921-2012

#43 Post by Adam » Tue Aug 21, 2012 12:40 am

Source: Argos Films, the distributor.
Unless I misunderstand something, which is conceivable. Some things are unavailable right now, and I'm still waiting for confirmation on which of those happen to be unavailable right now, and which exactly were really pulled from circulation. I remember the story of Letter from Siberia being pulled as something not in relation to his death, but previously. I too cannot find any note of it, so I accept that I might be wrong, and will verify,

It does look like one can buy Description of a Struggle though, VHS only, without public screening rights.
http://www.jer-cin.org.il/Video_Eng.aspx" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

Argos's Chris Marker titles:
http://en.unifrance.org/directories/per ... ilmography" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

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Re: Chris Marker 1921-2012

#44 Post by Adam » Tue Aug 21, 2012 2:09 pm

Just confirmed with Gwen at the American Cinematheque, who had been the one communicating with Florence at Argos (Gwen being French). Marker didn't want Letter from Siberia being shown anymore.

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Re: Chris Marker 1921-2012

#45 Post by magicmarker » Tue Aug 21, 2012 2:25 pm

Thank you for this information. I will try ordering Description of a Struggle from the Jerusalem Cinematheque, though I cannot seem to do so directly from the site.

And thanks for the confirmation that Marker did not want Letter from Siberia distributed. I had not heard that before, though it certainly makes sense. I wonder when this occurred.

Wonderful that you are organizing a tribute. Too bad I'm too far afield to see it.

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Re: Chris Marker 1921-2012

#46 Post by Documaniaque » Tue Aug 21, 2012 7:08 pm

magicmarker wrote: I have only seen it at the Bibliotheque Nationale in Paris, where they have digitized a 35mm print that you can view through a computer terminal.
They also have Si j'avais quatre dromadaires which is another rare one, entirely constituted of photos like La Jetée.
Adam wrote:Just confirmed with Gwen at the American Cinematheque, who had been the one communicating with Florence at Argos (Gwen being French). Marker didn't want Letter from Siberia being shown anymore.
I thought he'd "disowned" Cuba Si as well, though according to that Unifrance link above that one is still distributed.

Let's face it, as brilliant a filmaker as he was (I'm speaking as an unreserved fan myself) he was far from irreproachable politically. I'm guessing he was embarrassed by a certain leftist naïveté in the string of early films he made in politically repressive countries (Russia, Cuba, Israel) and later tried to excise them from his oeuvre. He was also, if I'm not mistaken, a maoist for years (so were the crème of the left-bank intellectuals in the 70s, but that doesn't mean it wasn't one of the more retarded leftist fads of the era).
Adam wrote:I had been hoping to include some rarities like Sunday in Peking and The Koumiko Mystery, but they won't happen yet. We might do it again with new films next year.
Why not include some of the films by other directors that he wrote the commentary for: Vive la baleine by Ruspoli is excellent (there are unconfirmed rumours of a Ruspoli box from Editions Montparnasse) or Valparaiso which was in the Ivens box.

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Re: Chris Marker 1921-2012

#47 Post by Adam » Tue Aug 21, 2012 9:03 pm

Nice idea, and you're not the first to make it. Let's see if I can fit them in this September. They might have to wait for a Part 2 when some of the other films become available (ones that don't have American distributors but weren't pulled from circulation.) I've seen Valparaiso, which is marvelous.

Current notion, not entirely locked, but save your dates in Southern California:
A TRIBUTE TO CHRIS MARKER
September 13-15 & 17, 2012, at the Egyptian Theatre
Presented in collaboration with Los Angeles Filmforum


Thursday, September 13 – 7:30 PM CHRIS MARKER
30th Anniversary! SANS SOLEIL, 1982, New Yorker, 100 min. Dir. Chris Marker.

Friday, September 14 – 7:30 PM CHRIS MARKER
A GRIN WITHOUT A CAT (LE FOND DE L’AIR EST ROUGE), 1977, Icarus Films, 180 min.

Saturday, September 15 – 7:30 PM CHRIS MARKER
“La Jetee” (1964, New Yorker, 30 min).
“Junkopia” (1981, 6 min.)
REMEMBRANCE OF THINGS TO COME (LE SOUVENIR D’UN AVENIR), 2001, First Run/Icarus Films, 42 min. Dirs. Yannick Bellon, Chris Marker.

“A Chris Marker Bestiary” (1994, Icarus Films, 18 min.), including:
“Cat Listening to Music,” (1990, 3 min.)
“An Owl Is An Owl” (1990, 3 min.)
“Zoo Piece” (1990, 3 min.)
“Bullfight in Okinawa” (1992, 4 min.)
“Slon Tango” (1993, 4 min.)

CASE OF THE GRINNING CAT, 2004, Icarus Films, 58 min. .

Monday, September 17 – 7:30 PM CHRIS MARKER
Double Feature: THE LAST BOLSHEVIK, 1993, Icarus Films, 116 min.
ONE DAY IN THE LIFE OF ANDREI ARSENOVICH, Icarus Films, 1999, 55 min.

I really hope to be able to show at least Le Joli Mai, Koumiko Mystery, Sunday in Peking, and Si j'avais quatre dromadaires when we revisit it. I'm pretty sure that The Train Rolls On was also pulled from circulation, although much of it was rolled into The Last Bolshevik.

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Alan Smithee
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Re: Chris Marker 1921-2012

#48 Post by Alan Smithee » Thu Aug 23, 2012 6:35 pm

http://www.nybooks.com/blogs/nyrblog/20 ... is-marker/" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
Hoberman on Marker

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Re: Chris Marker 1921-2012

#49 Post by Black Hat » Fri Aug 24, 2012 12:27 am

That's interesting about Letter From Siberia as Light Industry is planning on screening it on Sunday.

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Re: Chris Marker 1921-2012

#50 Post by Adam » Fri Aug 24, 2012 12:38 am

They are screening an old VHS. I asked.
Still, would be nice to see it.

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