Paris From Behind

1999, 25 min, color, sound

Writes Antek Walczak: "A detective-mystery movie adapted from Edgar Allan Poe's 'Purloined Letter' that purposely forgets the central premise of the story: the invisibility of hiding something obviously in plain sight. The Dupin twins, Augustine and Nicolas, confront another baffling case in their hometown, Paris-on-the-Seine (played by New York-on-the-Hudson). In quite ordinary surroundings, the viewer is offered a parade of obscure or illegible references on monarchy, immigration, Theodore Kaczynski, advertising, genius, fascism, Joseph Beuys, Raymond Roussel - as witness to a literary adaptation that goes way off track and gets mired in fun and games. The fun of long tedious descriptions of the futile investigations by the police while subway cars push video wipes across the screen. The social games of chance and one-upmanship that are easy exercises for non-actors who can't memorize their lines. Using anything and everyone at hand - an art dealer, a fashion editor, an actress, a poet, a museum of natural history, a junkyard dog, pigeons, a defunct ferry - the video takes the potential impatience that lurks behind every act of plotting and atomizes it into a frayed network of fleeting thoughts and impulses, a delicate narrative that ends like a magic trick in a puff of smoke."

With: Sarah Adler, Jim Fletcher, Niklas Svennung, Oliver Zahm. Thanks: Bernadette, Sung, John, Alleged Films, American Montage Inc.

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