This program features three works surveying America’s (inner) landscape: Quick Billy, Baillie’s most personal piece; along with Pastorale D’Ete by Will Hindle, one of Baillie’s beloved filmmaker friends, and the astonishing Starlight by Robert Fulton.
Robert Fulton, USA, 1970, 16mm, 5m
A Tibetan Lama. His disciple. The disciple’s wife, young boy, and terrier. An old tugboat crossing the Mississippi River. A man in his seventh month of solitude, and the hermitage built by his own hands. The man’s bloodhound; his cat. Clouds crossing the Continental Divide. A mountain stream. A girl. The sun.
Will Hindle, USA, 1958, 16mm, 9m
Joining the lyrical images of a singular high summer’s day, Hindle’s debut film is also one of the nation’s first works from the Personal Film movement.
Bruce Baillie, USA, 1971, 16mm, 72m
Baillie’s tour de force. “The essential experience of transformation, between Life and Death, death and birth, or rebirth, in four reels. The first three are adapted from The Tibetan Book of the Dead; the fourth reel in the form of a black-and-white one-reeler Western (conceived by Paul Tulley, Charlotte Todd, and myself, with Debby Porter, Bob Treadwell, and Jiro Tulley; music by John Adams; titles by Bob Ross), summarizing the material of the first reels, which are color and abstract… The work incorporates a large body of material: dream, the daily recording roll-by-roll of that extraordinary period of the filmmaker’s life — ‘the moment-by-moment confrontation with Reality’ (Carl Jung). Each phase of the work was given its own time to develop, stretching over a period of three-and-a-half years… All of the film was recorded next to the Pacific Ocean in Fort Bragg, California… the Sea is the main force though the film. ‘Prentice to the Sea!’ was something I wrote to myself in those days… The film was conceived for viewing with a single projector, allowing the natural pauses between reels.” – B.B.