In the Show – 8th April 2008

This week, film reviewer Gary Pollard talks to two cinematic giants.


Hungarian film director Bela Tarr is the master of the long take, and – to a degree – the long movie. He’s considered by many to be one of the greatest living directors. “Satantango” is seven hours long. The opening shot, of a herd of cows moving through a village is eight minutes long. His early works were social-realist in form. With “Damnation”, “Satantango” and “The Werckmeister Harmonies”, his work began to take on a more metaphysical tone. He says he doesn’t believe in God, but he makes a strong case that humans must be treated with dignity.

Peter Greenaway is a British movie director, who receives much of his funding and support from Holland. One strand of his movies, from “A Walk Through H” to “A Draughtsman’s Contract” and his new film “Nightwatching” is about examining man-made objects in the hope they will give up their secrets. In the case of “Nightwatching” it’s Rembrandt’s famous painting “The Nightwatch”. A few years ago, Greenaway made the transition into being a VJ, using a mixed audiovisual form that he says will supersede cinema. He believes cinema is dead.

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