Sundays are made for cinema.
Whether it’s a sparsely populated matinee screening in your local picturehouse or a enjoying long lost classic on the TV as you lie defeated after a meal with the family; the lull in the working week allows for the simple pleasure of film to work its magic.
One of the parts of working on HeyUGuys that gives the most pleasure is the connections we build with our readers and the film recommendations we receive and pass on ourselves is great fun. The weekly Ripped from the Crypt section of our Mouth Off podcast is becoming a favourite arena for championing our favoured oddities.
In this spirit I’m happy to point you in the direction of Jacob Bricca’s short film Pure, which in the words of the director is,
A meditation on genre, a commentary on visual cliches, and a celebration of the visceral pleasures of cinema. Music by The Jesus Lizard.
What follows is a succession of shots from various actions films (there is the full list included in the credits, and there are a lot), which build to create a stunning exploration of various action movie cliches. I had heard of Bricca from his Editing work for Lost in La Mancha, the set documentary from Terry Gilliam’s doomed Don Quixote project, and this short has played well at festivals recently and is now available online.
Jacob Bricca gives this commentary to his film,
The idea for Pure grew out of my fascination with the Jesus Lizard song that anchors the film. “7 vs. 8” has sections of incredible intensity followed by interludes of almost unbearable slowness in which time seems to stop. As I listened to the song over and over again, I decided that I would try to find images that would do justice to the violent, aggressive textures in the music, as well as to its contrasts. Action films seemed like a good place to start.
From here I attempted to identify visual patterns in the films that could incrementally increase in intensity as the film progressed. Vengeful looks could segue into foot chases, and from there into fight scenes, car chases and explosions. The more films I looked at, the more patterns I found. One of my favorite sections in the film is the part in which white spray fills the screen in shot after shot; whether from water, smoke, or broken glass, it was fascinating to find this motif repeated in film after film.
The title of the film comes from the title of the first album released by The Jesus Lizard. I liked the sound of the word, and it seemed to go well with a film that was the result of a process of distillation and extraction.
Pure is an exercise in the creation of visual rhythms. There is a delicate balance between the picture and sound elements in any film, and this one attempts to bring those interactions to the fore. Pure is also a commentary on the ubiquity and predictability of certain images in contemporary cinema. As the film progresses, the absurdity factor rises. (You’ve got speedboats? Well, we’ve got flying motorcycles and exploding helicopters!)
Here’s the video, please follow the director’s advice and play this one loud and full screen.