A Fire in My Belly is an awkward work that at first glance can appear to be both hyperbolic or overreaching and inconsistent or contradictory. This short film resembles a travel log, an illustrated lecture, or an educational slide show that mixes the unpitying gaze of a mondo cane film (unwrapped mummies with gaping mouths, unusually disabled bodies performing daily tasks, animals forced into fighting by their human captors) with the deliriously overwrought expressionism of 1980s music videos (spinning eyeballs aflame, strobed flashes of milk splashes). The film also recalls major moments in the visual avant-garde of the twentieth century by invoking 1920s surrealist iconography, aping Eisenstein’s clunkier intellectual montages, and echoing the idolatry of Kenneth Anger’s films which themselves borrow from the formal idioms [of] religious and exploitation films. A Fire in My Belly overtly conflates symbolic registers and gains momentum by joining documentary footage of workers performing precarious tasks or snakes devouring their prey to staged studio shots of symbolic transactions involving leaking blood, throwing money, spinning globes, or torched marionettes. [from Karl Schoonover's essay 'David Wojnarowicz's Graven Image: Cinema, Censorship, and Queers'; hyperlinks added by FSFF]
Following its much appreciated seasonal break, a rather bleary-eyed but well-rested Film Studies For Free wishes its readers a very happy new year.
Its first few posts of 2012 will be devoted to catching up with some new issues of online film and moving image studies related journals, starting with a listing of links to a new collection of work from one of the most original of such journals: World Picture on the concept of 'wrong'.
FSFF particularly liked Schoonover on Wojnarowicz's A Fire in My Belly, (as above), Schwartz's riff on Pasolini, Malsky on dystopian sound, and Manon and Temkin on glitch art.
WORLD PICTURE 6, 2011: Table of Contents
- Mark Andrejevic: Estrangement 2.0
- Bishnupriya Ghosh: Governing by Wrong
- Seb Franklin: Is Attention Really Immaterial? Visual Culture after Post-Fordism
- Danny Hayward: The Essential Standpoint of Man: An Autopsy, In Three Parts
- Sam Lipsyte in conversation with Brian Price and Meghan Sutherland: Acategorical Imperatives
- Matt Malsky: Being Heard: Listening In–Sound and Our Dystopian Present
- Hugh S. Manon and Daniel Temkin: Notes on Glitch
- Daniel Temkin—gl1tchw0rks gall3ry
- Davide Panagia: The Notion of Pantry: A Speculative Defense of Unuse
- Brian Price: A Theory of Regret
- Lucy Raven: Tech City
- Scott C. Richmond: “Dude, That's Just Wrong”: Mimesis, Identification, Jackass
- Karl Schoonover: David Wojnarowicz's Graven Image: Cinema, Censorship, and Queers
- Louis-Georges Schwartz: A Futher Explanation of My Last Error By Pier Paolo Pasolini
- A. L. Steiner: WELCOME TO MY RECTANGLE