Movie Diary 6/8/2021

Killer of Sheep (Charles Burnett, 1978). A re-visit to an American classic. Watching it this time I was especially struck by how Burnett lets you discover what’s going on in a scene, who’s in the room and where, what the tension is, and etc. (oh, I get it now, that kid is ducking behind a piece of plywood because he’s in an empty lot playing war games). The movie has a great soundtrack of music, but is also an ingenious arrangement of sound itself – especially the dehumanizing white-noise (what a phrase, in this context!) roar of the slaughterhouse.

Mindwalk (Bernt Capra, 1990). Remember this one? Liv Ullmann, Sam Waterston, and John Heard, walking around Mont Saint-Michel and talking about physics and meaning. It couches its scientific and philosophical ideas in a wrapper that I find equally appealing, which is the idea of meeting a stranger and having a profound encounter on the spot – plus, the backdrop is awfully photogenic.