While pondering the poetics of new media space, I stumbled across Christophe Réprimel’s remarkable short film Schizo/graphie (2007, France, 8:15). It is a 21st century kind of “silent” film, developing parallel narratives launched from the same experience. Through the use of such devices as variable split screens, grainy video, deliberate diegetic “silence,” and, importantly, a nondiegetic music track, Mr. Réprimel’s film significantly perturbs our sense of time. The multichannel presentation keeps the viewer constantly reassessing the status of “now.” When, for a time late in the film, part of the screen goes dark, the viewer may find himself or herself communicating to the film about that which is not seen.
At this level of perceptual engagement, it seems to me there is little difference between a good film and a good poem. If so, what poetic devices correspond to montage–traditional and vertical–and the stabilizing/destabilizing potential for nondiegetic sound? Eisenstein’s characterization of montage as collision brings some poems to mind, which I’ll need to re-explore soon.
Mr. Réprimel cites the help of friends, a paucity of means, and the influences of films by David Lynch, Mike Figgis, and Virgil Waldrich. His Schizo/graphie is receiving some rave reviews and he is currently working on another story which may be ready later this year. Bonne chance–we’ll be watching.