The Stars Are Beautiful (1974) 19 min 16mm, by Stan Brakhage (1933-2003):
More on Brakhage at Senses of Cinema.
I find this kind of non-narrative experimental filmmaking wonderful. When I studied film in college my interests gravitated to this kind of art. Maybe it was because I was also studying art history and had a fondness for modern art. Maybe also because I love poetry. I think any work of art is a kind of test of what we bring to it. That test is not only of us, but of the artist and his/her work of art. A kind of dialogue ensues if we pursue it. Brakhage worked with a language, at least on its surface, that is foreign to most people. One could say it is abstract, I prefer poetic. However, I think there is a universal resonance within his best films that makes them work at a deeper level than is possible with more common forms of film language. I also had the privilege of attending a two evening presentation and discussion with Brakhage where he talked of his processes, inspirations, showed a number of his films, and introduced us to other filmmakers. It was revelatory.