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19 MAY 2013

Experiments in the Revival of Organisms

"This disturbing film records the successful experiments in the resuscitation of life to dead animals (dogs), as conducted by Dr. S.S. Bryukhonenko at the Institute of Experimental Physiology and Therapy, Voronezh, U.S.S.R. Director: D.I. Yashin. Camera: E.V. Kashina. Narrator: Professor Walter B. Cannon. Introduced by Professor J.B.S. Haldane."

(Moving Image Archive)

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1940anatomyanimal anatomyanimal cruelty • animal dissections • artificial circulation • autojektor • beingbio-ethicsbiomedical • biomedical science • breathe life into • canine • creature • dead animals • dissectiondoghistory of medicine • Institute of Experimental Physiology and Therapy • Internet Archive • John Burdon Sanderson Haldane • lifemedical ethicsmedical experimentmedical research • Moving Image Archive • organ • resuscitation • revival of organisms • scientific agescientific discoveries • Sergei Sergeyevich Brukhonenko • severed head • shocking • Soviet Film Agency • speculative science • Techfilm Studio • Walter Bradford Cannon • zoology

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
19 DECEMBER 2012

North Korean 'Propaganda' is the real viral hit of 2012

"Propaganda 2012 is a 95–minute video that presents itself as a North Korean educational video intending to inform the citizens of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea about the dangers of Western propaganda. The video's uploader, known as 'Sabine', reiterates a statement she gave to the Federal Police regarding the movie's origins. She explains how the film was given to her by people claiming to be North Korean defectors whilst she was visiting Seoul. ...

Although the origins of Propaganda 2012 are contentious, its power lies in the fact that much of its content attempts to avoid invented history. Considering the media buzzwords associated with the alleged country of origin, Propaganda 2012 turns a mirror onto the Western world and seeks to criticise its entire history and culture–from the genocide and imperialism of its past, to the interventionism and consumerism of the modern era. The movie's overall attitude seems to express an intention to educate, shock and caution its audience into realising that people in the West are governed by a super–rich ruling class (The one per cent), who do not offer them true democracy; but instead seek to invade and assimilate as many countries as possible, whilst distracting their population with a smokescreen of consumerism, celebrity, and reality television. This message is spread across the video's 17 chapters, which each attempt to focus on specific examples of Western indoctrination and oppression. The film is regularly punctuated by commentary from an anonymous North Korean professor, and quotes from Western thinkers such as Noam Chomsky and Richard Dawkins. ...

Propaganda 2012 is certainly a film where the audience takes from it what they bring to it, and a variety of emotions can be induced upon viewing. Laughter, cynicism, outrage, contemplation and reflection would all be adequate responses to the video's tough, and often graphic, portrayal of the complex world in which we are living. Yet perhaps the most important thing to remember when watching the film is that the video is available to view uncensored, on a largely unregulated world wide web, and merely represents an extreme end of the vast spectrum of free expression. Therefore, during this festive end to an austere year, enjoy Propaganda 2012 as an interesting and beguiling alternative voice that cries loudly against the dangers of religious consumerism, and reminds us to remain humble and reflect on those less fortunate than ourselves."

(Kieran Turner–Dave, 17 December 2012, Independent Arts Blogs)

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20129/11anti-capitalism • brainwashing • capitalismCentury of the Selfcommunismconspiracy theoriesconsumer cultureconsumer desireconsumerism • counter-terrorism • criticismcult of celebritycultural imperialismcultural implicationsdemocracydistractiondocumentary • DPRK • emotive manipulation • false flag • fear • fear of communism • fear of terrorism • free expression • Gangnam Style • genocidehalf-baked ideashistory and culture • hysterics • imperialism • indoctrination • interventionism • invented history • Just Do It • Korea • life in the West • likes • manufacturing consent • moralitynarcissismnationalism • neo-imperialist • Noam ChomskyNorth KoreaoppressionOprah WinfreyParis Hiltonpatriotismpolitical educationpropagandaPropaganda (2012)public relationsQuentin Tarantinoreality televisionreligion • religious consumerism • Richard Dawkins • Sabine (pseudonym) • salvation • September 11 2001shockingsmokescreensocialist realismSociety of the Spectacle (Guy Debord)South Koreaspectacle • Survivor (tv series) • terrorism • the one per cent • trust • Tyra Banks • unconscious desireswatching television

CONTRIBUTOR

David Reid
04 MAY 2012

Lucy McRae: body architect and synthetic biologist

"Lucy creates provocative and often grotesquely beautiful imagery that suggests a new breed existing in an alternate world.

Trained as a classical ballerina and architect her work inherently fascinates with the human body. The media call her inventor, friends call her a trailblazer. Either way, she relies on instinct to evolve an extraordinary visual path that is powerful, primal and uniquely Lucy McRae."

(Lucy McRae)

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absurd • alternate world • anatomyarchitecture • Bart Hess • beauty expressionbody • body architect • body morph • Champagne Valentine • classical ballerina • corporealcostume designfashionfashion body • future human • future human shapes • genetic manipulationgrotesquegrotesquely beautiful imageryhuman bodyhuman enhancement • human silhouette • ideal formintimate interfaces • invent and build • inventorlow-tech • Lucy McRae • LucyandBart • material world • new breed • performancephysical archetypeposthuman • primal • prostheticsprovocative • psychic-sexual • re-shape • scenario • shockingskinspeculative design • surrealist • synthetic biologist • transposing materialsvisceralvisual spectaclevisualisation

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
05 FEBRUARY 2012

Pink Flamingos: a provocative celebration of otherness

"'Pink Flamingos was an antihippie movie made for hippies who would be punks in two years. It's a pothead movie. I wrote it on pot.' – John Waters"

(Jeff Jackson, DreamlandNews)

Fig.1 John Waters (1972). trailer for "Pink Flamingos".

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1970s1972androgynyart filmBaltimore Marylandblack humour • camping it up • celluloid moment • comedy • Cookie Mueller • cult filmcult movie • Danny Mills • David Lochary • defecate • deviancedisgust • disgusting • Divine (actor) • dog • Edith Massey • egg • excrement • faeces • female impersonator • film • flamboyance • flamingo • gaygrotesque • hippie • hippie exploitation • independent cinemaindie cinemainfamous • John Waters • lip synclowbrow • Mary Vivian Pearce • midnight movie • Mink Stole (actor) • mobile home • notorietyotherness • over-acting • over-the-toppink • Pink Flamingos (film) • poodleprovocativepseudonympunkpunk rock ethosqueer cinemashockshocking • Steve Yeager • subculture • swallow • tabootransgressiontrashunderground • underground star • USAviolence

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
02 OCTOBER 2011

Un Chien Andalou: a masterpiece of surrealist cinema

"Acclaimed as a surrealist masterpiece, Un Chien andalou aggressively disconnects itself from narrative flow. The creators of this short film. Luis Buñuel and Salvador Dalí, fully intended there to be no links between successive scenes. Fortunately this didn't inhibit their dreaming up of some of the most striking moments ever to be projected upon the silver screen. The opening focuses on a man (Luis Buñuel) stropping his cut–throat razor, honing it to a perfect edge. Stepping onto the balcony, he gazes at the moon. This celestial orb is instantly replaced with a woman and, enlarging rapidly, her left eye. The bare blade then descends on her unprotected pupil, a graphic incident.

Designed to shock, which it still does almost 70 years later, quick editing removes the image before it has time to fully sink in. Suddenly the viewer is faced with a nun–like figure weaving uncertainly down the road on a bicycle. There is no bridge to the previous horror, although this mysterious person does provide a number of objects which resurface at odd intervals. Later there is the unusual sight of a man (Robert Hommet) hauling two grand pianos, each stuffed with the putrefying remains of a donkey, as he trudges towards a cowering woman (Simone Mareuil). He is also unfortunate enough to have a hole in his hand, where the ants live. None of this is significant.

A marvellous aspect of something as wilfully bizarre as Un Chien andalou is that almost any interpretation can be drawn from the images shown. Perhaps every single scene is random and unconcerned with any other, although Buñuel certainly seems to have included items which are present throughout the film. In some ways the repeated glimpses of these things in situations where they shouldn't be adds to the confused feel, enhanced by the off–putting and nonsensical time–markers deployed.

The eternal themes of life, death, lust and love are thrown up at various points, although there is no framework on which to attach these emotions. This is of no consequence though as Buñuel has already hurried onto the next sequence, violently cutting so that the desired woman becomes naked in a flash – a picture of what are ardent suitor really sees. Un Chien andalou does not require such deep analysis though, being much more a film which should be purely experienced. It achieves that which Buñuel and Dalí aimed for and, with a live music accompaniment, is unstoppable."

(Damian Cannon, 1997)

Fig.1 Luis Buñuel and Salvador Dalí (1929). 'Un Chien andalou'

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TAGS

1929aggressionAn Andalusian Dog (1929)art film • cut-throat razor • deathdogdreamfilmFreudiangraphic representationinfluential works • interrupted narrative flow • lifeloveLuis BunuellustmasterpiecenakednunRobert HommetSalvador Dalishockingsilent filmSimone Mareuil • slice • slicedSpanish filmspectaclesurrealismsurrealist cinemasurrealist filmssymbolismUn Chien Andalou (1929)violencevisual metaphor

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
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