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16 JANUARY 2010

Standard Gauge: examining the shards of the film industry frame by frame

"Standard Gauge is an autobiographical account of a few years in the film career of its maker. Such, at least, is its ostensible form and purpose. The material from which the film is composed is pieces of 35mm motion picture film, a width known in former times as standard gauge, that its maker collected while working in and around the commercial motion picture industry. The pieces are a miscellaneous assortment, and include narrative features, trailers, newsreels, commercials, and pieces of head and tail leader. ...

By examining the shards of the industry frame by frame, it discovers some of the means and themes of experimental film living, so to speak, in Hollywood. And at the same time, the film engulfs and usurps the material of the commercial motion picture industry, turning it into its subject. Thus Standard Gauge proposes a kind of mutuality or interdependence between two kinds of filmmaking that by conventional standards are thought to be divided by an unbridgeable chasm. By means of a mutual interrogation between 35mm, the gauge of the industry, and 16mm, the gauge of the independent and amateur, Standard Gauge proposes to unify film of every kind."

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TAGS

16mm198435mmartefact • China girl • commentaryephemeraexperimental filmfilmfilmmaking • forensic • found footagefound imagesframe by framegleanerHollywoodindependent cinemamaterial culturememorabilia • Morgan Fisher • scavenged • Standard Gauge • stop frametechnologyvernacular photography

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
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