We again walk into the world that is Instllation art / video. This is also, at the basest level, a piece of criticism on a piece of criticism on a piece of criticism. That alone makes this the single most meta thing I've ever written, and as it is now hip to point to your meta-ism and scream "META" while pointing like Donald Sutherland at the end of Invasion of the Bodysnatchers I have now fulfilled my duty.
In a sense, Lee's film, created for Frames Cinema Journal, is an exploration of another piece, Harun Farocki’s 1995 short Schnittstelle or Interface. The piece uses the tools of desktop editing to show how the point of a piece is created via the cut. That's actually an over-simplification, but what are you gonna do?
Farocki's piece, which itself was a dual-screen art installation which was then made into a single piece. It showed how a filmmaker worked with video and film, not only as tools, but as constraints. Interface 2.0 is not only a comment on that, but on the aspect of commenting upon film itself through the medium of film. This is an old idea, of course. There is some talk in it that I just don't buy. "Images rarely comment on images." is what a significant portion of the film boils down to, and that's utterly false. EVERY image comments on the content of every other image, and thus it is a conversation. It is not that every image is the same, or that they are all different, but an image is a bound system, and thus constructed of the same thing, which means that every image must be related to every other image, and the methods in which a filmmaker or photographer uses that image is a comment on every other image as far as expressing a totally. At the bottom level, the image upon which the meaning of every other image is overlayed, is the idea of The Image, and thus a commentary on image.
Yeah, it's one of those reviews...
This is a fascinating piece, and one that deserves a good delving. You can read the piece several ways, but it is best looked at through the eyes of someone approaching the idea of film as commentary on filmmaking. Through that lens, it is the darkest sort of film - it makes the brushstrokes show.
Klaus at Gunpoint
A Film Journal dedicated to all film.A segment of Office Supply Publishing.