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Author Topic: True outsider film - strange and inexplicable footage  (Read 2563 times)
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« on: May 01, 2013, 01:38:30 AM »

This doesn't seem to fit into any of the other film and visual arts threads. I found my old VHS of "Michael Jackson's “copy” from Heaven" made by the Popovski Family/ATIS Family during the early 2000s and it still seems to be one of the oddest documentaries I have ever seen.

For a few years I was collecting footage which had a certain creepy mood and minority appeal which make most viewers feel uncomfortable. An American Christian cable TV show 'Streets of Pain' which focused lingeringly on homeless people shooting up and crying for the camera. Silent training films for community care workers with long shots of the severely mentally disabled pouring food over themselves. Any anti-abortion propaganda. I got this footage around this time from one of these contacts.

It's a young woman filmed during the year 2000 repeatedly moonwalking like Michael Jackson then having sobbing fits, with a very incoherent voiceover in bad English explaining how Michael Jackson's spirit had touched her family in the spirit world and that this is actual possession. The best article I can find online about the simultaneously sinister and ridiculous group is at  http://www.okok.org.uk/Y_Mag/YMag1_Screen.pdf - the article by Frater 33 'The ATIS Enigma'. Apparently the excerpts I have are merely a twenty minute fragment of the full DVD M Jackson, Irma, Me and One Truth"

As you will read, their story involves scientology, classical music, becoming refugees from the Soviet Bloc and a distinct possibility of mind control experiments. It is very strange and subtly unnerving footage, and its obscurity adds to the weirdness.

More recommendations of inexplicable film please!

And here is the best part of the legendary 'Heartbeat In The Brain' 1970 documentary which I think I read about in Amok Journal during the 1990s and spent years trying to find - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D9q0KD7eBjU
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« Reply #1 on: May 01, 2013, 04:29:49 PM »

I once was asked what kind of films I would like to make. I made some dramatic stupid response that I wanted to make films that felt like an open wound. Well I a couple of weeks ago I saw a film that is pretty much that.
During the Chicago Underground Film Festival I got a drunken call in the middle of the night telling me that I really needed to see "A Body without Organs".  Oh boy what a ride it was. I've never seen anything like it. It's as outsider you get. I'm not sure if its released yet but here is the blurb from CUFF.

Stephen Graves, 81 min., Video, 2012, USA
A Body without Organs speaks in a continual present tense, unfolding as a day in the lives of my parents. This tense is a supple present, allowing space for all of the dreams and all of the pasts, real and imagined, which together inform our experience of any present moment.  How does one conceive of the present in a body steeped in dreams, when the dream worlds refuse to lift, refuse to dissipate upon waking, but instead cling on as a veneer? And what is the present to a body undergoing an eternal, internally imposed incarceration, whose friends are all ghosts in dreams, whom nobody visits, who sleeps all day and paints all night?

Thirteen years had passed since the operation in which my father’s colon was removed. Thirteen years since he had shuttered his practice as a physician, and the start of the pain caused by conditions resulting from and exacerbated by the surgery. I was eight years old at the time of that operation, and twenty-one when we started to film together.

My mother also stopped working, instead devoting herself full-time to taking care of her crippled partner and growing son. As years passed, once-vibrant relationships outside of the marriage faded away. Faced as we were by a tragedy we could neither properly perceive nor articulate, there was a general turning inward. This film seeks to reverse that process. (SG)
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