Anaglyph Tom (Tom with the Puffy Cheeks) (2009)
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Avant-garde auteur Ken Jacobs received critical adulation for his 1969 work Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son -- an extreme experimental film in which he visually dissected a Biograph one-reeler from 1905. Anaglyph Tom (Tom with Puffy Cheeks) revisits the same material for additional deconstruction. Divided into two halves, it begins with a sequence where a group of circus performers, villagers, and harlequins assemble in a small-town square for merriment; though the original sequence lasted about two minutes, here it takes up 50 minutes of time. Jacobs extends it ad infinitum, manipulating the images with digital 3-D imaging, zoom-ins, flicker effects, removal of various portions of the image, and a number of other visual and spatial devices. The second half of the film deconstructs a sequence in which characters chase a pig thief; by using flicker effects to dramatically slow down the action, Jacobs forces viewers to study the framing and the staging and enter a purely analytical mindset. In the concluding minutes, Jacobs abandons narrative altogether, reducing the onscreen images to a series of kaleidoscopic abstractions and unintelligible gray blocks. ~ Nathan Southern, Rovi … More
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Critic Reviews for Anaglyph Tom (Tom with the Puffy Cheeks)
An entrancing and fascinating experience filled with equally imaginative, wondrous and bizarre sights and sounds. Much like the even more experimental film, The Flicker, it definitely deserves to be studied and thoroughly discussed in film school.
as with all the greats, Jacobs is still discovering, and even the old stuff seems new again.
Jacobs's mastery of 3-D is intermittent, but when it works, the new textures bestowed upon Edison's long-dead cast are moving.
It seems only fitting that in the same year Jeffrey Katzenberg proclaimed 3-D to be the savior of big-screen moviegoing, that tireless celluloid elastician Ken Jacobs has routed the technology back to the very origins of cinema itself.
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