Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Lover Other

Lover Other is a documentary about two unconventional lesbians who challenged the Nazi invaders on the British Channel Island of Jersey in World War II. I'm sure there was a compelling story in there somewhere — the description in the Frameline program certainly sounded worthwhile — but I didn't see it on the screen. Instead I saw a series of disjointed and dry interview clips interspersed with self-consciously arty recreations of photos and readings of poems, managing to be both boring and annoying.

Far more annoying, though, were the two shorts that screened before the feature. First was Dyketactics, a visual tone poem from 1974 marred by god-awful music and a visual aesthetic that has not aged well at all. Worse yet was a tribute to Dyketactics called Untitled (Dyketactics Revisited), which I wouldn't wish upon my worst enemy. The original at least was mercifully brief, but the tribute was eight full minutes of relentless noise, both aurally and visually. Apparently it wasn't actually a cat being tortured, but it sure sounded like it.

If you ever have the opportunity to see these films, take that opportunity to pick lint out of your navel, or to watch paint dry, or to bang your head against a brick wall.

Lover Other, dir. Barbara Hammer, 2006 USA, 55 min.

Dyketactics, dir. Barbara Hammer, 1974 USA, 4 min.

Untitled (Dyketactics Revisited), dir. Liz Rosenfeld, 2005 USA, 8 min.

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