Monday, March 16, 2009

Daney: Genealogy of the Nouvelle Vague

Serge Daney on comparing the time of the Nouvelle Vague with now:

"In the present context we can see how much cinema has changed and shrunk: today it's misplaced to speak of a generation, a group, a school or even a pack. A young filmmaker now, from fear of being unnoticed, quickly becomes a fighting machine geared only to self-defence and self-celebration."

Daney wrote this in 1992. Has this changed today, especially with all the film writing happening on the Internet? Can a Nouvelle Vague-type moment happen again?

A Genealogical Approach
Originally published in French in Jean-Louis Passek (ed.), D’un cinéma l’autre (Paris: Centre Pompidou, 1998), translated by Jim Cook.

Many thanks to staff at the Film Studies Department at King's College London who have translated this text for their academic use and kindly accepted to put it online.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Daney interviews Rohmer

This review at DVD times indicates that one of the features of The Green Ray DVD (much cheaper on Amazon) is an interview between Serge Daney and Eric Rohmer subtitled in English.

From 1985 to 1990, Daney hosted a weekly broadcast called Microfilms on French radio station France-Culture. He interviewed Rohmer in September 1986. The French recording is available from the French Audio Visual Archives.

Thursday, March 05, 2009

Last Thoughts; birth of a journal (now online)

Thanks to the generosity of Vertigo Magazine, this text is now available online.

Last Thoughts; birth of a journal
Translated by Tom Milne, Vertigo Magazine, Vol. 1 No.1 Spring 1993. Originally published in French in Trafic, no. 1, Winter 1991.

After leaving Libération and "television criticism" in 1991, Serge Daney's ultimate "positive act" (in his words) was the creation of the film review Trafic, which continues to publish today. This is the translation (of extracts of?) the text Daney wrote in the first issue.

I remember reading it with all the excitement of discovering a major new film publication. The issue contains texts from Godard, Monteiro, Robert Kramer, and others. Now, I find the text a bit too symptomatic of Daney's last writings. There's a lot of melancholy. But he still manages to explore further one of the concepts he was keen on: resistance.

Anyway, enjoy! And thanks again to Vertigo.