Former People Film Podcast: Jeanne Dielman, 23, Quai du Commerce, 1080 Bruxelles

Co-produced by Diet Soap, the Former People film podcast is a discussion series. In this episode, we debate Chantal Akerman’s 1975 masterpiece Jeanne Dielman, 23 quai du Commerce, 1080 Bruxelles. Is it a Feminist propaganda film, an exploration of obsessive compulsive disorder, or a hidden camera documentary about your mother? Actually it’s a three hour difficulty, a revered housework movie, and an antidote to all the “prostitute with a heart of gold” Hollywood spectaculars you’ve ever seen. Jeanne Dielman will make you suffer.

It is physical, but you know, when I started to shoot Jeanne Dielman, at the beginning, I was not aware of what was going to be the film. Everything was written in the script already, but still. After three or four days, when I saw the first dailies, I realized and I said, “My God, the film is going to be three hours and 20 or 40 minutes long, and it’s going to be developing little by little.” -Chantal Akerman

What is the Avant Garde? (A 1000 words Rerun)

In anticipation of the next Former People journal I am rereleasing this old episode of 1000 Words:Talking Art. This is the second episode entitled simply: What is the Avant Garde?

This is a podcast I did with my son Benjamin who was 13 at the time. He’s 17 now and I’m sure he’d be pleased as punch to know that people were listening to his adolescent self again.

In any case, listen to this to discover just what the avant garde really is.

13 Feb 2014, 8:59am
Former People
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Former People Film Podcast #2: Slacker and Dazed and Confused

This is the second episode of the Former People Film Podcast, a production of the literary journal Former People and the Diet Soap podcast. The conversation was edited on Saturday, February 8th, 2014.

This month you’ll be listening to a conversation about the Richard Linklater movies “Slacker” and “Dazed and Confused.” It’s a conversation between Douglas Lain, C Derrick Varn, and Steven Michalkow.

In 1991 Linklater captured a moment in the history of American bohemia with his first film “Slacker” and then, 1993, he captured a moment in the history of American high school with “Dazed and Confused.”

When asked to explain his first feature, the experimental film “Slacker,” Linklater reportedly said:

It’s the way my brain works, I guess. This is how I feel about the world. I’m looking for a new way to tell a story…

You’ll hear three different perspective. For one thing, when it comes to “Slacker” I was the one who liked the movie. Varn and Michalkow had a different reaction.

Former People Movie Podcast #1: Solaris

A Co-production from Diet Soap and Former People: A Journal of Bangs and Whimpers this film podcast will focus on both contemporary and canonical films in an attempt to explore the development of film aesthetics. Our first episode focuses on Tarkovsky’s Solaris and the intersection of science fiction and religion.

To put the conversation into context at the outset here is a quote from Andrei Tarkovsky:

The artist is always the servant, and is perpetually trying to pay for the gift that has been given to him as if by a miracle. Modern man, however, does not want to make any sacrifice, even though true affirmation of the self can only be expressed in sacrifice. We are gradually forgetting about this, and at the same time, inevitably, losing all sense of human calling.