Can Dialectics Break Bricks Cinema: five obstrructions

Sunday 10 March 2024, Can Dialectics Break Bricks Cinema: five obstrructions * 87 minutes * In Danish with English subtitles * free screening * doors open at 8pm * intro & film start at 8.30

If the pandemic revealed anything to me, it is our difficulty to be creative anymore. This entire thing could have given us the possibility to get back to our senses, and it could have been a catalyst to find creative solutions to the problem. Instead what resulted for the most part was a lack of reflection, a total shut-down of the imagination and paralysis. In a way, one of the most intriguing movies ever made by the Danish director von Trier is this constructed documentary… and it shows us how limitations can be used in a positive sense rather than a negative, self-defeating one.

So what is this movie about? One of the artists Lars von Trier looked up to most was a fellow Dane named Jørgen Leth, who was famous for a short movie he made in 1968 called “The Perfect Human”. Von Trier says he watched that film more than twenty times, and found it fascinating. So he decided to approach his mentor, and challenge him to remake his legendary movie five more times, but this time around with a new set of five difficult obstructions that von Trier would give him. In this flick we see Jørgen Leth accept the challenge, how he struggles with it, and when restricted into a corner, how he pushes back with creativity. In this battle von Trier shows how rules and boundaries can be used to spur one’s spirit, rather than deflate it.

We are becoming more and more complacent and dependent on products and gadgets to do things for us. In the process we are losing many of our natural skills. For me, it’s clear we are locked in a mechanism of consumerism and technology that is robbing us of our imagination and spirit. We are addicted to convenience, and given the choice we will always push the easy button. We recently went through a pandemic that confronted and limited us in many ways, but maybe it wasn’t devastating enough. It seems it wasn’t severe enough to unlock us, to free us—it didn’t force us to be creative again. This film is an incredible experiment, a documentary about filmmaking and the nature of creativity itself.

Film night at Joe’s Garage, cozy cinema! Free entrance. You want to screen a movie, let us know: joe [at] lists [dot] squat [dot] net