Fritz Lang (1974/1990)

Director: Werner Dütsch First broadcast: 3 December 1990 Werner Dütsch, born in 1939, came to the WDR film department in 1970. Over more than three decades, he produced essayistic work by Helmut Färber, Harun Farocki, Hartmut Bitomsky, and the like. He also acted as a co-producer for films by Johan van der Keuken (Amsterdam, Global […]

TELEKRITIK: Über zwei Filme von Peter Nestler

Director: Rainer Gansera First broadcast: 28 October 1975 TELEKRITIK was a series of programs with at least ten installments between 1973 and 1975. Its commissioning editor, Angelika Wittlich, had just finished university when she began her work. She recalls: I had just come to the WDR. I had done German and Romance Studies and was […]

TELEKRITIK: Über Song of Ceylon

Director: Harun Farocki First broadcast: 7 October 1975 Depending on how you count, Harun Farocki’s 30-minute analysis of Basil Wright’s The Song of Ceylon was either the third or the fourth program the director realised for the Telekritik series at WDR. In 1973, his The Trouble with Images (1973) had provoked heated debates within the […]

Towards an alternative history of the video essay: Westdeutscher Rundfunk, Cologne

by Volker Pantenburg This dossier on audiovisual essays focuses on a trajectory in the history of the video essay that tends to be ignored in current discussions of the format. According to a well-known genealogical account, the video essay was born from the encounter of platforms like YouTube, social media, cinephilia 2.0, inexpensive DIY editing […]

Problems with the gendered POV shot in ‘Lilya 4-Ever’

by Kiera Sandusky I made an earlier version of this video for my final project in Form and Meaning, a core film/video class at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago meant to give a theoretical understanding of film editing. Kevin B. Lee taught my section of the class and gave us the opportunity […]

My crush was a superstar

by Chloé Galibert-Laîné This video was produced as part of an ongoing collaborative project on terrorist media. The project aims to explore the contents and contexts for production of terrorist media and to question how these images migrate from social media to news broadcasts, from phones to computers, from the Middle East to other regions […]

Snake oil in N—–town

by Steven Boone I happened upon Roger Corman’s 1962 film The Intruder while casually surfing YouTube. Some twist of algorithmic fate led the site to suggest that movie for me. Less than five minutes into the film I understood why: William Shatner, America’s Captain, pop sci-fi royalty, utters the word ‘nigger’. YouTube knows that I […]

Outbreak of violent protests prompts a state of emergency

by​ ​THE ANTI-BANALITY UNION​, 1 March 2017 It echoed loudly in an escalating confrontation between extreme ends of the political spectrum.[1] The presence of thousands of camouflage-clad National Guard troops and armored vehicles was a sign that the city was not quite back to normal. While many protesters called for an end to the citywide […]

Critique, protest, activism, and the video essay

by Kevin B. Lee This selection of video essays is curated for an issue of the journal NECSUS with the special section theme #True. This begs the question of how this word applies to the video essay, particularly those featured in this selection meant to represent possibilities for the video essay to function as social […]

Being Bowie

by Will Brooker and Rebecca Hughes Brooker This film documents a project that began when a musical hero and cultural icon of mine died. Lou Reed passed away in October 2013, which made me realise I should celebrate one of my other heroes, David Bowie, while he was still alive. My way of paying tribute […]

The Place of Voiceover in Academic Audiovisual Film and Television Criticism

by Ian Garwood The line between academic and non-scholarly videographic film criticism The production of The Place of Voiceover in Academic Audiovisual Film and Television Criticism (2016) coincided with the release of two books focused on videographic film studies: The Videographic Essay – Criticism in Sound and Image, edited by Christian Keathley and Jason Mittell;[1] […]

House Arrest

by Domietta Torlasco I have always been interested in doing what Godard once described as ‘research in the form of a spectacle’. Even in my writing, I begin by collecting images and quotes, treating the latter as passages (walkways), visible points of entry into a world (of ideas) that for me always maintains a sensorial, […]

The audiovisual essay as performative research

by Catherine Grant By tentatively circumscribing one spectrum or continuum of the field for the purposes of this section – with digital, found footage collage at one end and the film/media essay at the other – we hope to orient the thoughts and works of our contributors and readers toward those audiovisual possibilities that actively […]

Warped Reflections: The Cinematic Identity of Helmut Berger

by Hugo Emmerzael Last year the International Film Festival Rotterdam hosted the second edition of the renewed Critics’ Choice program, in which film critics were invited to introduce a film of the program with a video essay. Films reflecting on film, in front of a live audience that could ask questions to the video essayist […]

Live Streaming US

by Paula Albuquerque A Crackup at the Race Riots (2015) is a film made by the Belgian artist trio Leo Gabin and inspired by Harmony Korine’s homonymous novel. With most material coming from Florida, the film consists of a collage of imagery found on YouTube. This mostly consists of home videos or fragments from vlogs […]