Abortion short film

The rotting remains of 2012's festival
anoy yin barsted
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Re: Abortion short film

Post by anoy yin barsted » Thu Aug 30, 2012 11:04 pm

Stephen with ph wrote:
anoy yin barsted wrote:
The first time I read this, I read 'cork' as 'cock'!

Anyway, amusing mis-readings aside, I don’t really get your point Steven. Are you really comparing your unfortunate case of the runs to the misery and horror of a self-administered abortion?

I would like to imagine that no subject is beyond the province of a good film maker. Who is to say that your sad episode in the bog would not make for a good entry in the short film showcase? ‘Hell’, who is to say that, with the right director, a good script, and a solid performance from the lead, it wouldn’t make for a great opening or closing film? If there are any producers or suchlike perusing this forum, perhaps they will option your tale of toilet woe. However, I must admit that this is sadly unlikely. We will, however, always have a very funny post from you to enjoy. My favourite bit was when you compared your bum to the Japanese flag!

I hope your tummy is better soon though mate. I’ve had really bad diarrhoea a couple of times and I know that it is no joke. However, all hilarity about having a bad stomach aside, I’m still not sure of the thrust of your argument. Is it that certain subjects should not be potential for horror cinema? Or that you didn’t think that Tokophobia was any good?

Thing is, after having the bums a few times, like most people, I’m not sure if it is the stuff of horror cinema, as really it’s just an inconvenience at worst, and the stuff of amusing forum posts at best; so, of course you wouldn’t consider making a film about it, any more than you would spilling your cup of coffee or burning your toast. But a film about a woman resorting to such actions against her own body and progeny I found deeply uncomfortable, and also emotive.

Life or death: essence of horror. What do you say?
I’m not comparing my pebble-dashing nightmare to the experience of having an abortion.

My point is simply that a movie (or indeed any work of art) should be founded upon more than the intention of causing shock or offense. Whether that offensive spectacle be scatological or gynaecological is irrelevant – it’s a question of principle, not degree. I would apply this argument equally to torture porn, the latest work of Tom Six and the film Tokophobia.

For the record, let me state that I have nothing but unalloyed respect for anyone who, instead of sniping at filmmakers during the Q&A sessions or at the bar afterwards, actually finds the resolve to make their own movie and hold it up for public inspection. However, I do have a huge problem with the result of their labours in this case – specifically, its subject.

Yes, I was certainly upset by what I saw, and if that was the intention of the directors, then they should be congratulated. But that’s not much of an artistic ambition, is it?

I’d also take issue with your observation that this was “a film about a woman resorting to such actions against her own body and progeny” – it was, in fact, just a cinematic representation of some yucky stuff, entirely without context. At least “Embarrassing Bodies” makes a passing attempt at narrative.

“Life or death: essence of horror.” Undeniably true – but only when the otherwise gratuitous scenes of death, disembowelling and face-eating serve a higher narrative purpose, supported by subtext, social comment, metaphor or the odd gag. “The Woman” made for challenging viewing last year, but, in my opinion, amounted to so much more than just looking at nasty events on screen and feeling queasy.

However, on the plus side –I can confirm that I have now got my shit together.
Obviously, you can’t like everything matey, so fair enough.

However, what I take issue with is the idea that films shown at Fright Fest (Fright Fest!) should be bound to certain subject matters or restrained by an individual’s particular tastes or ‘principles’: I think that is a dangerous route to take with any sort of ‘art’, and never thought that I would be having such a conversation with someone who attended a horror film festival.

You’re an intelligent fella, because you discuss aspects of the films such as narrative and artistic ambition, but I dunno what the problem is. I think the artistic ambition of any film, unless clearly stated, is open to interpretation, and actually quite irrelevant: it’s the effect the film has on the audience that is important, not what the original intent was (which, let’s face it, is more often than not to make bunse for investors). However, by the very virtue of the genre, most horror films have some sort of ambition to make an audience feel uncomfortable: it is the least that they do, so I think it’s a bit rich to call the filmmakers out for doing just that.

And, if that was all Tokophobia did, then in honesty, it would be enough for me. However, while I agree that the film did not have the contextual framing or narrative line which you believe it should have, I also think that there was no need for them: woman, repulsed by idea of pregnancy reacts in a way that is violent and unpleasant: that’s all that is necessary for this film. It’s an espresso narrative; boiled down, powerful. Like I say, it is literally a film about a woman resorting to violent actions against her own body and progeny: there are no issues about it!

Now, where we differ, is that I think that there was more to it than just the representation of the act, you don’t. Fair play. However, simply because Tokophobia wasn’t to your principle, we can’t argue against the inclusion of the film. Perhaps it could be seen as gratuitous (I don’t think it was), but aren’t all films gratuitous, in that none of them have to be made? Film is film- looking for ‘subtext, social comment, metaphor’ is a highly subjective, and probably more revealing of the reader than the text; and why should any film have the responsibility to provide connotative relevance , I say. They’re either good or bad. (And if a bad film had a neat line in social commentary, would it make it a good one?)

As it was, I did find Tokophobia thought provoking, in that it encouraged me to consider the possibility of someone doing what that woman did, and why they may do it. So, for me, personally, it had it all- well made, uncomfortable (not a requisite for all films, but we were at Fright Fest!), and rather intriguing.

PS, in the bogs after, I overheard a conversation between two mateys, which went something like; ‘You see that film about the bird who give herself an abortion?....yeah that’s the one…what you think…yeah….right, well, I was thinking at the end the baby was going to turn out to be a monster or something’.

Was it you and Markos?!
Fred Krueger! He's inside me, and he wants to take me again!

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Stephen with ph
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Re: Abortion short film

Post by Stephen with ph » Thu Aug 30, 2012 11:39 pm

anoy yin barsted wrote:
PS, in the bogs after, I overheard a conversation between two mateys, which went something like; ‘You see that film about the bird who give herself an abortion?....yeah that’s the one…what you think…yeah….right, well, I was thinking at the end the baby was going to turn out to be a monster or something’.

Was it you and Markos?!
No - as we've already established (perhaps in too much detail), you'd know if you ever heard me in the bogs :shock:

thatcambridgebird
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Re: Abortion short film

Post by thatcambridgebird » Sat Sep 15, 2012 2:07 am

Tokophobia was a massive highlight of the festival for me. I loved it and Un Jour Sang most of the shorts. I'd have to say that the latter slightly pipped it for me, because of the hugely disturbing juxtaposition of mundane images (for 95% of the time anyway) coupled with the disturbing audio, but Tokophobia was a very close second.

Thank you, to both filmmakers, for such innovative and genuinely disturbing short sharp shocks. I thought both fitted in perfectly with the ethos of the festival, and I'd love to see what they have in store for the future.

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