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Michael Nyman s MAN WITH A MOVIE CAMERA
A film by Dziga Vertov
Man With a Movie Camera is an extraordinary piece of filmmaking, a montage of urban Russian life showing the people of the city at work and at play, and the machines that keep the city going. It was Vertov's first full-length film, and he used all the cinematic techniques at his disposal - dissolves, split screen, slow motion and freeze-frames - to produce a work that is exhilarating and intellectually brilliant.
This special edition DVD features a unique soundtrack specially composed by Michael Nyman and performed by the Michael Nyman band.
Michael Nyman's music has reached its largest audience by way of his film scores. Nyman has been researching the period of extraordinary creativity which followed the Revolution and lasted throughout most of the 1920s. Key to this period was Dziga Vertov's extraordinary film Man With a Movie Camera which documents the full spectrum of 1929 Soviet urban life with dazzling inventiveness. It was Vertov's exuberant montage and energetic lyricism which inspired Nyman to create his extraordinary score.
USSR | 1929 | black and white | silent with music score | 68 minutes | DVD5 | Original aspect ratio 1.33:1 | Region 2 DVD
If you're a Nyman fan, this is definitely for you. Otherwise, the earlier BFI release of the same film has not one but two alternative scores: a pounding, heroic, forward-with-the-Soviets affair from the Alloy Orchestra, closely based on Vertov's own notes of the kind of orchestral accompaniment he wanted for his film; and a second from the progressive group In the Nursery, gentler and more expressionist, drawing on state-of-the-art music technology. (As a third option, the BFI release includes a well-informed voice-over commentary from film historian Yuri Tsivian.)
On the DVD: Michael Nyman's Man with a Movie Camera comes to DVD packed in a hinged square metal tin reminiscent of the ones that hold small Dutch cigars. There are printed biogs of Vertov and Nyman, the latter rather cloyingly fulsome ("a man of impeccable musical credentials"). The transfer is excellent and pretty well complete; a few minor blemishes where the original nitrate stock had deteriorated scarcely detract. --Philip Kemp --This text refers to an alternate DVD edition.
Great DVD. The film itself is fascinating, and having the option to play it with different soundtracks is great, can make a huge difference to how you view the film. Read morePublished 2 months ago by Helen
Admirable usage of camera tricks for its time and a useful vision of the past of people at work and leisurePublished 6 months ago by It Stinks
I've wanted to watch this for years, and finally have. On the good side, it only wasted an hour; and actually the last 5 or 10 minutes was good quite experimental stuff, mostly... Read morePublished 11 months ago by A. Nonn
Sometimes frenetic, occasionally lyrical and witty demonstration of all the tricks that can be pulled by a movie camera, made all the more special by time and place; shot almost as... Read morePublished 20 months ago by Mario
Great film, very bad transfer. Described elsewhere on the interwebs as having the "ugly look of a VHS copy". I have it on VHS and it looks better than this. Read morePublished on 2 Feb. 2013 by Amazon Customer
A short but great film from the Soviet Union in the late 20s of last century at the time of the new silent film technology. Read morePublished on 17 May 2011 by Jacques COULARDEAU
Fascinating - shows live street scenes which are now a historical record plus the ingenuity of the camera work and editingPublished on 17 Sept. 2010 by Mrs. R. Jones