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Michael Nyman's - Man with a Movie Camera [DVD]


Price: £7.99 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over £10. Details
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£7.99 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over £10. Details Only 5 left in stock. Sold by jim-exselecky and Fulfilled by Amazon. Gift-wrap available.

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Product details

  • Directors: Dziga Vertov
  • Format: PAL
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 4:3 - 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: U
  • Studio: Bfi
  • DVD Release Date: 23 Jun. 2008
  • Run Time: 68 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0017QMXLU
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 57,451 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Reviews

Product Description

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.

Special features

  • Remastered and restored
  • Fully uncompressed PCM stereo audio

USSR | 1929 | black and white | silent with music score | 68 minutes | DVD5 | Original aspect ratio 1.33:1 | Region 2 DVD

From Amazon.co.uk

As you might guess from the rather impertinent possessive in the title, Michael Nyman's Man with a Movie Camera is a re-release of Dziga Vertov's 1929 experimentalist classic provided with a score by Michael Nyman. Those who know and love Nyman's music--and come to that, those who know and dislike it--will know pretty well what to expect: fluent orchestral minimalism turned out by the yard. The mood and the tempo scarcely vary, no matter what Vertov's showing us or how fast or slow the rhythm of his cutting. The effect is to tone down the excitement and audacity of Vertov's ideas and render them safe and even a touch bland.

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.

Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

24 of 24 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 25 Oct. 2000
Format: DVD
I first saw this on the big-screen and it stands up as one of the few films I could have watched again immediately. For an experimental film from 1920's Russia (an experimental and exciting time for the arts all round in the early years of the Soviet state) it's stood the test of time remarkably well. Yes it's 'arty', yes, it could be accused of self-indulgence, but it works! It has trick shots, odd camera-angles, multiple images and serves as a fascinating insight into a day in the life of a Soviet city. The the man with the movie camera himself makes regular intrusions into frame.
And the new soundtrack by In the Nursery works well too - it's not exactly cutting-edge, but its pleasant, electronic soundwashes sit well with the film and never try to overpower it. It's been criticised somewhat unfairly, but after all,Dziga was using the most up-to-the-minute technology he could get, so I'm sure he wouldn't mind.
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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 17 Oct. 2003
Format: DVD
This has got to be the definitive DVD version of Vertov's Man With a Movie Camera.
The choice of two scores plus a separate commentary track makes this package even more appealing. Most notable score is by In The Nursery who manage to produce a musical blendof the symphonic with the modern, the ambient with the danceable and the acoustic with the synthetic.
Watching Vertov's masterpiece with In The Nursery's specially commissioned score makes each and every viewing a new voyage of discovery. A highly recommended purchase indeed.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Mattia Varriale on 8 Oct. 2006
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Dziga Vertov, 1929, definitely not the kind of movie to watch on a saturday night with friends.
But a must see for those interested in the history of film. As this "movie" was produced - 77 years ago -, the concept of film was completely different to what it is now. This shows how a man, without the filmic knowledge of a present-day director, manages to make breath-taking scenes never shot before.
Dziga Vertov, can probably be seen as one of the inventors of the first long running movies.
A must see, and an historical masterpiece!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Luc REYNAERT TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 6 July 2013
Format: DVD
Like C. Th. Dreyer's `La Passion de Jeanne d'Arc' (1928), Dziga Vertov's silent movie (1929) had a major impact on cinematographic techniques. While C. Th. Dreyer's movie excels through its camera movements and focal changes of lenses, D. Vertov's film shines through its shooting angles and, most importantly, through its editing with one image shots, split screens and a beautifully flowing movement throughout the whole film, based on inside screen motions, the transitions and the links between the scenes and a splendid timing.
If its techniques didn't influence directly major filmmakers, D. Vertov was at least their predecessor. One thinks immediately of Alain Resnais and Leni Riefenstahl.
Dziga Vertov was perhaps himself inspired by Fritz Lang's Metropolis.

Regarding the content, Dziga Vertov's movie is also groundbreaking. It is not only a movie in a movie, for there is a third level: D. Vertov adds the projection of his own movie in his movie! It is also the first movie which records the birth of a human being.
Moreover, D. Vertov edited his shots with juxtapositions, like wedding/divorce scenes or the change of left/right directions inside the screen.

Michael Nyman's music underlines admirably the image flow in this astonishing movie.
This eternal masterpiece of world cinema is a must see for all movie buffs.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By bernie TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 15 Feb. 2009
Format: DVD
A well designed film by Dziga Vertov's that looks like a documentary than show the man and the city. We are constantly looking at fictional city where it is compared to the man with a camera. This film shot in black and white in 1929 is often compared to "Berlin: symphony of a great city" however this film is much more.

The real interest in the movie is how it is cut, and the choices of what to film. Every time you turn around you will see something not of other documentaries. What is real and what is film reality?

The voice over is just as good if not better than the original film as it describes how the film was made.

An added plus is just looking at the ancient technology. And then again how they are ahead of us in electric transportation.

This film requires several viewings.

Berlin: Symphony of a Great City
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By David Fairweather on 24 Jan. 2010
Format: DVD
I first heard this piece live in Bristol at a Michael Nyman concert, and was blown away with it. I bought the DVD expecting it to be a poor relation to the live performance. But nothing could be furthet from the truth. I don't know exactly what it is that makes it special, but I think it is a unique combination of music and the original movie. Every time I watch it the images and music create a wonderfully special atmosphere. Ok, being a Nyman fan I am biased, but of all the Nyman music I have heard this is in my top 5 favorite works.
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
This is one of those many old films that film buffs tend to read about. It had a sort of uninspiring title but it is well worth watching. Vertov ( not his real name. That was Kaufmann) and his brother certainly made a fascinating portrait of a Russian town in 24 hours- although it was actually filmed in three towns over the period -. The editing is superb and any one interested in this side of film making should watch this film and take notes. The only bugbear I found with this copy is the soundtrack which is so repitative that one tends to get slightly bored. It is, of course, a modern insertion. A pity really. It would have been better to have kept the original- whilst not so inspiring, perhaps- if only to maintain the film makers' ideas.
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