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A Spell To Ward Off Darkness
Northwest Film Forum
Seattle, WA
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A Spell To Ward Off Darkness
Nov 15

(Ben Rivers and Ben Russell, 2013, Estonia/France/Germany, DCP, 98 min)

Director Ben Russell in attendance!
With introduction and Q&A moderated by film critic Jay Kuehner!

Saturday, Nov 15 at 07:00PM

The first major collaboration of celebrated film and media-makers Ben Rivers (Two Years at Sea) and Ben Russell (Let Each One Go Where He May) proposes a different dialectic for artistic partnership. A mysterious loner roams across three movements: a commune on a small Estonian island, the majestic wilderness of Northern Finland, and a black metal concert in Norway. The lead performance by Brooklyn-based musician Robert A.A Lowe fuses the psychedelic, mystical threads of Russell's work and the dedicated nomadism of Rivers'.

Oscillating between fiction and nonfiction worlds, A Spell To Ward Off Darkness explores and blurs the borders between documentary, art, and cinema, raising questions about cinema's transformative potential in our present moment.

   Don't miss a program of Ben Russell shorts at the Grand Illusion on November 17! A Spell to Ward Off Darkness ticket holders receive $1 off tickets at the GI.

Ben Russell / 20122014 / 70min / HD video
at the Grand Illusion Cinema

Taking its title from a 15th century Hieronymus Bosch triptych in which the pleasures of Eden are conflated with the torments of Hell, this new trilogy of (mostly) non-fiction works by artist-filmmaker Ben Russell and occasional collaborator Jim Drain examines the ecstatic limits of utopia in the present.  Moving from a documentary portrait of Atlantis to a vertiginous inquiry into immortality to a post-colonial vision of Melanesian cargo cults, these films take a visceral, embodied, and ethnographic approach towards their subject (which is also us). From Malta to Greece to Vanuatu to Miami to Seattle: utopia is now!  Or, in the words of Samuel Beckett, "What do we do now, now that we are happy?"


Northwest Film Forum (View)
1515 12th Ave
Seattle, WA 98122
United States




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