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The Reeler Blog

On the Lips

By S.T. VanAirsdale

It seems like yesterday we were haunting midtown to catch up with Lech Majewski, the peripatetic director who last May, at age 52, became the youngest filmmaker ever to be celebrated with a retrospective at the Museum of Modern Art. Of course, it wasn't yesterday -- we're all a year older, and the world premiere that opened the retrospective (under the title Blood of a Poet) is now screening as Glass Lips in a super-rare one-week engagement at the Pioneer Theater.

A scene from Lech Majewski's Glass Lips, screening this week in New York (Photo: International Film Circuit)

There have been some changes, the program notes, but on the whole expect the same captivating episodic texture that so impressed us in 2006:

(I)f it feels fragmented, do not worry -- you are on the right track. "It has a peculiar dimension," said Majewski, who sidelines as a poet, novelist, painter and composer. "On one hand this is kind of a feature film, which you will see tonight. But on the other, this is an assembly of 33 video pieces -- short features -- that can be viewed separately, and as such can be presented in an art gallery, viewed on 33 separate screens at the same time. So whichever way you view it will take you through this maze -- through this other experience. This will be the variation that you get. Also, the piece that you see tonight has a kind of linear allotment of the story. It can be switched around. So the segments you can move around and get a slightly different context."

Hence Glass Lips, which, while culled from elements of Poet, is itself a world premiere by a genuinely important filmmaker. Majewski was on hand for opening night and is probable to return this weekend; keep an eye on the Pioneer's Web site for up-to-date info as events warrant. It's arguably the best thing going this weekend in New York.

Posted at November 8, 2007 1:12 PM

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