Bruce Baillie

Quick Billy (1970) 16mm, VHS NTSC, color & b/w, 56 min

Genre: Experimental

Keywords: Personal / Diary / Journal

QUICK BILLY: A Horse Opera in four reels, conceived for viewing with a single projector, allowing the natural pauses between reels. The experience of transformation between life and death, death and birth, or rebirth in four reels. The'rolls' took the form of a correspondence, or THEATRE, between their author and Stan Brakhage, in the winter of 1968-69. They're kind of magic cousins of the film. A personal record of the author's psychic journey and physical recovery during a period of his life which might be described essentially as one of transformation...'the dark wood encountered in the middle of life's journey' (Dante)... As poetic cinema, its significance to the world is perhaps in its narration of a singular phenomenon of our time, implicitly revealing those ancient 'rules' of transit evolved over the centuries; e. g., the BARDO THODOL (The Tibetan Book of the Dead), as well as Dante Alighieri's own discoveries in the time of the Fourteenth Century Europe, etc. The BARDO THODOL, from which Parts I-III are adopted structurally, admonishes (the deceased)...'a time of uncertainty, undertaking nothing -- fear not the terrifying forms of your own psyche...' Mankind deceased encountering a spectacular stream of images it once viewed as Reality. The film concludes with Part IV, a western one-reeler, which dramatically summarizes the material of Parts I, II, and III, in abstract form. All the film and tape was recorded in Fort Bragg, California, next to the Pacific Ocean. A final subtitle reads 'ever westward eternal rider.' Is it the image of Sisyphus or of Buddha? A beautifully incoherent work of art! A journey towards unity with this recent American film, both macroscopic and universal in its view. -- Hans Helmut Rudele, Filmdichter und Luftpiloten, DIE ZEITUNG, Hamburg, Dec. 12. 1970.

Rental: $140.00
16mm Rental: $140.00

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