Sunday, 3 November 2013

The Bells of Atlantis

The Bells of Atlantis (9mins approx.) – Ian Hugo – Colours morph and bleed in pooled reflections as footage blends and crossfades into indecipherable oscillations of itself. Most of the film focuses on the reflections of light on water, these become alien, oceanic, cosmic and at times almost biological. Anais Nin, who appears in the film lying in a suspended hammock, narrates the disorientating and unhinged psychedelia with her equally unsettling prose: ‘You see all things through a curtain of sea, I remember my first birth in water’; ‘the terror and joy of murders accomplished in silence.’ Her hammock seems to be suspended across the ribs of a beached shipwreck, we get skeletal and bleared shots of the shipwreck, making it seem ominous and ritualistic.  There are later paralleled shots of what appears to be a silhouetted crucifixion, amidst the pink flare of efflorescing light. The film’s soundtrack of alien-contact ‘bleeps’ and odd ambience was created by the pioneering American electronic music duo, Louis and Bebe Barron (who provided the first entirely electronic film score for the MGM film -  Forbidden Planet, 1956).

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