A terrific animated film from 2005 directed by Hywel Griffith of Griffilms Animation Studio, featuring a poem by Ifor ap Glyn, two-time winner of the National Eisteddfod of Wales. Music and dub are by Meilyr Tomos.
Oh my beloved country
When I sing of your separation
I return to myself
But all I hear in return,
Is the language of guns…
A poetry film in the style I like to think of as illustrated spoken word—a style that works particularly well for poems that blend the personal and the political. Sofian Khan of Capital K Pictures directed. Here’s the Vimeo description:
An exiled Pakistani poet finds fresh inspiration in his new home, while reflecting on the tragedy of partition that has left a legacy of war and strife in his beloved land. Fragments of a globalized world seem to coalesce here on fifth avenue, strung together in the poet’s mind.
Directed by Sofian Khan / Cinenmatography – Bob Blankemeier / Original Score – Joshua Green / Sound + Mix – Evan Manners / Animation – Will Clark / Makeup – Jackie Push / Starring – Arik Hartman
The English translation is by Annie Ali Khan. I couldn’t find a website for Hasan Mujtaba, but he’s active on Twitter.
A new film by Helen Dewbery using a text by the French-British poet Anna-May Laugher, with music by Kevin MacLeod. According to the credits, it was “created as part of a elephantsfootprint workshop led by Helen Dewbery and Chaucer Cameron with thanks to Hilda Sheehan for inviting us to be part of Poetry Swindon”. For more on Elephant’s Footprint, see their website and Vimeo page.
…a collection of snow figures to mourn the dead
the dead man of snow
the mourners of snow
the ground covered
while the refugee camps
are filled with freezing people
the tents bulge under the snow…
A new, multilingual videopoetry collaboration by Marie Silkeberg and Ghayath Almadhoun. Here are the credits from the YouTube description:
film by: Marie Silkeberg & Ghayath Almadhoun
poem: Snö by Marie Silkeberg, 2014
english translation: Frank Perry
arabic translation: Ghayath Almadhoun
camera: Marie Silkeberg & Ghayath Almadhoun & shared films from the internet
music: Hanna Hartman
If you haven’t been keeping up with the Late Love Poems film project (30 films featuring the poetry of Steve Griffiths in 30 weeks), you’re in for a particular treat this week, with the debut of Film 7. Griffiths comments:
This is an important poem for me, about an extraordinary moment of realisation when you fully see the individuality of the person you love. I read it at our wedding for that reason. What’s been done to it in this film is something else. It was the first poem I worked on really hard after unhappy trials in front of the camera, and I rediscovered levels, nuances, turns of rhythm and pace that I’d forgotten since I wrote it. Then there’s Eamon Bourke’s film work, and the first substantial, astonishingly sensitive, musical input from Ivan “Ogmios” Owen, of battlerap fame on YouTube, who I’ve known since he was two. The way it falls together feels special.
“7 Painters is a film composition I made for 7 ekphrastic haiku by Gabriel Rosenstock,” writes Marc Neys A.K.A. Swoon, noting that it’s his second collaboration with the poet after Farrera earlier this year. Click through for texts (including the original Irish), stills, audio, and additional process notes.
Making poetry films and videopoems with texts originally sparked by other works of art presents the filmmaker with a bit of a conundrum: whether to suggest or include those art works, and if so, how? Here, Swoon seems to be responding purely to the words. But this works, I think, because the link between text and footage remains oblique enough that we might be watching what the painter, too, saw before taking up the brush.
Filmmaker E’lisha Holmes, A.K.A. E’lisha Jule, approached Langston Hughes’ three-line poem in the same way some poetry filmmakers like to approach haiku, with the text coming at the end as a culmination of, or a response to, the footage. Given the subject matter here, this approach allows an effective, oblique resolution of the film’s mounting tension.