Marco Brambilla may have made his debut, and his name, directing 1993's Demolition Man, but these days he's happiest making concept video art pieces and the occasional Kanye West video. His latest work, a 3D video collage called Evolution (Megaplex), assembles iconic scenes from about 400 movies to tell the history of the world in the space of a few minutes. Should we pop the disc in a canister and send it into space right now?
Premiering in an outside venue last December to a collated, hip crowd during Art Basel Miami, Evolution will get its first European screening on September 9 and 10 at the Venice Film Fesitval, which opened Wednesday and runs through September 10. Whit Stillman's latest, Damsels in Distress, will close the festival.
Brambilla's piece marks a few firsts: Werner Herzog (Cave of Forgotten Dreams) and Wim Wenders (Pina) may have already made the first art house 3D films, but this is likely the first conceptual film to use 3D to drive its message home. It is also the first piece of video art screening as an "Official Selection" at the Venice festival, where Evolution will play for the first time in a theater.
While it may be too jarring and visually dense to enjoy the old-fashioned way, Brambilla's over-the-top "mural" is a mega-trailer-mashup in overdrive, poking fun at anyone who's ever edited a mashup or watched one on the Internet. Brambilla is also aiming directly at Hollywood itself. On his Web site he says, "The source material is genre film; the samples are looped and combined in a remix that seamlessly moves through past, present, and future providing a satirical take on the bombast of the big-budget 'epic.'" Here's a look again at Brambilla's collaboration with Kanye West, nominated but not a winner at the VMAs.
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