Tuesday, May 10, 2011

LAZZI, THE FIRST

Welcome, my slanging duffers, to the first 'lazzi'.  Lazzi is a term derived from the commedia dell'arte, a precursor to pantomime and the modern day circus, which achieved huge popularity during the sixteenth to eighteenth centuries.  It means 'tricks' or 'turns.'  These are comic routines performed by clowns, some of them jokes, others acts of skill. 
  I am going to borrow the term for this little sideshow, where I will present short films and video clips that feature clowns.  I will spare you anything too appalling, so depending on the overall quality of what I watch, this could be a short-lived aside.  But sure what does it matter; if you're reading this, it's not like you have anything better to do anyway!

First up is Clown (best to keep start simple, and keep it to the point!), which you can watch here:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r9TV1WwCuZ8

Clown is  a 2008 short film directed by Tate Steinsiek.  I assume he wrote it too, but IMDB doesn't actually list a writer's credit.  This, as you can imagine, is quite telling.
  Clown isn't bad, but it's far from good.  There isn't much of a story, but there are a couple of okay performances.  It stars Peter Greene, (best known as Zed from Pulp Fiction) and Norman Reedus (from AMC's The Walking Dead), but given how little they have to do here, it could have been anyone really.
  Clown is quite nicely shot.  The lighting and composition are good, and there is a palpable sense of menace.  The clown make-up is dark and effective, and the production values, though of varying quality, generally pass muster.  However this is the one thing I would expect this director to get right, given that most of his credits are as a special effects artist.
  What really lets Clown down though, is the editing.  It's appalling!  This is a really badly put together film, so what good work is on display in other departments is not used to it's best effect.  This further undermines the quality of what is already a mediocre piece.
  Clown is very much a student film, in that the filmmakers had a basic idea of what they wanted to achieve, but didn't have what it took to execute a decent story, or to create meaningful characters.  As a visual and mood exercise, I'd give it a passing grade.  Clown is a show reel piece and little more.  It passes six minutes relatively painlessly, but ultimately, pointlessly.
  As I wasn't able to embed the Clown video directly, here's a picture of a clown for you to look at:


I'm pretty sure this is the same image David Icke uses in his talks where he insists that Bush is a giant lizard from outer space.  Presumably he uses graphics like this to add credence to his arguments.  Riiiiiighttttt...

Next up, I'm going to exorcise my demons with the help of some Christian clowns.  You probably think I'm kidding…

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