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Hors Pistes, Volume 3: A Different Image Movement - arthouse and international DVD / foreign language DVD / short films DVD review
HORS PISTES, VOLUME 3: A DIFFERENT IMAGE MOVEMENT Not rated by the Motion Picture Association of America rating: 3 stars
Featuring: Meryl Streep, Tony Nation, Adam Guettel, Charline Grand, Andrew Kotting
Directors: Simmons, Eleonore Weber, Andrew Kotting   Studio: Microcinema
DVD release: 30 March 2010   Runtime: 143 minutes (1 disc)
Format: Color, DVD, NTSC
DVD Features: Aspect ratio 1.33:1, Audio tracks (Dolby Digital Stereo - English, French), Subtitles (English, French), Three short films (The Music of Regret, Les Hommes sans Gravité, In the Wake of a Deadad)

Andrew Kotting's *In the Wake of a Deadad* (from *Hors Pistes, Volume 3: A Different Image Movement*)"Hors piste" means, roughly, off the beaten track. It refers to uncompacted snow which, while more exciting to ski upon, is also more dangerous. Thus the pretense of the title of this collection of three shortish films. Whether they're dangerous or not is subject to debate, but they are all certainly off the beaten track.

"The Music of Regret" is based on many years of still photography by artist and novice film director Laurie Simmons. Simmons is noted for her pictures of ventriloquists' dummies and semi-personification of household objects. "The Music of Regret" is a more or less three-part musical, with the music composed by Michael Rohatyn. Puppets come to life and fight over jobs, engage in duets with Meryl Streep and, played by the Alvin Ailey II dance company, take the stage to audition for roles in the film.

Eléonore Weber's "Les Hommes sans Gravité" is a study of "desire in motion," according to the director. It features two men photographed in conjunction with the decor of a crumbling house. The narrative is languid in the extreme, if present at all, and the film is largely an exercise in impressionism.

"In the Wake of a Deadad" is Andrew Kötting's homage to his dead dad. He constructs larger-than-life blow-up dolls of his father and then sets them up in various locations where his father can no longer go, including gatherings of family and friends. The result is a kind of psycho-documentary that exorcises grief at the same time it amuses with its preposterous presumption of giganticism. Highly recommended.
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reviewed by Brian Charles Clark
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