For the next seven weeks, the Oberhausen International Short Film Festival will present "Film Studies in Motion", a Web Series curated by Volker Pantenburg and Kevin B. Lee. This series, available on the festival's website and Facebook page, presents weekly selections of analytical video essays on the web, in preparation for Pantenberg and Lee's presentation "Whatever happened to Bildungsauftrag? – Teaching cinema on TV and the Web", scheduled for April 28 at the festival.
Press Play will track the series, posting four or five of the selected videos each week as they also become available on the Oberhausen website.
This week is an initial sampling of exemplary works from the emerging genre of online video essays on cinema. Combined they cover a wide range of subject matter (a genre, a sequence in a film, a cinematic motif, a director’s body of work). They demonstrate a variety of stylistic approaches to the video essay form, using an array of techniques: montage and rhythm, split screens, narration, creative use of on-screen text, etc. These works, some of them conceived as multi-part series, are made typically on computers with consumer-grade editing software, but they display an ingenuity that is comparable to that of the films they explore.
Diary on David Holzman Part 1: The Sons and Daughters of David
Kevin B. Lee (2011)
This video essay links an under-seen 1967 American independent film with the current wave of reality TV and video blogs that pervade contemporary culture.
Volker Pantenburg is assistant professor for Visual Media with the main focus “Research of the Moving Image” at the media faculty of the Bauhaus-Universität Weimar.
Kevin B. Lee is Editor in Chief of IndieWire’s PressPlay Video Blog and contributor to Roger Ebert.com. Follow him on Twitter.