Saturday, December 6, 2008

Review #3: Martok

What I'm Reviewing: A Documentary Video
Director: Julius Gaul
Production Company: Independent/Student
The Video:

I was going to start this review off by saying "I know what you're thinking". But I don't know what you're thinking. That would be dishonest journalism. Even by saying that, I think I break the fourth wall of journalism, which when done in a subtle way can--WAIT. Journalism is all fourth wall, what's wrong with me?

I know what you're thinking, "Jacob. That clever little backspace key exists for a reason". Well, the letter sequence QWERTY exists for a reason too, but that doesn't make me question every typographical decision that's been made in history, so come off it would ya? You're making me feel like a big ol' jerk.

Now, on to things that are relevant.

To the five people that read this (if I'm lucky), you already know why I haven't updated in such a long time that a crystal fortress has been built around the blog and it now has it's own humanoid/fungi species, characterized by first names like Etania and Jareth. Just be happy that I'm trying to stay somewhat consistent.

Now I'm going to tell you about a man I know by the name of Julius Gaul or Julia Glaüs, or however you spell it. I went through my first two semesters of communications studies with this fine strapping young Glüten and my first thought when I met him was "whoa. This guy has balls." And boy could he slam dunk 'em on a dime my friend. What? He was good with basketballs that he owned. Right? Ah yeah, you know what I'm talking about. Right?

Anyway, we went our feathered ways from the flocks that we flounced within. Flulius Foolmenot flounders frequently in the field of video while I frollick in flicks of film F-stops. Formative flights of mental fluency fractionate our few findings against philistinism. Fuck! Your physiognomy is flecked with feces from my findings of favored effs. Sorry.

So here we both stand in our opposite production streams. While I was puzzling over how to get a light reader to tell me what the axis of the earth will be in 2041, Julius went and made this here little video based on a mutual friend of ours. That friend's name is Martok. Well that's not his real name, but for legal purposes and all that I can't say his real name is Jeff Klassen. Wait no.

Ah shit, there you go with that backspace key theory again. Enough is enough! Get a job Joon-yah! This economy's not gonna save itself while you criticize my every key stroke. And I think you know enough about strokes already boy! That and more on my Jacob does Impersonations of TV Fathers! dvd. But enough of what Martok calls "Jacob zingers".

This documentary portrays an environment of isolation off which Martok feeds to spawn his creativity. But this is more than just a quick "journal entry" genre film recording an artist's "process". This short film is a visceral, jaw-dropping account of a young man facing a false democracy in which consent is mass produced. By walling himself in, Martok creates a microcosm of the brutally formalized existence in which we all live. The music of Martok perpetuates it's own barbarous layer of calculated standardization as it limits the simple resources of sight, smell, touch, and taste. A hard thing for music to do; and the reason Martok's atmospheric interpretations and ascriptions to breaking out of this standardized mold are so effective.

This is also why the film proves ineffective as an artform. By documenting the lifestyle of Martok, Gauls adds a sight to the sound of confusion in a profit-margin world. This is not a good thing, because even Martok's use of sound becomes a questionable variable in his quest for a peaceful antithesis to everyday geography. By appearing on film, Martok has berated the consistency of his musical medium. Actually, maybe in order for his sound to be perfect, perhaps there ought not be a sound at all? Breaking down conventions is what this is all about, and even employing a medium in any effective way just builds those conventions up again. It's like bringing an old hooker to a new barn: the cock's gonna get confused and misled.

So shame on you Gaulgoyle and Marsbar, may your sheltered existences bring on a purer art form. Take John Cage's 2 minutes and whatever seconds of silence. A clear parody that could have been a much larger statement of the lack of interior design that resonates neutral "vibes" in each of our souls.

Did I mention Julius Gaul is most definitely a great basketball player? Because back when I first met him he sho


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