Let's Get Rid of Society

by Pablo Klappenbach

An element possible to think certain form of accomplishment that, without doubts, is independent is the urgency. The urgent thing implies a necessity to produce and to show that it also surpasses the conditions of production and diffusion, that descontextualizados ignore cánones industrialists by, but because, when being organized based on the mercantilista principle cost/benefits, are either suffocating at the time of watching the world, or dictatorial and acartonantes. The urgency of the registry, on the contrary, is based on the necessity to deciphr of another one mode, to operate without so many mediations, to orient itself in search of a voice that can be biographer. The production of Dave Markey (as well as those of other North American producers independent which they pass in these days by Buenos Aires, as it is the case of Robert Frank or Bill Plympton, as it were before with Jonas Mekas, John Cassavetes or James Benning) are located in that site from which to film is always a freedom gesture.

In 1991: The Year Broke Punk, first that calls the attention is its constitution like a dirty and careless film, without doubts punkie . The film follows Sonic Youth in a tour by Europe, in which Nirvana or Ramons did of teloneros bands like. It is the launching of the group outside the circuit to under North American, but still moving with that attitude. The film perfectly accompanies the experience by the musicians since, in his own formal organization, it makes of the necessity a virtue and takes advantage of that technical poverty to constitute a cinematography punk. The camera always in hand, the misalignments in the center, the difficulties to obtain a good illumination of the personages live do the aesthetic one of the film, accompanied by an own tasteless sound of the concert. And, soon, the payasadas ones of the musicians outside scene, his to ramble and its spirit yonkie are drawing up a drawing that only can be done by who paints his village. There is no intention of depth or a theoretical speech on the sort (this can think from the title and historical happening of those bands), but an obsession to obtain a heroic representation of that experience without sublimings nor configurations (in spite of the impressive thing that turn out to be with the voice and the body of Cobain in scene, its figure is even free of the myth).

The assembly of the film is oscillating between the public exhibition of the musicians during the recitales and their private coexistence. There are presentations nor no titles that introduce to each band because what is wanted it is to give account of that continuum that supposes a tour: if the spectator becomes jumbled (even though he is not fan deliberate of the sort) in the film, he must to that he perceives through the camera the experience punk, in conflict with his more traditional identity. One does not treat, then, of how near or distant it is the reality that a film presents/displays, but of the ways in which it operates with that material to represent. The film obtains its objective because it understands that to show it does not mean to have a crane and seven or eight cameras that can cover it everything; on the contrary, its triumph resides in which its own materiality is compared with the one of the personages to portray, simple punk rockers blunting to the impact that means to become a cultural material to be sold. And in this sense, Dave Markey manipulates of such way the filmed images that a justification or an explanation is not from the musicians.

It is only a registry (in the poverty of the pretenciones it leaves the best thing this film), but with this coarse one to obtain a film, that it involves the spectator (makes the judgment that does) and it forgets unnecessary estilizaciones and that in many opportunities they are contradictory or reactionary. Perhaps contraejemplo is enough to show the valid thing of the attitude: Pablo Ragman commented that for rolling Family they had to construct a model of detachable rolling house that was used for the takings to make in study. The result is a boring and inexpressive film that moves away it of its subject: the Argentine family. The aesthetic one of Ragman becomes impoverished to the time that its equipment (whereas in World Crane and the Buenosairean One managed to capture a personage and until a philosophical attitude of the Argentine subject, taking off itself of the costumbrismo). On the contrary, Dave Markey manages to capture as much what it persecutes, in this film as in The Slog Movie (in where adolescent Californian Hardcore Punk is disturbed as much as it's trying to be), from knowing the tone that demands certain context or group. And it is why his camera, always badly placed, always on the verge of losing the image, perfectly understands the rebellious attitude, a little anarchical and quite cynical his personages punkies.

List of credits

1991: The Year Broke Punk

The U.S.A., 1992.

English, color, 99m.

Director: Dave Markey.

Interpreters: Mark Arm, Lori Barber, Kat Bjelland, NIC Close, Kurt Cobain, Joe Cole, Don Fleming, Kim Gordon, David Grohl, Mike Johnson, Dave Kendall, Michelle Leon, Courtney Love, Matt Lukin, Dave Markey, J. Mascis, Craig Montgomery, Thurston Moore, Bob Mould, Murph, Krist Novoselic, Give Peters, Dee Dee Ramone, Joey Ramone, Johnny Ramone, Marky Ramone, Reads Renaldo, Susanne Sasic, Steve Shelley, Jay Spiegel, Peter Vanderbilde, Eric Vermillion.

Exhibited in the VII° Festival the International of Independent Cinema of Buenos Aires and the I° BAFreeCI.