2020 / 45min / found footage
Broadcast at FID Marseille.
Recycle / Resume / Review / Redo / Rebuild
Take a scalpel, cut these words to keep only the re- prefix.
Make it your main character, a detective.
Place it among macabre words, dark phrases where the night keeps raining.
Once the operation is complete, the investigation can begin.
The images in this film are taken from over 150 pre-existing films. Produced as part of the Post-Diploma Arts and sound creations Bourges 2019. The sound filming was carried out during the radio sessions of RadioRadio located in the studios of Bourges. With the support of Jérome Joy, Roger Cochini, Jean Michel Ponty, Lionel Marchetti. This film was produced and postproduced by Wrong Films and Microclimat.
From Amityville to the Final Destination franchise, from Z movies to Tokyo Sonata, Maxime le Moing has patiently summoned no less than 150 films to make Salle obscure. A mere exercise in erudition from a film-lover? This “dark room” houses much more. At the beginning, like bait, a revised and truncated version of that iconic scene in Psycho. The cruelty of an inaugural gesture that calls for many other crimes, and first of all, that of the dismembered films themselves, reassembled for a paradoxically fetishist journey. Its apparent movement: a wild race through the dark, striped with windstorms, thunderstorms, floods. In this film, sewn in strips but faceless, like a monstrous body, we become detectives in search of the liquid matter of our own memory. This erotic game of images opens onto an underworld following a disrupted, shaken-up narrative logic. Mechanics of fantasy at work, like the shots of cinema machinery (tribute to Coppola and De Palma) that punctuate the film, the room is haunted with remote whispers, as if a secrete conversation were happening off-screen. Maxime Le Moing slides along and plunges us into this deceptive and fun game, as if lost in the ambivalent pleasure of images that cinema fixes to our souls, that fertile ground where our desire grows out of the corpse of our imagined memories. A projection in this Salle obscure, evocative of Freud’s dark room of course, the little inner theatre of our unconscious, this factory of dreams and ghosts, creates here an ode to the exquisite shadows of cinema, to better let ourselves be submerged in it. (N.F.)
A teaser on this link : teaser_backroom_Maxime_Le_Moing_360p.mp4
Salle Obscure mixes more than 150 films, and continues, after La Banlieue du Skeud (presented at FID in 2018), to explore the technique of mash-up. Where does your interest in this practice come from?
The first is that I am not an image maker, but I really like to discover the ability of sound to twist it. The mash-up gives me immediate access to this relationship. The second is from an economic point of view because it is an ideal cinematographic practice for the poor. The slowness to release funds and make a film kills my creative energy too much, so I began to manipulate the film material itself to make cinema. There are also political reasons. The filmmaker only chews on and remembers elements of his life that he has absorbed, notably by watching other films, to create a distorting mirror of our world. He continues the extension of films thought from others. For each film, there is not ‘one’ but ‘of’ authors. To make a mash-up is to accept that the cinema can overflow with uncontrolled manipulations, scattered consultations, vulgar distortions, it is to shake certain anti-filmic concept that only a law of the market could put in place. Cinema has lagged far behind this idea of recovery compared to other mediums, especially in music with sampling, poetry for cut-up ...
Salle Obscure is a film in the form of an investigation which advances without really revealing its plot. How did you envisage the scenario at the start?
I never leave with a script to make a film, but with aesthetic proposals. For Salle Obscure, I wanted to make a film echoing the writings of Barthes around the death of the author, by pressing on the will to make a film "scriptible" through stolen films. I also wanted to counterbalance my previous very talkative film by working in a quasi-silent manner, allowing me to work out the sound under its gestural and sensitive component. Scabrous and very funny sound shoots took place. For example, the rain was made thanks to a concerto of packets of crisps, the telephone rings are melodies on the accelerated saxophone, the repeated blows of horns were recorded in the middle of the night in the city center, the microphones placed remotely on a balcony of an apartment barking noise-producing actors who took themselves for dogs! The choice of the thriller seemed to me to justify this research ...
The soundtrack and sound effects do not belong to the extracts from the films used, but everything was built by yourself and takes on a humorous look. Can you explain this choice?
I’m always looking to unzip the universe I’m immersed in. My favorite magic tricks are those of which I know the cogs, but the illusion of which works. In Salle Obscure, I like that we are ready to play, knowing that it is made of odds and ends, poor sounds sometimes recorded under boundary conditions. I like to feel the cog and that creates contrast to these perfect images. This sensation, well proportioned, produces comedy. Back when I was organizing the missed film festival, I liked to feel these little means that tried to operate a dream machine. I reproduce it with the sound that derails the fourth wall to remind that there is something happening behind it.
Can you tell us more about the invented language present in the film?
This invented language refers as much to Lettrist poems, to the zaoum of Russian futurist poets, but also and above all to a single group in Moselle (where I live) where singer sings in Platt dialect. At each concert, no one understands what he is saying, but he screams so loudly that we know that it is all a rage that comes out of his mouth. This rage, you can put the words you want, it must above all bring it to life. And at each end of the concert, the catharsis stunned everyone now shirtless and without even having understood a word. Besides, one evening I went to see the singer, who, being often too much on to remember the words to be profaned, told me that he sang in yogurt. I told myself that this was what I wanted to reproduce in a film: yogurt which we understand nothing, but which we live intensely ... So I invented this language which I call Zcwil, and which is a tongue-in-cheek gloubi, like a baby rattling with his vocal cords.
How long did it take to make the film?
The film required 2 years of creations. The first year was a grueling year where I organized the images, assembled them to make a film (it had to be a feature film at the base, more than 350 films selected) and created sound shootings, in particular within the radio. from Bourges entitled Radio Radio. This first year was supported as part of the post-diploma Arts and sound creations in Bourges. The second year was completed with the help of Wrong Films production and lovely technicians. I found it a very pleasant requirement. The film would be nothing without this support. As we had no means, this made it possible to decant the film several times, and to take it up from another angle with more conviction. Salle Obscure closes a trilogy of the mash up exercised since 2014, after The truth about the year 2000 and La banlieue du Skeud.
RECORDS IN THE HOOD
2017 / 19min / Color / found footage et animation
Rap is a permeable musical genre with cinema. French rap albums
are full of sound scenes, where the singers have various roles to transcribe the city in which they lived. Purchase in a kebab, pickpocketing, telephone billing, graffiti on a cop car, sale of narcotics that goes wrong, all these auditory interstices slipped into their albums made me want to compose, only with this materials, the landscape of a suburb. "Records in the Hood" offer an auditory representation of a suburb fantasized by French rappers. But a blur slips into the pictorial interpretation of these interludes. Total simulacrum under surreal perfusion, the characters come alive in a shadow play decontextualizing these sounds in the multiple frames of an anthology of contemporary architecture. The deliberately offbeat tone removes the effects of reality induced in the words of these authors, leaving the solid stereotypes suburban bare in this setting so often swallowed by violence, the industry of hedonism, the cult of the body, that clips and media spread.
The film in free consultation and downloadable on this link : La_banlieue_du_skeud_Records_in_the_Hood_Maxime_Le_Moing_719x404_VOSTEN.mp4
Diffusion at the Som'City festival /
Diffusion at the Resonances film festival in Bruxelles /
Diffusion at the Videoformes film festival 2019 /
Diffusion at Art Souterrain festival in Montreal 2019 /
Diffusion at the High Coast Film Festival in Sweden 2018 / Best short film experimental Prize 2018 /
Diffusion at the FID Festival of Marseille 2018 /
Diffusion at the Kinepolis of Longwy 2018 /
Diffusion during the concert of Biga Ranx and Don Choa (Zikamine festival) at the BAM of Metz 2017 /
Diffusion at the Cameo Ariel of Metz 2017 /