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La Region Centrale

"La Région Centrale" (1971) by Michael Snow was shot with a robot camera on a mountain top in the Canadian winter.

La Region Centrale

Michael Snow: La Région Centrale - the camera

Filmed on a barren plateau in the Canadian wilderness, La Région Centrale was made using a mechanical device that could be programmed to control all of the camera's functions and movements. For over three hours it spins, spirals and pans in all directions, zooms in on details on the ground, and zooms out to reveal the distant horizon.

Throughout his career, Michael Snow questioned film's conceptual foundations, and La Région Centrale is his most elaborate deconstruction of cinematic perception. It destroys the traditional theatrical relationship between the camera and what it records. Not only is there no one behind or in front of the camera, but its subject is nothing less than the entirety of what it can see in all directions. The camera itself becomes a kind of disembodied consciousness exploring its own environment. The culmination of the experiments Snow began with Wavelength and Back and Forth, La Région Centrale is both philosophically and visually dizzying.

source: Tom Vick, All Movie Guide

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