Sunday, January 17, 2010

Cosmonaut Polyakov or Avatar?

Looking for an alternative to James Cameron's Avatar? I am. I haven't seen Avatar despite some of my closest friends demanding that I see it. I'm too much of a realist when it comes to films. When I see how fake the wigs or the lighting, especially the lighting- I'm reminded of the Hollywood machine with all it's formulas and tricks. I don't doubt I'll enjoy Avatar, it was engineered that way- it's a whole 2hrs of engineered cinematic experience- not one nostril hair left un-engineered. But that's really all it is, a formula.

I'm looking forward instead to watching Dana Ranga's Cosmonaut Polyakov, a film selected by Urs Fischer, that's being screened through-out the span his solo show at the New Museum. It's a documentary film about space and politics just like Avatar, that's why I thought it would make for a great alternative. But the reality might make for a better take-away, Polyakov holds the record for being in space for the longest span of time, one year and two months.. and "for the first time he speaks publicly about the KGB, being in exile, and the struggle of space travel."

Friday January, 22. At the New Museum Theater

Cosmonaut Polyakov(2007)
110 min, Russian language with English subtitles
Dir. Dana Ranga
This highly acclaimed 2007 documentary directed by Dana Ranga (East Side Story, and Story). Cosmonaut Polyakov follows Russian cosmonaut Valery Polyakov, who holds the record of the longest trip into space: one year and two months. For the first time he speaks publicly about the KGB, being in exile, and the struggle of space travel.

other films in Urs Fischers Film Selections:

January 22, Friday
5 p.m.: Cosmonaut Polyakov
7 p.m.: Up the Yangtze

February 5 Friday:
5 p.m.: Touki Bouki
7 p.m.: Yves Saint Laurent 5 avenue Marceau 75116 Paris

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