On 23 February the Adelaide Film Festival hosted the world premiere of Paolo Cherchi Usai’s film Passio. The film is a compilation of silent found footage from a century of visual culture, taken from archives around the world, put to a score by Arvo Pärt. Cherchi Usai, director of the Australian National Film and Sound Archive, says that the film must only be seen as a live experience in a theatre. To this end he has apparently destroyed all the masters and vowed never to release the film on video. According to the festival blurb, it is “a masterwork of the first order, a stunning and revelatory film of surprising emotional and narrative power, that explores the impending crisis of visual culture and its reflection in politics and society. Its unsettling images, drawn from a century of filmmaking, are woven into a tapestry of mysterious beauty and violence.”

%d bloggers like this: