Six Easy Pieces | Chicago Reader

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A major American independent who has lived in Europe for the past several years, Jon Jost has recently been reinventing himself in digital video, with results that have ranged from the soporific (London Brief) to the endlessly fascinating and beautiful (the silent Muri Romani). Six Easy Pieces evokes both these extremes. In his films, Jost has worked in narrative, essayistic, and experimental modes. Here the mode is mainly experimental, albeit with some strong documentary elements. Shooting in Portugal and Italy, training his camera on such subjects as a museum, a car trip, street kids, cobblestones, and little girls swimming, and employing various kinds of narration and music, Jost is exploring video as a sort of painting. At times the material seems either touristic or alienated to a fault; at its most engaging, Jost?s formalist reflexes and technical mastery command one?s grateful attention. But he generally comes across here as an artist in search of his subjects. 68 min.

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