“I am not in love with you and you are not in love with me and we will not fall in love with each other.”

If you enter John Cook in Google, you find governours, solicitours, an Ontario politician, clergyman, golfer, US army officer, proffessional speedway rider and only very very far down the list you bump in to “John Cook (filmmaker)” – whilst the same John cook, the fashion photographer is not mentioned at all.

The English Wikipedia informs us that “Cook is considered, despite his small filmography, an important figure in Austrian Cinema.”

The German Wikipedia – under which you should find more stuff about important Austrian people – gives us an Australian Graphic Novellist called John Cook, an engineer in Kenya of British descend and the notice, that in April 2007 users called “Peter200” and “Cesar” erased an entry about “John Cook (director)”.

Digging deeper, you find that both articles who had been written and than erased were created by Wikipedia outsiders – user “Marvel” who has nothing else on his list than this John Cook piece he wrote for nothing and no one and user “oduffo” who is lifelong blocked coz of insult and defamation.

Useless people doing nothing and misbehaving sometimes seem to match John Cooks world so well, a shame I can not read anymore what they said.

Nothing else than being lazy and doing nothing is shown in the documentary style narrative feature film “Slow Summer” by John Cook. No shaky “let’s make it docu style” 90ies look, but a calm observing camera shooting from a tripod mostly  covering scenes like real life, observing improvised conversations, people sleeping, driving, having a coffee.

Shot on Super 8 colour film, filmed of the screen for montage, than editing of the s8 footage and blow up to 35mm black and white it has been running on many international festivals such as Cannes and is considered a Austrian Classic today.

Austrian film funding bodies and TV stations had their problems in understanding the beauty of seemingly filming your own friends whilst doing nothing in a long summer.

“I think I can not finish the Ilse film without Ilse.” John Cook, director and protagonist at the same time, figures in the last third of the movie, having shown us what appears to be his own life and making us witness the creation process of his own film,  filming his own ADR dubbing process on a common tape recorder with a mike resting on a pillow.

Women, lost, full of lament for their absence, left and cause of all pain. – Women, rich of life, summery, beautiful, full of joy and cause of all pleasure.

Driving in a car, working – or better the discussions why working is not possible, coffees and beers in Vienna, trips and lazy days.

The larmoyanze of the Vienna 70ies bohème can not really be translated with the self-pitty of 30something artists in this time. Being a French word it implicates for me all I see in this movie: Summer, flowers, girls, amazing cars, slow-lazy dripping heat. Cool shade, pain, art, space and freedom to create in.

Langsamer Sommer – Slow summer.

You wanna watch it again in a warm summer night on a grass field in a 16mm projection with a drink and some friends around.

But, more importantly, you want to make films. Now. More. More than before. More than ever. It seems so easy. It is so easy.

some links:

“Relaxation infuses the filmmaking of John Cook’s Slow Summer ” at Berlinale 2009 slow-summer

A German link: “Der Modefotograf John (John Cook)ist von seiner Freundin verlassen worden und will den mit ihr begonnenen Film mit Freunden aus der Wiener Bohème zu Ende bringen. Doch zwischen dieses Vorhaben driften das Leben, die Arbeit, die Musik. Ein langsamer Sommer in der Stadt mit Ausflügen aufs Land, Affären, Beziehungen, Freundschaften, Neben- und Hauptsachen, deren Gewichtungen sich verschieben” – The fashion photograpoher John Cook has been left by his girlfriend and wants to finish the film started with her now with his friends  from the Vienna Bohème. This plan is challenged by life, work and music passing by. A slow summer in the city with trips to the country site, affaires, relationships, friendhips. Main- and side issues, whos importance is drifting.” Read more at Forum des jungen Films Berlin.

Last not least I found this one here: “And now it is ready for international discovery thanks to a DVD release with optional English subtitles by the Austrian Filmmuseum” – on this page you can find a trailer as well.

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3 thoughts on ““I am not in love with you and you are not in love with me and we will not fall in love with each other.”

  1. Pingback: Kinoschlaf « sanne kurz - cinematography

  2. I am really into realism in cinema. Being Scottish and liking things Scottish; and the fact that the only good Scottish movies (directed by Scots) are of this ilk.
    The Rat Catcher, by Lynne Ramsey is an excellent example; so to is the Bill Douglas trilogy.
    They take their time, but wander through the quotidian lives of “normal” folk.
    The dialogue can be sparse, but that serves to heighten the other senses, especially noticing the visual world in which they live.
    Not always happy ever after, and so not much liked in Hollywood. But definitely worth a wee look: see.

  3. Hey Thim,
    finally got going and been following your hints and was watching.
    I only ever had been in Edinburgh, but still could feel what y had been describing…
    Thx for the tips! – I like to see movies I don’t know yet.

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