The Mess we’re in


Mess is a nautical term, if it is not used referring to what’s in your room or in your head.

We have it in German as well, the Mess… nautical as well as for measuring – leading in the last case to such funny Wortschöpfungen as Mess-Meister – which would refer to a master of measurement rather than a master of the chaos, would this term exist.

Today, I would refer to my head, when using the word discussed above.

The word mess. Not the word Mess-Meister. I would call the different ghosts and fairies mess causing, lurking lazy in the corners of my brain. My brain is a German one, so it is very square and has corners. Four at it’s minst.

Let me make a German order of this fluffy flirring flurryness mess and start, topic by topic, a neat list.

With A to begin with as you do in neat lists and C to come to a quick end, deal with the three the most nagging thoughts and spare you of the to many discourses, distractions and pranks those pranksters in my mind have come up with lately.


Leads us back to the headline and the song, you find playing the link above.

Katharina gave it to me yesterday. She is working as online publisher of the Filmschoolfest. And she was the one, who chose to put the picture from my “Find the Award” post online next to my cinematographers introduction, along with the line “The mess we are in”.

Lucky I am not a camera assistant. I thought, when I saw and read this first. But that was before I met her. After I met her, we had the loveliest conversation about life and living and she gave me this glorious song by P.J. Harvey with Thom Yorke, that made her initially put the note under my picture. I listened, I love it. – If you want it as a Chrissie present, buy it here, but no Thom Yorke in this version… I would have never got this recording without this lovely  note by Katharina.


I almost forgot, this is a list…so better be efficient

The other day I was in a lecture Claire Denis held about her latest film 35 Shots of Rum. I loved the film, an homage to Ozu, and its unpretentious way of how he shows people and their every day lives. And those lives rustle, rattle and clatter like a train trudging swooshing sometimes smoothly, sometimes loudly cracking, when changing tracks.

Beautiful pictures by Agnes Godard as usually, Claire Denis took as on a journey through her films and her thoughts and somehow we spoke a about physicality and intrusion and heart transplants and migrants and her film The Intruder and last  not least L’Origine du Monde by Gustave Courbet.

I remembered the painting instantly, as well as the day, when I saw it for the first time. And I remembered the impact it had. I remembered it as this large lush greatness, maybe 6×3 meters staring down at me and I remembered me, standing underneath looking up to it in the Musée d’Orsay. You will see my memory tricked me.

The painting is sized 46×55 cm. 

The strangest thought standing there in the cinema with Claire Denis, was the memory of a very strong memory, I had, when I stood there in the d’Orsay for the first time. A strong visual memory of picture. A photograph with a young couple with a baby in a pusher, I had seen about a year before. Red and white stripes, the little pusher and happy, the couple.


Guided Tour (Siyur Mudrach) by Benjamin Freidenberg is a bit like a memory of an event, that was dominated by a memory and is remembered wrongly. And a bit like shifting reality, you are running after trying to catch it like a soap-bubble. And a bit like Vom Beobachten des Beobachters der Beobachter (On the Observing of the Observer of the Observers – A Novel in 24 Sentences) by Swiss writer Dürrenmatt or Max Frisch‘s Stiller starting with the words: “I am not Stiller.” And not only a little bit, but a large bit wonderful.

An empty Jerusalem we observe in this – as acclaimed German Newspaper “Die Welt” writes in their online editionDokumentation. Wondering after a while, why and how this film can be a Dokumentation, according to “Die Welt” and our own minds, if the couple, the film is documenting in front of their wardrobe, maybe even in their bedroom, if this couple is a couple the narrator sees only from time to time and from the far, peeking through his apartments door in to the hallway.

Is it the Uli Seidel style setup, that makes us want to believe this film and its reality so much? Or is it the fact, we always believe movies and believe in movies, when we love them, even though we know the blood is not real. We do want to believe in to people who let us look deep in to their souls. Or what they let us know might be their souls.

The fog faints.

We hear a story, and hear the honest narrator telling us,  it is not true. Only to follow this very same narrator in to the next Gespinnst of wonderfully woven silky storylines and fairy tales of real life.

A bit like in Bunuel’s The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie, where people wake up from a dream, which is a dream of people having a dream in a dream.

Thank you for this dream.

One thought on “The Mess we’re in

  1. Pingback: In The End They Will Stand Alone. « ⠁⠁⠁ I love light. I love air.

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