FILM EXERCISE # 4 (1944)
aka Fourth Film
Article 5270 by Dave Sindelar
Directed by John Whitney Sr. and James Whitney
What it is: Experimental film
Shapes move around while sound effects play.
During the mid-forties, John Whitney Sr. and his son, James Whitney made five film exercises numbered one through five. For some reason, IMDB sees fit to list these five movies as only three; the second and third movies are combined, as are the fourth and fifth. I don’t know if this reflects how they were first shown; all I know is that though I could find the fourth movie, I’ve not been able to locate the fifth. However, since the Walt Lee guide only specifies the fourth, that’s all I need for my review.
Once again, the fantastic content is the non-realistic nature of a movie featuring abstract images, though the sound effects on the soundtrack do sound like ones you’d expect from science fiction movies of the fifties. However, watching abstract images move around to sound effects isn’t really all that exciting, and though the film runs close to seven minutes, it simply doesn’t do enough with the idea to hold the attention for that length. In short, this one is rather dull. I’ll probably be watching other movies from these film-makers, but I hope they’re more engaging. And, given that the title of one of their movies is CELERY STALKS AT MIDNIGHT, I assume that somewhere in their hearts lies a sense of humor.