Fragments of Kubelka Is Longer Than Peter Kubelka’s Actual Fragments


At nearly four hours, this crash course in the life and work of experimental-cinema pioneer Peter Kubelka is roughly four times longer than Kubelka’s lifelong output. That is, if you measure him by finished films—Kubelka remains something more like a chatterbox Solomon endlessly ruminating and philosophizing about cinema, reality, and perception, and he may well be more famous for his expansive lectures (often including cooking and the manhandling of 35mm celluloid) than his filmography. Martina Kudlacek’s portrait pretty much lets Kubelka, now a merry, avuncular septuagenarian, run away with the show, but history eventually squeezes in, often in the form of Jonas Mekas’s 16mm diaries. Kubelka’s pioneering role in crafting the Anthology Film Archives’ “invisible cinema” screening room—inspired by the human womb, with the screen as the light coming in through the birth canal—is given pride of place, as is a live PBS cooking show (!) Kubelka conceived and performed in the ’70s. It may be all more Kubelka than you ever wanted, but buckle up: The screenings will be accompanied by Kubelka in person, and there’s no telling when they’ll end.