13Dec2016 Contexture Study “Alice”

We watched a film named ‘Alice’ which was filmed  in 1988 by Jan Svankmajer.

Jan Švankmajer ,who is born at 4 September 1934, is a Czech filmmaker and artist whose work spans several media. He is a self-labeled surrealist known for his animations and features, which have greatly influenced other artists such as Terry Gilliam, the Brothers Quay, and many others.

Jan Švankmajer is a Czech animator and filmmaker born in Prague. An early influence on his later artistic development was a puppet theatre he was given for Christmas as a child. He studied at the College of Applied Arts in Prague and later in the Department of Puppetry at the Prague Academy of Performing Arts. He contributed to Emil Radok’s film Doktor Faust in 1958 and then began working for Prague’s Semafor Theatre where he founded the Theatre of Masks. He then moved on to the Laterna Magika multimedia theatre, where he renewed his association with Radok. This theatrical experience is reflected in Švankmajer’s first film The Last Trick, which was released in 1964. Under the influence of theoretician Vratislav Effenberger Švankmajer moved from the mannerism of his early work to classic surrealism, first manifested in his film The Garden (1968), and joined the Czechoslovakian Surrealist Group.

(https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jan_Švankmajer#Further_reading)

Alice is a 1987 dark fantasy film written and directed by Jan Švankmajer. Its original Czech title is Něco z Alenky, which means “Something from Alice”. It is a loose adaptation of Lewis Carroll’s first Alice book, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland (1865), about a girl who follows a white rabbit into a bizarre fantasy land. Alice is played by Kristýna Kohoutová. The film combines live action with stop motion animation, and is distinguished by its dark and uncompromising production design.

After more than two decades as a prolific director of short films, Alice became Švankmajer’s first venture into feature-length filmmaking. The director had been disappointed by other adaptations of Carroll’s book, which interpret it as a fairy tale. His aim was instead to make the story play out like an amoral dream. The film won the feature film award at the 1989 Annecy International Animated Film Festival.

(https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alice_(1988_film))

An excellent introduction to his work is Jan Svankmajer’s Alice , a wonderfully creepy take on Alice in Wonderland, in which Alice is played by a real girl who enters a typical decaying Svankmeyer world. When Alice shrinks, the girl is played by an antique doll. The white rabbit is a stuffed real rabbit, who stores his watch in a hole in his chest, which is always leaking saw dust. The film diverges quite a bit from the story, although most of the elements are there. This is definitely not for small chil dren, unless you want them sleeping with you for a few nights after.

(http://www.awn.com/heaven_and_hell/svank/svank2.htm)

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