Caligari's Cure and Added Lessons
- Tom Palazzolo |
- 1982-1991 |
- 145 minutes
This DVD inlcudes the only two narrative films Tom Palazzolo ever made - Caligari's Cure (1982) and Added Lessons (1991). Both experimental in nature, loosely autobiographical and draw on the talents of local, Chicago, performance artists.
Caligari's Cure (1982, 70min, Color, Sound)
My work has always depended on outside sources, whether it's an artwork from another period or people, events, and places from my own past or present. I use this material as a springboard.
Both as a student and a teacher I have spent most of my adult life in an art environment. This present work combines formative memories of Catholic school with the other half of my life - the museum and school of the Art Institute of Chicago. I have always wanted to do a remake of Robert Wiene's The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari, both because the film is very interesting to me in a psychological sense and to reflect my interest in art and film history.
"CALIGARI'S CURE is Tom Palazzolo's first fictional narrative film and also his first feature .... The film is a comic fantasy that presents the filmmaker's memories ... as reenacted by a cast of performance artists and friends in wildly colored, distorted sets and costumes. Palazzolo's style is playful and irreverent, incorporating and openly acknowledging a wide range of influences from cinema, art history, and contemporary American art. The subjectively distorted, expressionist sets of the original German film, for instance, have been transformed into a junky, cartoon-like, and distinctively American version that reflects Palazzolo's involvement with contemporary painting as well as with film history." - Callie Angell, New American Filmmakers Series, Whitney Museum of American Art, NY
This title is also available for loan on 16mm from Canyon Cinema. See Caligari's Cure film page.
Added Lessons (1991, 75min, Color, Sound)
ADDED LESSONS, the sequel to Palazzolo's 1982 semi-autobiographical film, CALIGARI'S CURE, continues his self-expressionistic exploration of the psyche of his alter-ego, Francis, now a young man adrift in a hallucinatory dreamscape of painted sets. Structured as a deconstruction of the early surrealistic films of the 1920s, the film shows Francis's struggle to satisfy the contradictory demands of mother, society and his own fantasy life. The film features Chicago performance artists Carmella Rago, Jim Grigsby, Lynn Book, Liam Hayes, Jack Heilbig and many others.
"There is some wry humor in ADDED LESSONS about the place of art in urban society. There is also an interesting examination of the quest for a spiritual marriage in a blatantly carnal world. ... Bernie Beckman's inventive sets set the proper mood." - Chicago Sun-Times
"Palazzolo assaults the barriers of preoccupation, complacency, common sense and good taste." - Chicago Magazine