- Betzy Bromberg |
- 1996 |
- 59 minutes |
- COLOR |
Rental Format(s): 16mm
An opus to the evolution of civilization.
-Kevin Thomas, Los Angeles Times
"Divinity Gratis... explores time and space, starting at the beginning of the world, with molten rock and water in sequences that are exquisite in their sensuousness. Bromberg's ability to meld ideas and images is perhaps best exemplified in this work, which is truly breathtaking in its conceptual sweep. One line seems to unify the film - a voice repeats on the soundtrack, "A girl, blind from birth, saw the flash." The flash references an atomic blast, and thus links the film's beginning section, which is all about origins, and the film's suggestion of apocalypse, death and the infinite sweep of time."
- Holly Willis, LA Weekly
"An hour long and seven years in the making, Divinity Gratis locates personal experience and subjective vision in a history of the human species, culminating the technological revolutions that dominate the last years of the millennium. References to the atomic bomb and the moon landing, often incongruous or ironic, form a grid on which movement up from primeval elements through the appearance of animals and buildings to the modern city and the worlds of contemporary science and religion, culminating in a more lyrical section in which a young woman - Bromberg herself - is introduced into a condensed recapitulation of the whole film. Unconstrainedly eclectic and ranging freely among biological close-ups, museum dioramas, Gothic cathedrals, workers in the Los Angeles sex industries, and the Trinity Site on the White Sands Missile Range, where the first atomic bomb was tested, the imagery is almost all made over into the filmmaker's visual idiolect, where color, texture, and camera movement provide for a sensual improvisatory montage..."
- David James (2005)
From The Most Typical Avant-Garde - History and Geography of Minor Cinemas in Los Angeles
Selective Exhibition: Edinburgh Film Festival, 1996; Sundance Film Festival, 1997; Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, 1998; Museum of Modern Art, NY, 1998.