War Songs

Rental Format(s): 16mm film

Poems: Paul Schmidt; Music: Mark Bennett, performed by the Buffalo New Music Ensemble; Narration: Paul Schmidt.

Paul Schmidt sent me a set of five poems from a series titled "War Songs." Paul is both brilliant and sarcastic in his treatment of the seduction of war. Mark Bennett's score is also provocative, dreamy, and waltzlike. The composite is a set of songs cast as melodeclamation; i.e., music in tandem with a narrated text. My contribution is a superimposition of war scenes underlined with what I call a "Gabriel" image: a young and beautiful soldier, a personification of the good warrior, the protector of all. The image of his persona is felt throughout - sometimes active and aggressive, sometimes asleep, sometimes beckoning. The film employs images from the Vietnam War and the Second World War. The collected images of marching soldiers, rolling tanks, explosions, et al. reveal, in passing, our dear Gabriel.

Rental Fees

16mm film $50.00  

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