On a recent evening in the 2nd Avenue Court House, home of the Anthology film archives, a crowd of about 50 people were treated to a double short presentation. Adrian Dannatt, a BBC television child prodigy turned art critic ("Just William" and Flash Art, respectively), delighted his audience with a concise and amusing 7 minute film. It opens with a headless long shot of him entering an apartment with a soft briefcase. Out of the briefcase comes a PC and on its screen appear the head titles of the movie in giant type, accompanied by mouse clicking noises. A voice-over starts narrating a mind bogglingly complicated plot. Accompanying the narration are interposed shots of the unfurnished apartment, Mr. Dannatt reading Variety and an art theory book on the toilet bowl and shots of "last year at Marienbad" on a television set covered with muslin. The monologue is recited with fast paced expressiveness, describing a plot with endless twists, which chronicles an L.A. gang lord through his rise to stardom, in endless battles with his former associates, modeling jobs and girlfriends. The effect of the subtle relation between the images and the story told is hilarious.
Dannatt transposes into film what he must have learned in art criticism, making something out of nothing.
(Sante Scardillo: Me, as a critic, -vs- Me, as an artist )