From inception to decay, life begins with cellular fusion, and is marked by increasingly larger movements which range from the caress of another’s skin to the crushing of another’s skull. They grow and vary and surprise, until the final reverberation of the last nerves and valves.
After death we embalm:
We witness an animated corpse which reminds us of what once was.
After embalmment we view:
We take one last look to try create a visual for future recollection.
After viewing we proceed:
We carry the corpse, in horizontal motion, through the streets, as the public watches its final movements.
After procession we bury:
The direction of movement shifts 90 degrees and brings it to its terminal stop — permanent immobility.
After burial there is decay:
Slow disintegration into formlessness until it eventually becomes one with and indecipherable from the mineral, vegetable, and cultural material from which it came.
On this ground we build and rebuild.
Like all human lives always have and always will be, cinema is finally dead.
We have seen its embalmed corpse. We have seen it paraded through the streets. We have watched it change directions, and become immobile.
As it decays we must plan our new course of action.
We can choose to analyse and speculate on cause of death: autopsy as data gathering or preventative measure.
We can choose to rebuild in its image. A statue with the hope of reanimation. A cryogenic body waiting for a future that doesn’t want it.
Or we can build anew, learning from what was while proposing new possibilities.
When we leave the dark palaces of dead gods, we look at the outside world to provide models, to the culture to suggest potential forms.
We are that world and we are that culture.
Culture is an endless cigarette. We scatter the ashes into the wind and the ebbing waves. Its granules will get into our eyes and irritate and blind. We will breathe them in and spores will grow in our lungs. When the puss and the phlegm is expunged onto the ground, where it can mix with the rising gasses of the rotting corpses below the ground, we will have the fertile soil on which we can build new forms.
These forms, too, can grow, and move, and surprise, until they are no longer useful and can be put into the ground from which they came.
We all move in the same direction, toward or away from the light. It is in the variations between light and shadow that we live, we learn, we communicate, and, like cinema, like everything, we will finally die...