Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Time in Time Code

While watching Time Code, I noticed its relevance to Wark's discussion of time.

Thinking of the camera as composing its own time, Time Code can then be a presentation of four times, the time of each character. At the beginning of the film, the times seem to run parallel to one another since the audience does not have enough information to connect the characters. The times intersect when speak across vectors via phone or vectors follow them into the same space. In particular, Wark's discussion of the moment of danger applies nicely to the earthquake sequences, "Every now and then there is an event which interrupts all such discrete and parallel times, cutting across them and marking them all with the image of a moment of danger" (265)

The earthquakes are the only events to occur in all times at once. Each time it pauses the narrative as characters check to make sure that they are unharmed before they continue forwarding the plot. We are pulled from the individual frame of focus to watch all the frames as a collective: "Local and communal rhythms suddenly appear as connected to global forces and relations." (266)

Additionally, the format of the film also allows the time of the film and the time of the audience to intersect. Shot in real-time as four continuous shots, there has been no editing to the visual. Although this could have been shot cutting from character to character and elapsing time to quicken the pace, this format removes the viewer from cinematic time and into the time of the viewer. Each character experiences every moment of the film, and we the audience also experience each moment as well.

There was an odd moment during the screening in which our actions as an audience intersected with events on screen. During the directors soliloquy about her avant garde film, a few people at the screening snickered. This was followed by Alex snickering on screen and then breaking out into full laughter. A good portion of the audience followed Alex's example. The real-time shooting of the film feel part of our world. Instead of feeling mediated through the screen, it was as if both Alex and the director were present in the room.

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