The Postmodernism in the Macedonian Film – Part I

/, Gallery, Blesok no. 27/The Postmodernism in the Macedonian Film – Part I

The Postmodernism in the Macedonian Film – Part I


#13 The multi-genre’s existence of the Macedonian postmodern film is realized through the means of the hybridization, with the applying of the rule of the combining the genres that are disparate as much as possible. Brian MacHale, for example, considers the detective genre as a pure presenter of the Modernism, because it postulates cognitive and epistemological questions (who?), and the genre of science fiction as a pure Postmodern presenter, because it postulates ontological questions (what?). But, exactly Aleksandar Stankovski with his Maklabas shows that there are no limits that art imagination couldn’t overcome, and he includes detective story together with the science-fiction one. As even more, he links the pop-art fascination with the everyday’s life with hallucinant oneirism of the Castaneda-type, along with the classical SF story of the alien invasion (The Green Crystal) and the weird creature (Maklabas) of the Mary Shellie’s kind. In Light Gray, there is a realized omnibus, in which the stories are so disparate, signed by the different authors and with the disparate genres each: the hyper-urban drama with the magical realism, horror with western techniques, urban drama with the musical and comedy. The goal of the hybridization is to emphasize the complexity and the richness, with the intention to create a different kind of sensibility. That is because of the feeling that the simple harmony is false, or simply – not interesting. The hybridization is made upon the principles of the bricollage, defined by Clod Levi-Stross. A situation that, accordingly of the contexts and the specific need and different combinations, one uses different theory “tools” from the “toolbox”. The bricollage understands one thing – what Liotar says – to move among more different discourse genres without making a synthesis, but always according the “rules of the game” of every separate discourse genre (see Liotar, 1989:71,79). Goodbye to 20th Century is built in that manner. Its authors, and this is verifiable, said that every sequence of the film is built by the pattern of some widely known film example. Aleksandar Stankovski uses his actors in the same way in Maklabas. He uses his friends as “naturschiks” (common non-professional actors), and they play different roles in the film, and also he uses inserts of his video arts and his paintings and comics, photos, script fragments, etc.


#14 All this gives the most significant characteristic of the postmodern film by which it separates itself from the other types of films: its accented and emphasized constructivity, non-mimetic fashion and anti-illusionism. So, the main arguments of the postmodern film are: the intentional break of the action & story logic, the “alienated” actors’ performance and the anti-psychologism in the building of the characters. Both in the Light Gray and in the Goodbye to the 20th Century actors play their characters without the minimum of the personal verity and even in one sequence of the film they make so much of a character changes and overturns of their characters that are in full opposite with the narrative logic of the film. They are fully aware of the existence of the audience and of the reception’s possibilities for change, and with that, aware of their manipulative powers. The actors in Angels on a Dump are maybe closest to that our obscure understanding of the postmodernism. They stand – all the time – on the line between the mimetic verity and the emphasized fictionality. They (like) perform realistically, and actually are given as a “characters”. The strategy of the emphasized constructivism is also the relation upon the reality itself. The postmodern film strongly shows that it is art indeed, but also it shows in the same way that all of the other art and non-art practices are constructed, made, artificial. Aleksandar Stankovski in Maklabas, for example, for his chronotops (the City Museum) and for the diegesis (the political opposition protests), and also for some of the characters – uses real places and buildings, happenings and people, and by that he provokes the “ontological scandal” (MacHale). With that, he shows the constructive principle of the film, but placing it within the film itself, within the false/unreal context, shows how “thin” is our reality in its non-problematized existence. The similar play can be noted in the Angels on a Dump, where the actors play characters they are on the edge between the fictive and the real in the reality itself – especially in accordance with their private and public personality: clowns, actors, public and political figures…


#15 The fragmentarity is one of the canonic forms of the postmodernism. Probably, it emanates from the claim that “the modern man has a fragmentary and incomplete way of understanding and viewpoints on the world. (…) The world is only receipted – and not in any other way but – fragmentarily” (Virilio, 1989:55,59). Or, as Bodriar defines the postmodern: “All that’s left, are pieces. The play with the pieces – that’s the Postmodern” (Bodriar, at Kellner, 1996:182). With those pieces plays the Macedonian film also – with fragments of the horror, western, mystery, urban fairytale, urban grotesque (Light Gray), the fragments of the “real” life and the urban pop-icons of Skopje, than the thriller, science fiction, fantasy (Maklabas), the fragments from the comics, fairy tales, myths and legends, quiz shows, actual or old legendary and commercial film world hits (Goodbye to the 20th Century). The action of these films is fragmentary, with leaps, with the inoculated sequences, often in collision with the common sense.

Translated by: Petar Volnarovski

2018-08-21T17:23:37+00:00 August 1st, 2002|Categories: Reviews, Gallery, Blesok no. 27|0 Comments