The Revelation Film festival is back again! Despite restrictions and pandemics, Revelation has worked hard to safely continue with their annual tradition, providing us with two festivals last year (an online festival, followed later in the year with their regular cinema festival once restrictions had eased). Now the 2021 edition is here, and we’ve got reviews of some features and documentaries worth checking out, from an intense separation drama to exposés on esoteric and boundary-pushing musicians.
The Killing of Two Lovers
Directed by Robert Machoian
Beginning in a startlingly dramatic way, this film cools down and heats up again gradually as it keeps you wondering how this young father of four is going to manage his crumbling marriage in a crumbling town. What makes it stand out from its super serious contemporaries is a sense of humour – the dad uses it to bond further with his kids, with comedian Mitch Hedberg being a recurring conversation topic. Mixing this humour throughout, this film amplifies its drama with incredible long takes of discussions and arguments. The story may come to a rigid conclusion, but everything before offers thought as to the immense pressure of trial separations.
Other, Like Me
Directed by Marcus Werner Hed, Dan Fox
Documenting the visual and musical exploits of enfant terribles Genesis P-Orridge, Cosey Fanni Tutti, Peter Christopherson, Chris Carter, and co., these British legends began their own experimental street performances and plays as COUM Transmissions, before venturing into the burgeoning industrial music with Throbbing Gristle. Although you can see how childish and rudimentary these works initially began as, this documentary gets into the details of the band’s gloomy British upbringing and how this helped shape them into a greater band, one that crafted this new genre across the pond.
Delia Derbyshire: The Myths and Legendary Tapes
Directed by Caroline Catz
Delia Derbyshire invites us into the life of one of the most brilliant and exciting electronic sound pioneers of the 1960s. Best known (to her chagrin) for her work at the BBC Radiophonic Workshop on the Doctor Who theme, she was little known or celebrated until a taped archive was posthumously discovered in 2001. This hybrid documentary uses stunning audiovisual work by artist Cosey Fanni Tutti (who also appears in Other, Like Me) reverently “created from/ inspired by” the tapes. Her story is dramatically brought to life by reenactments starring director Caroline Catz as Delia. Through a visually poetic cinematic style, Catz beautifully captures the astonishing but complicated work and private life of this groundbreaking composer.