Pamela Hutchinson ‘London Film Festival 2014: The Silent Review’

 

Silent London 2014 (extract)

 

A silent twist on film noir, Urschrift (Julia Dogra-Brazell, 2014) “revels in the generic clichés of the 40s police procedural thriller”. The title means “original” and for most of its running time, the screen is taken up by a blank film frame, sprocket holes on display, slightly out of focus in scratchy black-and-white. Flash cuts of street neon, typewriter keys, guns, casinos and a sinister figure in a doorway combine with a juddering, collage soundtrack to evoke detective thrillers, projecting a whole movie on to those empty frames. Its remarkable how much visual and aural information Dogra-Brazell packs in this way – it’s a jumpy mini-noir and inexplicably unsettling.