Ben Rivers’s Now, at Last! is screening online at Light Industry April 24 – April 30, 2020
Listen to a conversation between filmmakers Ben Rivers and Laida Lertxund. Link here >>
For one week, Light Industry will be streaming Now, at Last! on its Vimeo channel. The screening and discussion are free and more accessible at a time when so many face financial uncertainty. Light Industry are a W.A.G.E.-certified organization, and are committed to compensating artists for their work. Please consider subscribing to Light Industry’s Patreon (starting at $2/month), making a one-time donation through PayPal Giving Fund, or purchasing one of their benefit editions.
The analysis of animal locomotion was one of cinema’s originary moments, a matter of both scientific inquiry and aesthetic fascination. Eadweard Muybridge captured the activities of horses, humans, and other beasts through mechanical interventions in the late nineteenth century, isolating their movements to illustrate that which would otherwise elude our vision. More recently, Ben Rivers has achieved a related, if inverse, effect, allowing the viewer to enter, via film, the time-scale of another species. Now, at Last! is his appropriately unhurried 16mm portrait of a Costa Rican sloth’s pendulous existence. Last year, Rivers called this austere nature study a political work, adding, “I live in London, I’m busy a lot of the time, and it’s really noticeable when you go into nature and time changes. Everyone notices it, and it feels good. I like it when cinema can do this, take you into a different state if you allow it to. Some people misunderstood the film as a joke about ‘slow cinema’—actually, I wasn’t thinking about that at all…I didn’t film one frame of anything else—just this beautiful animal.”
Last week, filmmaker Laida Lertxundi emailed us from Spain with the idea of screening Now, at Last! online, to mark a moment in which our own species has undergone a dramatic shift in tempo. “In my mind something about it became threaded with our current condition of confinement,” she wrote us, appending the following piece of writing, composed in response. – Ed Halter