SLOWLY APPROACHING DARKNESS
Over at Cinemad, Nick Russell interviews filmmaker Betzy Bromberg, who is also the Director of the Film/Video Program at CalArts. Among other things Russell talks with her about her latest film, A Darkness Swallowed, which took six years to make. He describes the film as “an astrological exploration of the mind and what we call ‘memor’” as we gradually experience a slow fall, into a funnel. Using primarily close-up imagery that seems abstract at first, Bromberg creates an overall experience of distorted enclosure that lasts for days.”
Cinemad: Do you normally give yourself plenty of time without the constraints?
Bromberg: Yea! I like to finish work because you don’t get to the next place until you complete something. But honestly, when I was younger I wanted to make films faster. I think now about “God, wouldn’t it be great to be able to knock out films every two years?” to keep people present with your work. But honestly, it’s really about the process. It you want to make long films, that process takes longer. I’ve never pressured myself that way. I’ve never rushed a film out to make a screening or a deadline. It takes as long as it takes, as long as you can stay with that process.
Cinemad: Sometimes certain filmmakers will base the speed of the process based on a deadline or a grant.
Bromberg: Some people need that motivation. I see that in students too. A deadline is a great thing because it motivates them to get it done. I believe that staying on something for a long period of time actually deepens the experience of making it.
Cinemad: There’s some sort of great adrenaline rush to watch the visuals rush in when you’re making a film.
Bromberg: It’s such a great process. It’s wonderful to have this thing in your mind working all the time. Even when you’re not working on the film. You know, driving, for instance and you’re still thinking about it. I like being in that process.