Watch: Manakamana Mergings, A Video by Kevin B. Lee
When I wrote about Manakamana last year, I noted that it’s a bit disorienting, more so than the “11 rides in a cable car” premise suggests:
The car can go up or down and its passengers can sit facing the direction they’re going or with their back toward it, affecting the camera’s placement opposite. Even before considering the number onboard, that’s four variables that make orientation — knowing what to anticipate in the background, which posts will be passed with a clang at what time, whether a village mid-way through the journey will be visible on the left or right, or at all — a constant battle.
Kevin B. Lee’s new video Manakamana Mergings offers some clarity. As he writes, “I was able to group together four sets of shots that seemed to be filmed in identical positions. This video takes those identically positioned shots and overlays them so as to make a direct comparison between their passengers.” The elegant layerings build to some fierce stroboscopic intercutting. For those trying to get oriented within the film, this is a good reference point.