IN THE SHADOW OF THE SUN (Derek Jarman, GB 1972/81)
Super 8, blown up to 16mm
In the presence of James Mackay (producer)
IN THE SHADOW OF THE SUN (1972/81) is part of a series of films entitled "The Art of Mirrors", made in London between 1970 and 1974. Shot on Super 8 and silent, the films were a by-product of his work as a painter. For the premiere at the International Forum of Young Cinema in 1981, a 16mm print was made from the Super 8 footage, accompanied by the soundtrack of Throbbing Gristle.
"Unlike my feature films, these early films have no narrative plot. They are about developing a very personal visual language. This film is a film of fire, an English apocalypse that begins with a journey to the stone circle at Avebury near Stonehenge. From this beginning, the images develop with a dreamlike, repetitive quality. I find it difficult to write about this film because it is impossible to translate its images into prose; have you ever successfully told a dream to a friend? This is a film for the eyes and ears. "But at my back I hear ever the winged chariot of time hastening on, but before us lie deserts of wide eternity." (Andrew Marvell, 1650) Derek Jarman