Extracts from some of the Early Reviews: Published in the programmes from June 1992 - June 1993. Dates refer to the date of the programme the review was published in. The first batch of reviews were attributed to 'Captain Pat Porteus' aka Duncan Reekie (until cJuly 1992).
4-6-92 (the last Exploding Cinema event at Las Casas): ñOne of the highlights of our last show was 'The Diary' by Yugoslavian filmmaker Zoran Velijkovic. Unfortunately because of his hurried departure from his war torn homeland, he only managed to take this one VHS copy of the film with him... ...sheer visual delight.î
18-6-92: ñVivienne Dick's Super 8 'home movie' 'Let Me Tell You a Story' shot with sync sound was a pleasure to watch. Featuring a haphazard cast of family and friends it had the depth directness and magic of Super 8 that video unfortunately lacks.î
2-7-92: ñThat Stage, by Steven Houston, an Australian filmmaker, was a complex multi layered examination of communication and information dissemination in our ever more complex modern world. Using a cinema verite style we were invited into the private world of a series of individuals, while the multi layered soundtrack conveyed a variety of information, telephone conversations, answering machines, internal monologues vied with each other to communicate some sort of 'essence' of the individuals view. Fascinating...î Houston was the founding member of Exploding Cinema but showed only one film.
16-7-92: ñ'Seven Deadly Sins' a video documentary by Ellie Jefferies about the godfather of the underground himself William S. Burroughs was fascinating. Shot mainly at a private view of Burrough's work at the October Gallery, here in London.î ñMarc Conway's Super 8 film called 'Mantis Part 1' in our last programme should in fact have been called 'Blood and Money'. Featuring footage shot at the anti poll tax riots in Trafalgar Square in 1990.î
ñSuzanne Currid's 'Up Your Arse' a brash hand held camera probe into the torrid shenanigans of the Gay Pride festival at Brockwell Park was both hilarious and revealing.î
30-7-92: ñ'Peregrine by Karen Frazer shot on 16mm while at Farnham School of Art was a highly accomplished slick piece of film making...î
'Paddy Payne', aka Donal Ruane, seems to have taken over the reviewing at around this time. To cJune 1993.
13-8-92: ñThe evening kicked off with Bruised Fruits 234 Dog a searing slice of life docu-drama set amongst the Bohemian cafe society of London's Soho. Stuart Renfrew's 'Jack the Rubber' took an affectionate look at rubber clothing and those seduced by its skin tight charms.î
27-8-92: ñAndre Stitt's 'Kincora' took the history of child abuse at the Kincora Boys Home and cut it down to a moment of degradation: a child is woken and bribed with sweets. This image repeated endlessly became a waking nightmare in the auditorium. Oh no its happening again... A powerful work. Paul Tarrago's 'Requiem for an Ice Baby' shot on Super-8 was a highly individual piece featuring a wind-up baby doll... The baby dolls head is encased in a block of melting ice and the baby's eye view of the world through melting ice in truly inspired.î
10-9-92: ñ'Mash' by Asif Karadia explored cultural identity and alienation in the life of a young Asian student. Loose acting and tight dialogue held the drama in focus, and the writing was sharp driving the whole thing to an ambiguous, open ending...î
24-9-92: ñ'Let's Go To the Beach', the latest performance work by Jenny Marr and Cris Popp took the audience on an all too familiar odessey to the desolate shores of the family holiday where children whine, dogs bite, and parents devolve into twitching neurotics...î
8-10-92: ñGeorge Barber's scratch video, made in the piratical eighties, deconstructed and reconstructed pulp Hollywood features into a subversive montage of repetition and spectacle. Turning incidental dialogue and car door slamming into a visual song of terror and hesitation...î
13-2-93: A collectively run cafe in Southampton called 'The Flying Teapot' invited the Exploding to do a show in February 1993. The following report on this gig was included in the next show's programme: ñFor THE EXPLODING CINEMA on the 13th February ' Loveî was in the air. We had breath taking Standard 8's by Paul Tarrago and Anthony Kopieki and the world famous 'I Love You' performance by Duncan Reekie... One of the many highlights of the night was Donal Ruane's 'I am your Musical Lass', a searing indictment of the side-effects of alcohol on the North of England and another memorable film was Duncan Reekie's self proclaimed favourite: 'SLAVE RIDE', certainly a film for any discerning Masochist. But without doubt the film that really stole the show was a nameless Super 8 shot on Brighton Beach, starring William and with alive sound track improvised by Mungo, a truly unexpected and unscheduled delight.î (IP 20-3-93 p14)
20-3-93: This was the show at which Victoria Kirkwood's 'Dead Dog' film was first shown. This was considered a classic of the no budget genre (MB1 p105). Five of the movies listed for this first show at the Jugglers are on Super 8 film with just one video.
17-4-93: ñEven technical hitches can sometimes be outdone by the resourceful talents of our more lively filmmakers. Such was the case at the last Exploding Cinema when Andrew Copeman stepped into the breach and gave a powerful impromptu performance of the voice-over of his film Just Harry.î
1-5-93: ñWith 'Dead Dog Film', Victoria Kirkwood plumbed to the depths, 'Sue 86' went one stage further and dropped out the other side. From a fuzzy superimposition of a stroll down the aisle, we gasped as marriage led to prostitution! Drug-taking! S & M! This B&W odyssey on S8mm dealt a laudable kick in the teeth to narrative sequentiality.î
26-6-93: ñ'Berlin Rickstrasse' was filmed in Berlin by Alan Dein on his first visit there in 1986. Dein's cheap Super 8 eye roams the city, beyond embarassment , often confrontational, observing the mundane, the pathetic and the strange. To the beat of obscure sub Kraftwerk '80's technopop a nun rumbles along in an electric wheelchair, a drunk is arrested, two small boys take turns at shoving each other, a riot cop adjusts his helmet strap. Dein transforms a documentary into a personal consciousness, an eye that smiles.î
The reviewing is now taken over for a short period by Jennet Thomas
19-3-94: ñAshleys King's 'Life of Brian' b/w Super 8... He shot time lapse Super 8 of a snail placed (with obvious artificiality) on a large daisy. It thrashed round and round about 5 times (our time 1 min) (it's time half an hour?) teetering near the edge and then it fell...î [hand lettered... by Jennet?].
2-4-94: ñWith I'm so Sorry' Jennet (Thomas) demonstrates that what takes Industrial Light and Magic Inc. millions of dollars of shooting and re-shooting to achieve , can be done simply by means of a lense cap sellotaped to a piece of string...î