The Narrative Films of Mark Rappaport

Series Site

"While often recognized for pioneering the video essay in the 1990s, the scope of Mark Rapport’s film and video work is significantly more wide-ranging and amorphous than any critical superlative could ever let on. With a 40+ year long career that includes a feature length period musical, more than a dozen short-form video essays, an autobiographical TV special, and a jumbled up blue movie – Rapport’s oeuvre can often feel as hard to define as the plot of one of his films.

"This September and October catch up on a sampling of his eclectic output – his complete narrative features along with a few key narrative shorts. Starting in 1970s New York alongside such luminaries of the American underground cinema like Yvonne Rainer and Jonas Mekas, Rappaport quickly developed his voice through a string of micro-budget features shot primarily within the confines of his Soho loft. Conjuring an exhilarating body of work that can feel equal parts familiar and belonging to a world of its own, these films feature plots that turn hollywood cliche into alienating mysteries; corny dialogue loaded with unexpected emotional and philosophical weight; staid blocking reminiscent of classical painting; and unreliable voice-over narrators speaking in droll monotones. Look forward to part 2 of the series, featuring THE SCENIC ROUTE, IMPOSTERS, and CHAIN LETTERS, coming this October."