Arts documentary series.
|Omnibus: Fear and Loathing in Gonzovision Movie(DivX)||Resolution: 640x480 px||Total Size: 350 Mb|
|Omnibus: Fear and Loathing in Gonzovision Movie(iPod)||Resolution: 480x368 px||Total Size: 183 Mb||
We have taken some photos of "Omnibus: Fear and Loathing in Gonzovision". They represent actual movie quality.
For a good while now, there have been persistant fears in Britain about boththe declining quality, and quantity, of arts-based programmes on television.This is undoubtedly true (note the South Bank Show's humiliatingratings-chasing decline), and OMNIBUS itself is hardly the force it was acouple of decades ago (a recent edition concerned British sitcoms, like theyaren't dissected every two minutes in this culture), although it can stillspring surprises, like the Jean Renoir double-programme about five yearsago. Last night I saw an edition called 'Gilbert and Sullivan: InstantMerriment', which was one such treat.It wasn't specifically about the duo per se, but a Gilbert and Sullivanobsessive and businessman, Ian Smith, who, sensing a decline in G&Sappreciation since the disbanding of the D'Oyly Carte Opera Company in 1982(whose raison d'etre was to stage specifically the Savoy Operas), tried torevivify interest by setting up a G&S International Festival, in 1997, inthe US and Britain.The brilliance of the programme was the way it set up and moved from thebuzz and elation of putting on the festival, the sight (and sound) ofdifferent American amateur companies performing these sublime works, ordevotees singing choruses on buses to the bewilderment of natives, orpretentious, prolix Anglophiles marvelling at English 'refinement', to themelancholy reality of lack of interest, poor ticket sales, gradual (thoughdenied) disillusionment.There is little attempt to explain why G&S could be relevant today - mostpeople talk about their jolly good fun, or, at best, 'gentle satire'. ButG&S are savage: the music makes use of sophisticated, subversive pastiche,parody and irony; while Gilbert's lyrics can be brutal, bitter, nasty,cruel, mocking, and laceratingly satiric behind the polished verse. Thereis little sympathy with authority, repression, hypocrisy, double-talk,stereotypes or the cult of mother-love. As well as being a brilliant, furious attack on the British establishment,The Mikado, for example, is the first post-colonial critique, perceptivelynoting the repressive systems of signification behind British (and Western)Orientalism. Why do you think Mike Leigh is making a film about them? Onepioneering producer has sensed this, and we see some of her intriguingmodern-dress versions of G&S, set in Northern mills etc., which politiciseG&S to the horror of old school connoisseurs.It is these fuddy-duddy relics who are responsible for G&S's decline. Forthem, the Savoy Operas are a cosy, unchanged, untroubled Victorian idyll;their biggest proponents seem to be clergymen, businessmen, and sillyAmericans. Too many old fogeys reminisce Rowley Birkin, QC-style about thedear things, and you feel, to your horror, that you're turning into yourgrandparents because you adore G&S. One similarly-minded critic bemoansthis 'ossified' treatment, suggesting an injection of new blood with the useof comedians such as Stephen Fry or Harry Enfield. An intriguing idea (whystop there - what about a SOUTH PARK Mikado?), but one thing is for sure:Gilbert would have poured moulten scorn on the timid little minds seeking tomake respectable his name.