My first original piece for Cinephilia & Beyond (& my first paid writing gig since Omni Reboot), is called “Fixed Images of Eternity: Time, Perception, & Grief in Don’t Look Now,” about Nicholas Roeg’s 1973 nightmare of physics.
“If you bring forth what is within you, what you bring forth will save you. If you do not bring forth what is within you, what you do not bring forth will destroy you.”
—Gospel of Thomas
“The skill of police artists,” says Inspector Longhi to Baxter in Don’t Look Now, “is to make the living appear dead.” Remove the word “police” and the statement refers to the film itself—and by extension to all movies, all art. In this same scene, Baxter is sitting below a portrait of a man, also depicted sitting, in roughly the same posture as Baxter. To draw or paint a living subject—or capture them on film—is to turn the living into the dead. Conversely, the image created, if it outlasts the life of the subject as movies do, is a way of making the dead appear living.
The reason nothing is ever what it seems is that we have imposed a linearity to time that it does not have. The lake of the world only appears flat. Really the end and the beginning meet and overlap. As when we watch a movie, it is all a trick of our own perception that turns the fixed images of eternity into the all-immersive illusion of linear time, that makes the dead appear living. In the same way, a glimpse of eternity makes the living appear dead.
Don’t Look Now weaves together the supernatural, psychism, the psychology of grief and regret, spiritual longing, and the mysteries of perception, into a unified—if many-faceted—whole. It portrays the interconnectivity of all events, all lives, into a single tapestry of existence: the life of the soul that is the life of all souls. Don’t Look Now is a nightmare of metaphysics from start to finish, and its entire premise rests on recognizing an essential complicity between ourselves and the forces of the occult. The supernatural, both the demonic and the angelic, is seen not as acting on us, but through us.
The horror only enters into it as a consequence of our willed ignorance of this truth.
Full essay here.
And the first installment of an interview with Greg Moffit of Legalize Freedom on Prisoner of Infinity, in which I give an extensive overview of my ever-evolving view of the alien abduction/Ufo phenomenon, with a new element that will perhaps be surprising to some.
First aliens are aliens; then aliens are not aliens anymore; then, finally, aliens are aliens.
12 thoughts on “Fixed Images of Eternity: Don’t Look Now essay & Legalize Freedom interview”
Don’t look now has been on my list to see for years,looks like I’ll have to bump it up just cause I want to read this essay.I saw Walk about around 98 in an art house when a new film print was made.That movie messed with my head/heart big time,so I assume there is the same potential with Don’t look now .
Do you want something to mess with your head?
Well yes if it benefits me in a “spiritual” way.
I found Walk about to be a deeply moving but profoundly sad film because of it’s main concept of innocence or paradise lost.A big part of that loss is depicted by humanity’s separation from nature which our bodies are a direct component of.
Anyway I am not into movies that are disturbing for the sake of like the human centipede,I either want to be emotionally moved, intellectually challenged or aesthetically enriched.
I can’t think of the exact quote but it’s something about how giving people exactly want they want especially in art is crass and I would generally agree with that.
The essay and other pieces are superb. A great tribute to this great film. Thankyou Jasun.
Could you explain why you went by Jake and now you go by Jasun?
Is it a Saul to Paul type of thing?
LOL! Exactly that; except I was christened Jason (with O), and “Jake” became my mother’s pet-name for me, which she took from Hemingway’s Sun Also Rises, the name of a castrated war hero. Maybe you get why I decided to drop it around the time I turned 40 & met my wife….
I switched the O for a U a couple of years later, as a way of customizing & making it my own, stepping into my soul-ar nature, you might say.
And now finally I enjoy the name.
I found this little bit of info to be very insightful for some reason.
Totally understandable that you’d shed the nickname given the back story. To quote Dave O. from one of the podcasts, “cut your penis off, see how long your marriage lasts.”
Joking aside, the chapter in Seen and Not Seen about your brother is pretty moving. Very tragic stuff. I definitely went through a similar shock when my dad passed away 10 years ago, it’s as if I got bushwhacked, no warning. One day a vibrant human, the next day lifeless.
About your name change and variation or customization in regard to spelling it, I completely understand. Mine is a self manufactured name. The previous one had been bastardized for nearly my whole life.
Don’t Look Now; I need to look that up.