Hymn Video Sine Vol. 1, # 1 and 2

These came out over two years ago, but I just picked them up when I was in Vancouver this summer. Running about thirty minutes each on recycled VHS, collecting sketchy shorts from resourceful young ‘uns, this is a zine in spirit as well as in name. Several of the shorts are EXTREMELY goofy–like the endearing Super 8 Girl & Wolf and Sick Day on # 1, or the mannered fake-film farce Fish is for France on # 2. Several others look like exercises from someone’s animation class–cute but slight. The first one’s real selling point is The Art of Diving, an unusually unsentimental look at this revered pastime; the desperate edge of the interviewees is played for black comedy (“So things like severed heads don’t disturb you?” “Well who wants a head? It’s a severed head right, you throw it in the garbage.”) Number two offers the smaller pleasures of Weeping Horse Crying Tear and the movie-punch rhythm collage Untitled, followed by a really morbid video about an unhappy dog puking. I can take or leave the grrrl pretending to fly and the repressed light comedy about people in suits, but this is a noble analog incursion for internet-weary tubeheads. (Jonathan Culp)

VHS, Compilation, videohymn@hotmail.com

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