Clip from Meshes of the Afternoon  (1943)

PopGap #28: Meshes of the Afternoon (1943)

 
By dorrk, May 25th 2017

I don't often care for avant garde cinema in feature length films, but shorts are a different matter. Short films can work like poems, allowing filmmakers to focus narrowly on their ideas, hit a few pithy beats, and get out before their indulgences grow tiresome. Artist couple Maya Deren and Alexander Hammid contributed the landmark short Meshes of the Afternoon, a hypnotic, spiralling nightmare of sexual panic. Deren is a captivating figure, using her dance training to gracefully glide, prowl and swoon through a house that appears to have trapped her in a never-ending pursuit of release. Once you've seen Meshes of the Afternoon, its influence on later cinema becomes hard to miss. David Lynch's Mulholland Drive may feature the most obvious homage to Meshes' laconic paranoia, but echoes of its potent imagery and mesmerizing atmosphere can also be found in music videos and the animation of Terry Gilliam.

Meshes of the Afternoon was brought to my Potluck Film Fest by Flickcharter Mike Seaman, who can be found on Flickchart under the username Celldweller7. He ranks it on his chart at #443 / 2317 (81%), putting it at #4 on his chart of 108 short filmsMeshes of the Afternoon ranked on my Flickchart at #796 (79%), making it my 5th favorite out of 15 short films.

My Top 5 Short Films

Media Life Crisis recommendations!

Clip from Meshes of the Afternoon (1943)

Beware: Galleries may contain spoilers.
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-00-25
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-00-40
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-00-51
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-01-05
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-01-36
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-02-10
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-03-10
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-03-27
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-03-53
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-04-02
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-04-18
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-04-41
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-04-52
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-04-59
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-05-27
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-05-32
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-05-36
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-05-40
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-05-51
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-05-57
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-06-18
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-06-39
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-06-41
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-06-54
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-07-00
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-07-04
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-07-10
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-07-15
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-07-20
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-07-24
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-07-29
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-07-34
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-07-46
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-07-50
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-08-03
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-08-16
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-08-26
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-08-43
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-08-46
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-08-54
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-08-58
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-09-02
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-09-07
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-09-20
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-09-27
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-09-33
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-09-36
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-09-41
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-09-44
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-09-55
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-09-58
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-10-04
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-10-25
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-10-31
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-10-32
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-10-33
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-10-37
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-10-41
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-10-46
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-11-10
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-11-12
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-11-15
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-11-18
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-11-23
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-11-27
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-11-30
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-11-51
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-12-08
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-12-23
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-12-30
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-12-45
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-12-51
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-12-59
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-13-00
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-13-11
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-13-25
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-13-30
Meshes-of-the-Afternoon-1943-00-13-37


PopGap
Wire Creative Web Site Management
Dorrk
Dorrk Dot com
Santa's Li'l Gimp
The Godfather

The Top 20 Movies of All-Time

#1: The Godfather Part II (1974)

#1: The Godfather Part II (1974)

Dir: Francis Ford Coppola
#2: The Godfather (1972)

#2: The Godfather (1972)

Dir: Francis Ford Coppola
#3: West Side Story (1961)

#3: West Side Story (1961)

Dir: Jerome Robbins, Robert Wise
#4: Manhattan (1979)

#4: Manhattan (1979)

Dir: Woody Allen
#5: The Graduate (1967)

#5: The Graduate (1967)

Dir: Mike Nichols
#6: Tootsie (1982)

#6: Tootsie (1982)

Dir: Sydney Pollack
#7: Apocalypse Now (1979)

#7: Apocalypse Now (1979)

Dir: Francis Ford Coppola
#8: The Empire Strikes Back (1980)

#8: The Empire Strikes Back (1980)

Dir: Irvin Kershner
#9: Star Wars (1977)

#9: Star Wars (1977)

Dir: George Lucas
#10: The Exorcist (1973)

#10: The Exorcist (1973)

Dir: William Friedkin
#11: The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring (2001)

#11: The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring (2001)

Dir: Peter Jackson
#12: Taxi Driver (1976)

#12: Taxi Driver (1976)

Dir: Martin Scorsese
#13: Annie Hall (1977)

#13: Annie Hall (1977)

Dir: Woody Allen
#14: Vertigo (1958)

#14: Vertigo (1958)

Dir: Alfred Hitchcock
#15: Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981)

#15: Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981)

Dir: Steven Spielberg
#16: Boogie Nights (1997)

#16: Boogie Nights (1997)

Dir: Paul Thomas Anderson
#17: The Texas Chain Saw Massacre (1974)

#17: The Texas Chain Saw Massacre (1974)

Dir: Tobe Hooper
#18: It's a Wonderful Life (1944)

#18: It's a Wonderful Life (1944)

Dir: Frank Capra
#19: Singin' in the Rain (1952)

#19: Singin' in the Rain (1952)

Dir: Stanley Donen, Gene Kelly
#20: Zodiac (2007)

#20: Zodiac (2007)

Dir: David Fincher