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The Drunkard's Lament
(40:15, 2018)
An epistolary, musical reimagining of Wuthering Heights by Branwell—the tubercular, alcoholic and opium-addicted brother of Emily Brontë.

When Branwell — the ne’er-do-well, tubercular brother of the Brontë sisters — discovered that Emily was writing her first novel, he offered to be her editor. Once he realized that he was the model for the alcoholic Hindley Earnshaw character, he reimagined the story as a musical memoir of his own life with Hindley as the hero. Edited and arranged from the damaged film fragments, notes, sheet music and letters to his best friend Francis, this weird and revisionist adaptation looks to have premiered on the 50th anniversary of the deaths of Emily and Branwell Brontë.

This April in Buenos Aires the movie will premiere as part of the Avant-Garde & Genre Competion of BAFICI.

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The soundtrack was created by musician Colleen Burke. She brought together musicians like Jim White (The Dirty Three), Sally Timms (The Mekons), Michael James and Munaf Rayani (Explosions in the Sky) to create this strange revisionist musical. This is the fourth film that Jim Finn and Colleen Burke have collaborated on. The other films Interkosmos, La Trinchera Luminosa del Presidente Gonzalo and Chums from Across the Void have all gone on to have some kind of cult musical status.

Jim Finn brings back actors from previous films to play the two Cathy’s: Isabella Pinheiro from Chums and Nandini Khaund from Interkosmos. Murray Gordon (Heathcliff), a South African philosopher and tech entrepreneur, is acting in his first film though his brother played a minor character in Roman Polanski’s Macbeth. Linda Montano (Hindley Earnshaw) is a seminal performance artist best known for her acupunctured-head video Mitchell’s Death and being roped together for a year with Taiwanese performance artist Tehching Hsieh. Jesse Stiles returns to work his sound magic. He teaches at Carnegie Mellon and has worked on projects by the Merce Cunningham Dance Company, The Yes Men, filmmaker Penny Lane as well as various films by Jim Finn. Filmmaker Josh Lewis created the handmade 16mm film emulsion for the project at his artist-run lab in Ridgewood, Queens.






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