1. A young woman, living alone in Manhattan, tries to find a way out of her solitude through connections in the strange new world of the online network. Through this simple departure point complex issues emerge: What is it to be alone? What is it being one’s self? What is it to be a woman today? What is it to be real, to be naked, with another — who is only on screen? Raimonda Skeryte in a beautiful and understated performance explores these questions by becoming a mirror for seeing our own sexuality, our boredom, and global interconnected loneliness. From encounters with Yakuza gangsters to international sex workers and through Skeryte’s own sexual awakening the work gives visibility to how images of our selves are created in our digital society. It is simultaneously an exploration of what it means to make — and watch — film today; what it means to inhabit a system that is always recording, where identity is always and already enmeshed in the web of becoming.

    REVIEWS / ESSAYS
    'If net living were a movie, this would be it. Lafia knows what you do and what you want to do, as well as how you feel about it. Crazy good. And restrained, even!'
    Douglas Rushkoff, author, media theorist, Program or Be Programmed

    'The concept is completely relevant, our global interconnected loneliness.'
    Jean Christian Bourcart, artist

    'Poignant and beautiful. A profound loneliness permeates the film. Raimonda Skeryte has a radiant presence, dare I say as deep and captivating as Renée Jeanne Falconetti in The Passion of Joan of Arc.'
    Lizzie Gottlieb film director, Today's Man

    'A new way to think film and cinema as a kind of networked publics. Great and innovative project that lets us see the very wired forms of social relationships that are hard to describe. A great movie. That females will often get social feedback and get hooked in these new services, as this women in your movie is precise and accurate. The movie describes this feeling of loneliness, and hope of social acceptance extraordinarily well.'
    Petter.B.Brandtzag, social media theorist

    'Powerful and intimate. This is a network life. In her solitude, she remains connected — however ethereally, however precariously — to the world around her. Only the world around her is more often than not a telepresence. As users of Chatroulette discover, once the meta-narrative of identity disappears — once we stop naming ourselves, stop declaring our social status, our taste, our social tethers such as work and education — we discover something else. Within the presumed mediation of the screen, we discover the immediacy of the encounter.'
    Daniel Coffeen, social philosopher

    # vimeo.com/45556355 Uploaded 35.2K Plays 2 Comments
  2. The struggles of a young man struck by bohemia, in pain, curious, yearning, sexually, psychologically coming to know himself. It is a long form narrative shot in 35 about the narrative of self. Screened at Seattle International Film Festival, 2000. Mill Valley. 2000 Portland G&L, 2002 Festival, Los Angeles, G&L Festival, San Francisco

    REVIEWS
    ....In his directorial debut, Marc Lafia weaves a rich visual fabric to create an emotional texture that is sensual and sophisticated. Provocative cinematography, and a poetic juxtaposition of flashback sequences create an unsparing portrait of a young man breaking free. Exploding Oedipusis a story of transgression, exposing the complex relationships between memory, fear, and desire.
    2002 Portland LGBT Film Festival

    ...An intriguing addition to the festival, since Marc Lafia’s film isn’t really queer. Lafia is interested in the twinned structures of love and betrayal... Joplin Wu’s cinematography is nothing less than mesmerizing, as is Lafia’s poetic script. Exploding Oedipus deserves a wider distribution. (SS)
    WW Picks

    ...First-time San Francisco director Marc Lafia has created a beautiful and mysterious film that manages to be both artistic and accessible as it takes us deep into the hero’s psyche in search of answers that may or may not be there to find. And a sensitive performance by Ramsay makes us care.
    26 San Francisco International lesbian&Gay Film Festival

    An exquisite, ballsy first feature by Marc Lafia, EXPLODING OEDIPUS bursts upon the screen with the dark and ominous beauty of an inky-black sunspot... The film’s rambling plot and cryptic psychological through line are reminiscent of Mike Leigh’s NAKED, but Lafia’s San Francisco is distinctly new: a dreamy, atmospheric mindscape in which the odd ray of sunlight only enhances Hilbert’s isolation in this multilayered, sexy feature.
    2002 outfest

    # vimeo.com/34307127 Uploaded 9,865 Plays 0 Comments
  3. Two young women meet in an explosive and highly emotional love story where love, art and revolution ignite.

    In this film 9 women record themselves being alone. At times they get together as an experimental arts collective hotly debating the value of their private work and whether to do public performances. Two of them fall in love. One becomes obsessed with the other and simultaneously imagines an idealized love while the other wants her to find the revolutionary part of herself. Revolution of Everyday Life is a document of actresses playing actresses who play characters that fall in love. It is at the same time a love story that happens in the realm of fiction and in the realm of recorded reality. The result is a documentary film within a fictional one. The film becomes a site not for representation but discovery. It is a structure for things to happen, it becomes the site for performing, not acting, not re-presenting desire, but to enact it - it is a longing for politic of desire and an expression of its urgency.

    REVIEWS

    "The banker, the revolutionary, performance and reality, youth in search of a politic, all the contemporary conversations and confusions about love, money, friendship, it's all here, very smart..."
    Todd Stevens, producer, Friends

    “Raw, real and beautiful.”
    T.G. Herrington, editor, The Mechanic

    “...an amazing character study... while watching this film, one can not look away...the main character's face followed my thoughts for days after...”
    Nestor Gonzales, film curator

    # vimeo.com/29645915 Uploaded 1,854 Plays 0 Comments
  4. A group of theater students get together in the park to discuss 'fiction and the real.' Soon, through a series of fables authored by their theater professor, Solange, we witness their true desires, fears, disappointments. Ultimately we discover an alternative way of seeing through film and the act of recording. It is a film as much about reality, humanity and identity, as it is about film itself, seeing and being seen.

    REVIEWS
    “Real Unreal Surreal”
    Alan Berliner, Three time Emmy Award
    Winner

    “Paradise’ reflects Marc Lafia’s dilemmas, loves, questions, frustrations and happiness-es. It feels a bit like ‘WEEKEND’ except Marc Lafia style...the photography is amazing...
    Nina Menkes, Filmmaker

    “Symbiopsychotaxiplasm -- Paradise is a gem sharing the same genetic material.”
    Michael Chichi, Designer

    “Profound reckoning with the very limits of the moving image. Paradise disarms the viewer of their expectations of conventional film narrative, inviting the viewer instead to ‘go with’ the flow of a film that is an open-structured happening, moving images in a state of becoming.”
    Daniel Coffeen, Philosopher

    “A midsummer nights dream that provokes the imagination.”
    Duane Dell’Amico,, UCLA Film Professor

    # vimeo.com/34344294 Uploaded 634 Plays 0 Comments
  5. Part diary, part documentary, part tragic tale, this film follows a couple from Park Slope, Brooklyn — an artist, his muse wife, and their two small children — through their neighborhood and into the wide world of art. Through recordings of themselves and their travels in the contemporary international art world, we discover the intimacy of love, art, life and everything in between. A rare film about art that is itself art.

    REVIEWS / ESSAYS
    'Amazing and wonderful... one of the most intimate films I have ever seen yet underlined with strength and ballast.'
    Alan Berliner
    filmmaker, three time Emmy award winner

    'This is the rare film about art that is itself art. The lover becomes love, and the artist becomes art. This film is not really about either love or art. It is love; it is art. '
    Daniel Coffeen
    author

    # vimeo.com/34312675 Uploaded 389 Plays 0 Comments

Feature films

marc lafia

Today we see a cinema that is and speaks to an always-being-imaged environment; a cinema that is always on, always imaging, but not necessarily recording—a cinema that is so real time, so always on, it is not so much recorded but simply as pervasive as…


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Today we see a cinema that is and speaks to an always-being-imaged environment; a cinema that is always on, always imaging, but not necessarily recording—a cinema that is so real time, so always on, it is not so much recorded but simply as pervasive as the air.

This condition of the network I will call a cinema of the immediate, which is a cinema of the intimate and the network a new cinematic apparatus. What happens when the seer is seen and the seer sees the seeing, when all seers not only see but represent themselves to be seen, when offscreen is always on-screen, some other screen.

If cinema can be read and considered as one narrative of film recording, what is the narrative of digital recording, cinema without film? Cinema without a starting point of film recording and projection, a cinema that is not based on film and fixed playback?

With the rise of digital technology—and with it the network and the computational—I wanted to (re)create a new kind of cinema, one that was no longer limited by the inflexibility of camera and celluloid.

After years of doing new-media work, I return to narrative cinema, presenting here nine feature-length narrative films made in as many years, an essay film, and my Permutations, a rules-based project consisting of making at least one multiscreen film a day over the course of a year. Most of the works have been made with very small crews, committed actors, and a very tactical, pragmatic, adventurous sense of filmmaking. Rather than starting from a place where we say, “We need this location, this actor, this amount of money,” we ask ourselves, “What do
we have?” The answer is simple: we have each other, myself, the writer-director; a very carefully selected group of actors; a committed, thoughtful assistant, an excellent camera and sound person (both filmmakers in their own right)—that’s really what we have, and sometimes we have less.

So how can we make films, what strategies can we employ, and who will watch these films?

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