Davis Silis - 6th Nov 2014

French directing trio AB/CD/CD have long been visual adventurers, impeccably crafting mind-bending concepts into playful if not downright puzzling and remarkable videos. Their latest outing with Panda Bear for Mr Noah is no exception.

The visual hook AB/CD/CD puts to use is seemingly simple on the surface; its effect, anything but. A camera elliptically prowls through disjointed scenes, following unseemly characters while blurs of colour flash up, somewhat like the blink of an eye, yet also like the Jeremy Blake references P.T. Anderson used to stitch together narrative and base emotion in Punch Drunk Love

Altogether, this mixture creates the disorienting sensation that you’ve somehow just discovered a new hallucinogenic and have taken it out for a spin. In fact, the remarkable thing about this video is less about what happens in front of the lens, but how it happens. Somehow, AB/CD/CD have managed to make the camera a true character – an active participant rather than objective observer.

The entire aesthetic of this video hinges on the idea of disconnecting our entrenched expectations of how a camera ought to look and feel when you show up at a location and let it roll. That’s no easy task. It’s not a matter of just throwing in a few visual effects; AB/CD/CD have managed something more intuitive. It’s reminiscent of an earlier era; how Gondry and Cunningham often made you feel like they weren’t using the same tools available to other filmmakers. Of course, their concepts were remarkable and unique, but the *execution* of those concepts were a part of what made them stick.

So, once again, AB/CD/CD have created a subtle yet striking piece of work that makes you sit up and say, ‘I don’t know what that was, but I have to see more.’


Production CompanyPartizan
Executive ProducerClaire Stubbs
ProducerAdam Farley
Production ManagerJon Mealing
1st ADJames Dyer
Director of PhotographyOlivier Cariou
SteadicamThomas English
Art DirectorMikey Hollywood
StylistJoseph Crone
Hair & Make-upEmily Bilverstone
EditorJoce Hockings
ColouristMatt Hare
CommissionerPeter Berard

Davis Silis - 6th Nov 2014

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