WUFF is thrilled to present two acclaimed works by one of Canada’s most important and challenging figures in independent cinema. Mike Hoolboom has produced more than fifty films and videos since 1980 and has written prolifically on art and cinema throughout his career. Since being diagnosed with HIV in 1989, his work has largely concerned itself with themes of the body, disease, loss, and impermanence, but also activism, memory, love and hope. Frank’s Cock (winner of the TIFF Best Canadian Short Film award) and Tom (originally released in 2002 and reedited in 2009) provide a concise introduction to Hoolboom’s powerful body of work.
Frank’s Cock dir. Mike Hoolboom
1993 | CA | 8 | 16mm on video
A four-sided look at AIDS, a first person testament that is alternately funny and sad, relating the meeting of two lovers and their sexual adventures. As the story of their life is told by its survivor, the screen divides into four scenes revealing the storyteller, footage shot inside the body, a montage of performance art and gay porn. This division within the frame replays the effect of the virus, multiplying its deadly effects in a phantasmagoria of loss. An elegy for a friend. —MH
Tom dir. Mike Hoolboom
2002 / 2009 | CA | 53 | 16mm on video
A dazzling experimental documentary about notorious cineaste Tom Chomont. Tom narrates his recollections and transgressions against a dizzying array of found footage, video, super 8 and photographs. At moments, he appears in front of the camera, alternately flamboyant or fragile. His revelations cover a broad scope from sadomasochistic desire through existential vulnerability to an incestuous relationship. With this extraordinary portrait, Hoolboom creates a different kind of biography film, one that eschews traditional mimetic realism in order to depict the reminiscences of a fading life lived in the throes of image culture. —Diane Burgess (Professor of Theatre and Film at the University of British Columbia)
* images from Mike Hoolboom's Tom