Pfsuzy
12 min readJan 18, 2023

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BroSiding by Gerry Fialka Laughtears.com

BroSiding by Gerry Fialka Laughtears.com

The Brother Side of the Wake (aka (BroSide) is a feature film:

https://vimeo.com/584521229/000eb48be4?embedded=true&source=vimeo_logo&owner=20521024

These are some reaction comments:

1*** The best film I never want to watch again.

2*** Too hippie for me.

3*** Slightly mesmerizing self-indulgent hodgepodge.

4*** Opus Miraculous…Very funny, very clever, very YOU.

5***I watched your entire BroSide film, and it’s very evocative, funny and quite a marvelous piece of work with very professional production qualities but….this way lies madness. I’ll have to watch it again, take notes, and ask questions.

6*** I must say I have been haunted by a brief, but powerful moment … the simple 2 second shot of you on the boardwalk when you ask an unseen passerby “Do you know who you are ?” I think this is one of the best moments in all the films I have seen this year ! It stays with me !!

7***Gerry, your movie is an x-ray of your mind: like Arthur Miller starting the writing of Death of a Salesman by imagining a large skull (Willy Loman’s) filling the proscenium arch and the audience seeing everything in the protagonist’s mind all at once: the form is formlessness, a representation of consciousness itself: “Nothing floating in nothing.”

If art imposes order on chaos, then this film imposes no order, and embraces chaos: “we don’t know what cinema does to us — we just embrace it.” The editing rhythms capture this anchorlessness.

The film seems to be saying that the image of the lemon is ultimately whatever you make of it; don’t turn it into a metaphor; it won’t help you better understand the film: “you see what you look for…this reads as a birdhouse but you think of it as a lemon.” Elsewhere you say: “you have nothing to lose but your metaphors.” Which is it?

The film is a parody of experimental films. Love the parade of hilarious non-sequiturs. The editing is playful and energetic.

The film snubs its nose at the pretentiousness of philosophic inquiry, adopting an attitude of silliness and fun, in lieu of exploring ideas more deeply. You can still be fun and silly and ironic while going deeper; instead, filmmaker loads up screen time with question upon unexplored question. “I don’t want no content in my movie…there ain’t no content.” What’s wrong with content? Actually, there is a sufficiency of (potential) content; the problem, again, is lack of exploration.

The street interviews dilute the film, adding little to nothing, other than capturing human beings on the board walk — interesting from a documentary perspective, but feels out of step with the film.

8*** I just finished watching your astonishing film. I liked it. I learned quite a bit — McLuhan’s Tetrad media analysis, the definition of “flaneur”, the existence of Welles’ “The Other Side of the Wind”…are examples. The question: “If I were a chair, who would I want to sit on me?” gave me pause. I ended up thinking something along the lines of:

“If my sole purpose was to simply, momentarily & anonymously serve Life;

in an egoless & generous way;

with only the minor capacity to wait quietly, uncomplainingly & patiently in order to;

temporarily provide a small reduction of a trivial & largely unconscious instance of discomfort or ‘suffering’ for others;

a discomfort or suffering that could be relieved in many other ways;

for others who had not yet aWAKEned to that suffering;

for others who took my presence for granted;

for others whose notice of my presence would, for the most part, mean that I had added to their discomfort;

would that sole purpose suffice for me?” For is that not the purpose, the function of the bodhisattva?

(No answer came quickly to mind except an uncomfortable feeling at the pit of my stomach and a reformulation of your excellent question.) I liked the animation of the clown(?) and the drawing device which repeatedly frustrated, frightened and/or defeated him. The device seemed to be a metaphor for our Art or our Technology or Media as consuming us or frustrating us or defeating us whenever we think that we understand or control the art or technology or media. I liked the extended scenes of the sunset with the sounds of waves that seemed to simultaneously occur whenever someone walked between the camera and the sunset. The lemons were so big that they seemed more like Osage Oranges. In the past, I had an Osage Orange on my altar until it began to rot. The images of the rotting lemons brought to mind the old idea of new life emerging from the rot and death of older life. The idea of Finnegans Wake as the (untold) story of Helen of Troy was fascinating. It induced the thought that perhaps the Wake was the story of left-at-home Penelope and her dream of Odysseus who was more than likely dead. The preview encapsulated your film very well.

9*** Took a tinker’s while to get a quiet corner of the day to give your video the time it needs. Nice little Fluxist magnum opus you got there, son, marinaded with bebop hipster references and wry spiny transcendent hilarities. Beautiful mix of imagic modalities — you got yer home movies, you got yer lizardly tropical docu, you got yer 4k hi res talking head, you got yer Max Fleischer, You got yer bon mot captions, you got yer scratched emulsion, you got yer “student film” interview, the entire enchilida constituting a Dalio-Boschian walkabout emphasizing Suzy’s parting gesture — “Ain’t no content in this film…”

Moments of dazzle and inescapable impression -

a) 8:05–8mm treated film segment becomes a commute train. Got me a little swoony.

b) “Other Side of the Wind” was from Welles’ depredestined Fellini period, had Fellini a predelection for Vertovio-kinokian camera work.

c) A bit of the Bruce Connor got into your gas tank.

d) An aeoromachian twister ride minus Dorothy and Toto.

e) I’m going to have Freudio-phallic nightmares about ketchup fingers.

f) From visceral to cognitive, this puppy got more stretch than a rubber band motor.

g) Dede’s phone call.

h) Gleep.

I saved a copy into my Armageddon file, whereby civilization could be instantly reconstituted given dire enough circumstance. Excuse the excessive hyphenations, they are the fiber of my being, everything is hyphenated in there. “The lemon is outside the box” Yours ever loyal, Ferdock — Walter Alter. (editor’s note: I heard “Roll’em Ferdock” as a kid watching tv in the late 50’s. It could have been Steve Allen introducing cartoons? This made me the projectionist I am. Duchamp said that the artist of the future will only have to point . . . the projector.)

10*** I have enough chaos in my life. I shut it off as soon as the first commercials came on the Tubi version. (editors note: Like Marcel Duchamp keeping dust on his art, discussion of the relationship of advertising and BroSide will be the topic of an upcoming online Salon. Wanna join in?)

11*** I have watched your film just now and I found it brilliant, bold, mad, colorful, old worldly, very well done . . . delightful, fresh, supercaliforniagilistic and ever so lemony. My favorite quote, ‘Living is like licking honey off a thorn’ “- Louis Adamic.

12***I can’t watch ANYTHING these days, usually more than 40 seconds. I cannot stop watching your film, nor do I EVER want to. May it never end. Thank yo brother.

13*** I love your film, it’s brilliant, it’s wild, it’s Wonderful.

14*** It’s long.

15*** Still processing.

16*** I enjoyed “Brother Side.” It’s trippy, surreal, funny, and a bit scary. Are you trying to expose anal-retentive left brain people to the explosive irrationality of the right brain? (as James Joyce wrote, “I relieve their timid arses / Perform my office of catharsis”). But remember how the psychopath in Klute said that there are some doors that should never be opened? We’ll have to ask Jim Morrison about that. My wife said that she would let me sit on her. This could be the beginning of a whole new chapter in our relationship. . . . I liked the segue from nobody owns the sunset to the long sequence with the joggers, scooters, and bikes going by at sunset. That was a great job of directing to get those birds to fly across the horizon. Also, I always wanted and never got those luscious-looking grapes on the bough, but I never wanted them anyway. They were probably sour. Finnegans Wake has a phrase for the constant journey without a destination: “whorled without aimed” (page 272, line 5)

17*** 1. Tremendous effort starring all our favorite McLuhanites

2. Why the UCK was I not asked. Do you hate me that much?

3. Its long and elaborate

4. Reminds me of Chris Marker’s San Soleil, which I also fell asleep during.

5. I think the TV Static jump cut is a commonly used trope that doesnt register the same as it once did. You can improve on it

6. The Stream of consciousness is fun to listen to in the background but I wasnt always able to watch it

7. Title cards can improve: will be more legible if not outlined. Use flying text, or type text. Get more experimental or simplify. Use consistent san serif fonts

8. I learned a new word: Flaneur

9. The white coat makes me believe you more

10. Music in the bed under quotes is most effective

11. Conceptually, it’s not possible to encapsulate what is being said. Its purposely elusive, never resting long on a singular thought or refuting them later in the video

12. It feels like a Gerry discussion visualized. Or just drugs

13. Some interviews are great others are nonsense but play off well. I would trim some of fat by cutting some of the personal conversational elements. The convo between thoughts

14. I would consider playing with pace and rhythm in edit to emphasize points — thats assuming that audience understanding is your goal. Speed up and slow down

15. I wanna see melons start on tree, fall, ripe, rot…. through out the film to act as metaphor for getting older as you watch this

16. I like the blurry B/W segments — classic experimental film shit

17. I like the song at the end!!

18*** I love the kids singing over the end! Post a trailer with the end credits kids song over the whole thing.

19*** I really liked the sound selections, and the editing was fantastic. All your backyard ‘movie making’ was fun. Bruno did a great job with everything. I like his style. It feels modern — like it’s got all the youtube sensibilities hidden in there. But it’s also unique. Nice work! A great piece of art.

20*** I enjoyed watching it. It’s a panoply of imaginative ramblings replete with mind stimulating questions and quotes.

21*** I finally got around to finishing The Brother Side of the Wake and wanted to let you know that I thought it was a really brave piece of filmmaking and that it was very engaging to watch. It’s a perfect exploration and reflection of the ideas that you have always promoted and advocated for; the intersection of shifting realities and human perception and emotion. The main reason that I think it’s strong is because it asks lots of great questions, questions that are well worth asking and not easily answered, and shows the glory of the panoplies of attempts at answers. Also, there’s something so perfectly quirky about the nature of these questions that reflect the true open minded and free thinking character of the neighborhood and culture of Venice that you yourself are the best spokesman for.

If you were a chair, who would you want to sit on you?

Can you forget to die?

Are we watching it happen or making it happen?

What about technologies as the collective unconscious and art as the collective unconsciousness? (-McLuhan)

What’s the best thing for a human being?

Why do we have to name and purse a destination if the journey is more important?

I have a good feeling that some of the museums that are soft on cinema may be quite interested in screening it. Well done.

22*** I loved it. It has the type of lively editing & multi-formatting & philosophical discombobulation that’s right up my alley.

23*** I felt like your film was the Venice Beach version of “Un Chien Andalou.” You dove into a pulse of Venice and had fun with its contradictions and delicious satire. It romped through and gave light to many of the creative lives that inhabit today’s Venice world. Congratulations is in order.

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We welcome comments and feel grateful to all who contribute. So far, we’ve omitted listing names of commentators. If you’d like your name listed, please add it to the comment section at the link on Medium.com. I’ve seen the best minds of my generation not responding to BroSide… “If you don’t have nothing nice to say, say it anyways, ’cause critical thinking makes the whirled go round.”

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BroSiding Addendum by Gerry Fialka

When I was 17, Marshall McLuhan (Culture Is Our Business, 1970) wrote, “Poets and artists live on frontiers. They have no feedback, only feedforward. They have no identities. They are probes.” This must have got telepathically engrained in my brain, but I did not take it seriously. Then I learned from Alan Watts that everybody is trying to find out who they are. If you do, you are ucked. Yikes?

Eventually this caused me to reword McLuhan’s “The Balinese have no word for art. They do everything as well as they can” to “The Fialka filmmaker has no word for art. He does everything as bad as he can.” Copout as art form? Content as fart form?

Probing a good scheme? (The word “scheme” etymologically is rooted in “figure of speech,” “posture in dancing,” and “the nature of a thing.”)

Hoicking up loopholes? May I leave it to you, dear Reader, to connect the dots?

“Think outside the Box” morphs into . . .

“Think outside the Bro”

“Think outside the But”

“Think outside the Side”

“Think outside the Out”

“Think outside the Think”

? ? ? ?

Then I made a feature film with alot of helpful friends, especially Bruno Kohfield-Galeano. I conned multitudes. I meme, “I contain multitudes,” as Whitman whistled while he played. I am open source. I am algorithm. I am nothingness. I am knot.

A knot is a timber imperfection. So I started to write my own Finnegans Wake called Wouldman. How could I flip a break down into a breakthrough? I would if I could in Holywood? How about Venice? Bingo’ago’go? The year 2022 saw da birth of The Brother Side of the Wake (aka BroSide) https://broside.wordpress.com/ online streaming. The reactions started to appear.

I feel like an outsider artist. Maybe the better wording is an other side artist. Carry the tune Mother People by Frank Zappa, “We are the other people, You’re the other people too.” “Nothing is what I want.” — Zappa, who also sang “I can’t wait to see what it’s like on the outside now.” Tetradic flipping back to Captain Beefheart spewing, “Music from the other side of the fence.” Let us pry and probe the Menippean Mobius Strip Tease.

For a deeper delve into BroSide, visit https://laughtears.com/broside.html

and https://laughtears.com/broside-reactions.html

for dvd extras, commentary tracks, analysis, and more fun.

As D.H. Lawrence wrote in admiration of Cezanne’s paintings, “It’s the appleyness, which carries with it the feeling of knowing the other side as well, the side you don’t see. . . The eye sees only fronts, and the mind, on the whole is satisfied with fronts. But intuition needs all-aroundness, and instincts needs insideness. The true imagination is forever curving round to the other side, the back of presented appearances.” “I walked outside today, and the void was shining.” — poet Franz Wright. “The point of art is to show people that life is worth living by showing that it isn’t” — poet Fanny Howe.

BroSide is an interactive performance art piece that can be screened with the audience as participants. Inquire within.

I am grateful to all the people who help me. We combine McLuhan’s mosaic writing techniques, effects-precede-causes, sense-ratio-shifting, and Tetrad management to percept plunder the recent future. I am constantly wondering about words like “vulnerable,” “integrity,” “eternity,” “warmth,” “archives” (hunting for the lost) and “mo” . . . (as in MoSide aka The Mother Side of the Wake). Watch MoSide teaser trailers:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FKhUyVgvt8Y&t=28s

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YM342xK58tM

MoSide is a demake of the non-existent(?) prequel to “2001: A Space Odyssey.” “The Other Side of the Sky” is a collection of science fiction short stories by English writer Arthur C. Clarke, originally published in 1958. “2001” is a 1968 film. The screenplay was written by Kubrick and science fiction author Arthur Clarke, and was inspired by Clarke’s 1951 short story “The Sentinel” and other short stories by Clarke. Does this raises questions of origin and cross-overs?

READ= https://thevenicebeachhead.com/2023/01/17/but-did-you-die-by-gerry-fialka/

JOIN US APRIL 2, 2023 — https://www.facebook.com/events/842381870350476/

Pull My Daisy -Suzy sings Ginsburg- from Venice Beats = https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qwZHNx5qWIY

GF’s Venice BeachHead Beats article: https://thevenicebeachhead.com/2022/09/02/our-story-by-gerry-fialka/

and fun tour of the venue= https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s9vsPk1iSts

Short film about Bob Dylan & Frank Zappa,

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ASGJUwl8dks

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