A frame from DIAGONAL SYMPHONY, directed by Viking Eggeling.

Diagonal Symphony (1924, Viking Eggeling)

If I knew how Eggeling made the shapes in Diagonal Symphony move–or if I was really into geometry (but probably not)–I might appreciate it more.

The short is some shapes doubling and duplicating until they eventually start rescinding. The shapes aren’t interesting; in fact, when Eggeling does complicate the object, Symphony becomes less engaging. At least the less complicated objects move better together.

Eggeling’s greatest success is the editing. He’ll have two objects of differing sizes moving in different directs and the timing of the cut is dependent on one of them. It’s unpredictable and engaging editing.

Otherwise, Symphony just goes on too long. It could have easily run half its length–especially when the final stage, large object disappears for a minute or two, before returning with no discernible reason.

That ending would be disruptive. Instead, Eggeling shrinks the object down, tilting and repeating the opening in reverse.

1/3Not Recommended

CREDITS

Directed by Viking Eggeling.

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