May I interest you in a radical new cinema— The Lilith-Vue?
First let’s (re)acquaint ourselves with Lilith— a forage through our religio-mythological catalogues of mankind’s conception:
Lilith was Adam’s wife before Eve—deemed unsuitable because of her sexual voracity and disdain of the Missionary position. As far as sex was concerned, she liked to be the top banana. Someone apparently had enough when Lilith got it into her head to strangle the sleeping Adam with her brilliant red serpentine tresses. She was banished to the desert places—where she copulated with demons and birthed a million imps on the beach every morning. And feasted on them at night. Such was her fate. In the meantime, Adam was appointed the more reasonable Eve as wife and they lived happily in Eden for a while. And that for a while was that.
Or was it?
It would seem that the Serpent, who factored in the ousting of the happy couple from the Garden, smacked suspiciously of the ex-wife. It was the hair— that serpentine coil so ready to extinguish the life from Adam was now most fervent to shift Eve’s viewpoint. And why was Eve not to eat the forbidden fruit?
“Because we’ll die if we do” Eve replies (by way of paraphrasing)
“No honey,” counters the Serpentine Coil, “It’s more like ‘you will be as Gods—”
“Oh,” says Eve, and then eats the fruit. She liked the idea of being top banana too.
Ah Lilith, always so eager to revamp our perspectives…
We catch a lethal glimpse of her as Gorgon Medusa, fabulous with (yikes!) snakes for tresses and a petrifying Gaze. Then as the stepmother who sullies Snow White’s virtue with apples. Also: the scary sorceress who has only to unknot her voluptuous ringlets, to unleash dire weather patterns from across the region.
You probably know Lilith already, even if you didn’t have a name for her.Remember the scene in the thriller, the uncanny object that seems to stare at—you…
Recall the eye of the Gorgon: the pit of horror that petrifies…
Recast the presence in the Garden, the one there before you—a ghost of indignities past, beckoning…
This is the Lilith-Vue, dear traveller, the vantage point from which you too become fatale, regardless of gender.
How? It’s all in the syntax, as E.M Forster said, “only connect”
And connect we will.
This template I’m about to introduce is guaranteed to make you conjugate dangerously and fabulously.
Several arbitrary snapshots and quotes, each picture becomes a complex strand in a DNA sequence. It slithers around your mind in typical Lilith fashion and has little spores that connect to other previously unrelated data: thus a plot is hatched—
This brings us to the plot. Comedy or Tragedy (or Dramedy) as we have learnt from Eden is dependent on speed (the velocity of the Fall from grace.) In the Eden of early cinema, all the slapstick violence is pretty elastic and harmless— a complete lack of gravity to compound matters. With the fatale, the pace becomes more deliberate and weighted to reveal the presence of the outsider within. With Lilith-Vue, you can adjust the timing of the scene/strands to the right duration to make you laugh or cry. Or both.
With Lilith-Vue, you will reach various conclusions at the same time, the “plot” is never resolved and more story lines are generated (one million imps a day, yum!) Lilith-Vue is creative consumerism.
My ambition for the movie that appears in your head is for it to have all the (desired) tautness of a Hitchcock thriller and the banal sexiness of a Fassbinder.
The moral of Lilith-Vue is that all things fascinate—
You only need to target that point of tension in a scene
Then inhabit it,
Like the proverbial Jewel in the Garden
From where the world is a many-splendoured thing
the plot unfolds simultaneously
your Mind’s Eye
Celluloid Serpents Spiral
and unfold in your head as
You fix the World
with the single projection of your
SPIRAL XY: WALTER
Dark screen. Slow luminous words appear:
WE KNOW NOTHING OF WOMAN’S CULTURE, JUST AS WE KNOW NOTHING OF THE CULTURE OF THE YOUNG — WALTER BENJAMIN
SPIRAL X: THE KITCHEN
The photograph, a glorious blur pulled into focus. A sentimental piano swells into a national anthem of sorts, overtaken by the clacking of a typewriter:
What you are seeing here is a testament to the decadence of our society. The single father left at home to fend for his two children. Alone.The morning this surveillance snapshot was taken, his wife and mother of the children left to compete in a beauty pageant. When she won, she completely disappeared from their lives all together.
These sort of inconsequentialities promoted by our despotic former Mayor, far from harmless, succeeded in destroying the very fabric of our society.
SPIRAL Y: PINE CONES
Moody spy music plays accompanied by the voice of a robotic female:
It is the near future.
National Boundaries have collapsed into corporate structures— departments and divisions now run the world. The only espionage left is inter-departmental. It’s all about the BUDGET and how you can absorb one division and it’s budget into your own…
You are special agent JIMMY ANACONDA, you have been assigned to case #9917. Using this subject as exemplar, your object is to determine that the single unemployed mother is counter to the productivity of the corporate structure. Kindly provide evidence to support the invective. The single unemployed mother should be redistributed as labor, her children assigned to units where they will be better applied.
You have 12:00:00 HRS.
00:00:10 The subject enters a department store
00:00:11 She is at the makeup counter
00:00:11 She tries on several shades of lipstick: coral tangerine, fudge tango
00:00:20 She is trying on eyeshadow: pale baby blues, powder pinks and beige
00:05:11 She is applying mascara, long black spikes over dilate pupils
00:06:12 She applies blusher: peach nude
00:09:45 Subject is in the park
00:10:21 She heads for the playground
00:10:23 She heads for the swings
00:10:32 Subject #9917 is swinging
Transmission: JIMMY ANACONDA there is an ellipsis in your report:
.32 minutes unaccounted for.
These are signs of reverie.
Please retain focus JIMMY ANACONDA
00:11:20 The subject continues to swing
00:12:22 It has been noted elsewhere that Women, of course, were the first transport vehicles—
00:12:50 First in the sexual act and then in childbearing
00:17:01 It is no wonder that simple innovations in velocity delight them—
Transmission: You digress. Come in JIMMY ANACONDA
00:17:22 The park is not so empty
00:17:25 there is a presence—of sorts
00:17:27 a garland of pine cones hanging between the trees
00:17:30 a little cosmetic don’t you think
00:18:00 A bit like gilding the lilith, wouldn’t you say?
Transmission: You are rhapsodizing! Come in JIMMY ANACONDA
You are special agent jIMMY ANACONDA of the Welfare Department. You have been assigned to case #9917. Your object is to determine the subject’s secret weapon (her ‘je ne sais quoi’) and use it against her.
You have 00:12:00hrs.
SPIRAL XXY: SHE’S THE MOSTEST!
Dialogue in which one person explains to the other that the pageant was really a cover to kidnap the Mayor and and replace him with a clone (just lke Jimmy Carter.) The Mayor, because of his famed lechery, could hardly resist attending. the strategy was to overpower him when he went to the bathroom and release his double to the public. The drugged Mayor was then loaded into a cleaning cart and boarded onto a plane bound for the Foreign Territories.
So why was this picture used as evidence?
Because on of the girls in the front row had such well polished boots—if you look close you can discern the reflection of the cleaning cart boarding the plane.
SPIRAL XYY: ADOLF
BLACK. A luminous emission of letters:
AS CULTURE DEVELOPS, ORNAMENT DISAPPEARS FROM EVERYDAY OBJECTS — ADOLF LOOS, ORNAMENT AND CRIME
SPIRAL YYY: VENUS
Transmission: JIMMY ANACONDA, your assignment was to go back into the past and ascertain as to whether there was or was not a woman on the moon. What where your findings?
Come in JIMMY ANACONDA.
11:27:00:96 There are two strands to this story
11:27:00:96 The person hitherto known to us as “Venus” was either an Ur-Deity
11:27:00:98 Or the winner of a beauty pageant
11:27:00:99 The winner was photographed on the Moon
11:27:02:00 Which was really a beach
11:27:02:00 Unlittered with McDonald’s (one billion served)
11:27:00:96 A logical conclusion is that the Moon itself is a myth
SPIRAL YXY: THE BODY OF THE DESPOT
The Mayor was very much relishing his role as judge at the beauty pageant. He like the “exotica” segment even better—most girls performed a dance of seven veils or something equally as sumptuous. One woman in particular made him uncomfortable, she decided to play Scheherazade, the story teller. Her tale was of a despotic ruler, far far away and a long long time ago—who was tricked and trapped while in a harem. She said far away and long ago, but when she flashed her long dark lashes at him, he felt certain that she was referring to him. Her pupils seemed absent and he felt like—he felt like he needed to go the bathroom.
He felt sick. The Mayor excused himseld and got up.
In the bathroom stall, there was something very strange: sitting on the toilet bowl, a man who looked exactly like him.
©2000, 2013 onome ekeh