Feb 10, 2011

Massage the History



Nowadays, with access to affordable (or easily stolen) non-linear video-editing programs and fathomless access to download-able video footage on the internet, pretty much everyone has the resources needed to make art films. Of course, most people are not artists and lack the unique sensitivity/sensibility that is imperative when producing notable works of art. I have seen my fair share of disposable art films (the majority fit in this category), so when I saw the short video collage Massage the History directed by Cameron Jamie, I was more than a little bit pleasantly surprised. Tennessee Israelite auteur Harmony Korine has given high artistic praise to the film, eloquently stating, "This shit is fucking mind-blowing." Like Harmony Korine's recent effort Trash Humpers, Massage the History features a group of dubious individuals from the deep South molesting inanimate objects. Both films also manage to capture the peculiar zeitgeist of our deranged and backwards times; Trash Humpers presenting a cult of elderly white trash humanoids and Massage the History featuring a group of bourgeois blacks busting out mad, ambiguously homoerotic (often grinding into each other) tribal dance attacks. 


The lone song featured in Massage the History, which is of the same name as the film, was written by Sonic Youth. In 1998, Harmony Korine directed a Sonic Youth video for the song "Sunday," starring Macaulay Culkin and his then wife, Rachel Minor. Although Korine's Sonic Youth video is undoubtedly one of my favorite music videos, the audio/visual combination featured in Massage the History, in my opinion, is even more cinematically refined and inspiring. In fact, despite only being around 10 minutes in length, I felt that Massage the History was a much more profound work than Korine's most recent feature-length film Trash Humpers. Harmony Korine has described Cameron Jamie as a truly American artist and an "artist's artist," two compliments that I have always paid to Korine. Another reason I have always admired Harmony Korine is due to his rare ability to find beauty in the most unappealing and repellent of American cultural sewers. Cameron Jamie also indubitably has the rare ability to create aesthetic ecstasy through his own perceptive and personal trash-Americana-admiring artistic lens. Before watching Massage the History, I would have never expected to find elegance in the form of possessed bourgeois Negroes gently humping Ikea furniture.


Director Cameron Jamie originally got the idea for Massage the History after randomly stumbling upon dancing videos featuring the dancing confederate Negroes that would star in the film. In fact, Massage the History features various unrelated clips that the director found on YouTube. I can only assume that the bodacious black boyz of Massage the History dance in celebration as the white world is engulfed in perpetual flames (in the form of a scorching Christmas tree and flaming skateboarder). The film also features an elder Negress absurdly walking her pet cat on a leash. Whilst the glue sniffing white boys of Harmony Korine's Gummo kill cats for fun and profit (to support their glue habit), the black woman featured in Massage the History allows her aristo-cat to eat at the dinner table like a human. Without the massage and revision of history by the New Left in the late 1960s, in favor of the American Negro as the noble savage victim, it is highly doubtful that the chair raping Southern brothas featured in Massage the History would be living such lavish lives (a result of affirmative action and America's commitment to "diversity").  A sagely redneck once told me, "If blacks can't eat it or fuck it, they break it."  The bourgie blacks featured in Massage the History would certainly have a hard time eating their furniture, so I guess they opted for preserving it by fucking it. Thankfully, pioneering American filmmaker D.W. Griffith is not alive to see the film, as the prophetic racialist message that he warned of regarding black-white integration in his groundbreaking 1915 epic The Birth of a Nation has become nightmarishly true. The Birth of a Nation may have featured savage Negro legislators lounging with their bare-feet on the table whilst eating fried chicken in governmental chambers, but that pales (no black-face intended) in comparison to the jiving jigaboo juveniles featured in Massage the History. Harmony Korine once remarked that American cinema had not advanced far past (as far as storytelling goes) the work of D.W. Griffith. Massage the History certainly is a new form of abstract, non-linear storytelling, that induces a trance on the audience comparable to the spell guiding the Jazzy chair humpers featured in the film. If you're an inspiring filmmaker and/or serious patron of cinematic art, Massage the History will have you enamored from the start. Never in my life have I sniggered so hard after watching a film featuring furniture fornicators. Praise Cameron Jamie, for Massage the History is a religious experience concocted by an auteur priest.


-Ty E

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

so so clever

Infinite Jester said...

Wow. I don't even know how to adequately express how well put together this is! Stream of consciousness i-bile at it's best.

jervaise brooke hamster said...

"Stream of consciousness i-bile" ? ! ? !...er...Infinite Jester, have you ever heard of Heather O`Rourke?...hint...hint.

dollhousevato said...
This comment has been removed by the author.