20 Years of Hits and Misses

A Bill Mousoulis Super-8 Retrospective

20 short Super-8 films spanning the years 1982 to 2002

Erwin Rado Theatre, 211 Johnston St. Fitzroy,
Friday, November 15, 2002, 7:30 p.m.
Entry: $5 / $3 concession.
Enquiries: 9417 5538 or 0419 367 393.

Knowing Me, Knowing You
Bill in Knowing Me, Knowing You (1988)

Side A - Hits Side B - Misses
1. Dreams Never End (1983, 9 mins)
2. Love Letter (1985, 6 mins)
3. Physical World (1986, 10 mins)
4. Knowing Me, Knowing You (1988, 6 mins)
5. Crazy Motherfucker (1989, 3 mins)
6. Love (1991, 3 mins)
7. Rich Woods '90-'95 (1995, 7 mins)
8. Fit Waters '95-? (1995, 3 mins)
9. The Shadows (1996, 5 mins)
10. Winter (1998, 8 mins)
1. Doubt (1982, 8 mins)
2. Fun Girl (1986, 4 mins)
3. The Green Door (1986, 5 mins)
4. Richmond Girl (1990, 6 mins)
5. Makes Me Stronger (1996, 8 mins)
6. Green (1996, 3 mins)
7. The Wild Bunch (1997, 2 mins)
8. Underground Sky (1998, 16 mins)
9. The Circle Turns (2000, 7 mins)
10. The Color of Murder (2002, 4 mins)

Side A - Hits

A1. Dreams Never End (1983, 9 mins)

Featuring: Mary Mousoulis, John Stenos, Monica Mousoulis.

A look at the life of a 16-year-old girl, focusing on the person she loves and what happens to him, and how it affects her.

"The Bresson of Super-8, Bill Mousoulis, makes films which are a sublime and quizzical mix of down-home observational physicality and transcendental spirituality, luminous with both the sadness and potentiality of individual dreaming. You won't believe it until you see it. Dreams Never End is a classic."
                                                       - Adrian Martin, "Adrian Martin Selection" notes, Sep 1986.

A2. Love Letter (1985, 6 mins)

Featuring: John Karouzakis, Bill Mousoulis (V/O).

A love letter is written and then sent off.

"An extremely sensitive film about a young man's conception, composition and posting of a love letter ..... Whatever the result of the letter, he has gained peace by acting. An intense and emotive film which some audiences may find a little too introspective and taut."            
                                                    - Nadine Myatt, Filmviews, Autumn 1986.

A3. Physical World (1986, 10 mins)

Featuring: Matthew Rees, Georgina Campbell, Anita Campbell, Barry Branchflower.

A man and a woman prepare to go to work in the morning.

"Physical World is dry, austere, methodical. However, it is a film which draws the viewer's attention away from the surface towards a deeper meaning. We cannot accept that Life, as represented in the first three quarters of the film, is solely composed of the dull, everyday physical activities that we are watching - there must be something more. Through implication the answer is conveyed - yes there is more. There is love. Love alone is the fuel that drives our tired bodies on."                    
                                                  - Mark La Rosa, Super-8 Yearbook, Feb 1987.

A4. Knowing Me, Knowing You (1988, 6 mins)

Featuring: Bill Mousoulis (V/O)

An essay film about the failure of post-modernism.

"The thrust of this film - that the reflexivity of postmodernism, forseeing no future and believing in nothing, is a dead-end - is assembled in the film's central shot: an oval mirror on a brick wall reflecting another brick wall facing it - one dead-end reflecting another....... a philosophy that can only 'reflect' its own language can only end up returning to itself - and the mirror gives us the circularity in which all such discourses are obliged to frame themselves ...... the film is a symmetrical construction, the mirror-shot dividing it in the middle, with magazine iconography on either side and shots of a brick house and trees bracketing that; it begins and ends with pop-media noise ..... The wave that Bill gives in the mirror engulfs and erases the circle drawn by Hutak on his desolate beach."
                                                         - Mark C. Zenner, Super Eight, Sep 1988.

A5. Crazy Motherfucker (1989, 3 mins)

Featuring: Mark C. Zenner

A man walks the streets of Melbourne, which looks very New Yorkish. Set to NWA's "Straight Outta Compton".

"Mousoulis took me back to early high school, gave me that feeling of exultation after seeing those meat murdering 'Warriors'. A very different film, of course, but Mark C. 'the bullet' Zenner's Tisiphone roused the spirit of healthy ultra vires violence. The film reads like this: animosity cut fury cut inquietude cut disdain cut anger cut acerbity cut etc. A passion play of urban angst. Yes."        
                                             - Laki Sideris, Super Eight, Dec 1989.

"Wild."                                   - Andrew Frost, Filmnews, June 1990.

A6. Love (1991, 3 mins)

The light of love: a science fiction film set in Alphaville, 2015. Shot in Melbourne, 1991.

"Here Bill uses Mozart as a counterpoint to B&W, beautifully overexposed color, shots of streets, visual puns (Mobil/moon). There are no actors, no spoken words to clutter things up. Bill has often explored and reflected his world through character and dialogue. Here there are no such vehicles. This is how it should be. Reflective, moody, subjective and romantic."
                                                     - Steven Ball, Super Eight, March 1991.

QUOTE AT HEAD OF FILM: On love and the immortality of the soul: "The desire of love is not for immortality but for the eternal; and the eternal is not something that depends upon the survival of any individual soul, whether our own or another's. The eternal is something which can be realized in one single moment; something which completely destroys in us any desire for survival after death; something which reconciles us to existence considered in the light of love alone; something that does not assume anything at all about the universe, except that love exists."
                                                     - John Cowper Powys.

A7. Rich Woods '90-'95 (1995, 7 mins)

Featuring: Bill Mousoulis

Richmond = rich world, rich woods. 1990 to 1995. The sites which resonate with meaning and feeling for the film-maker, now leaving Richmond, heading north by northwest. First film of the "Place Trilogy".

"Rich Woods '90-'95 provides a particularly startling example of the acentricisation of points of view ..... It is infused with a sense of nostalgia, an obsessively framed mapping of places which, while interesting as explorations of place, hold vastly greater significance for the photographer. The film reaches a point where there is a stark radical shift in its point of view, where Bill appears in the shot. The seer turns the camera upon himself, the point of view becomes other than solipsism towards a kind of reflection without mirrors."
                                                   - Steven Ball, Super Eight, Aug 1995.

A8. Fit Waters '95-? (1995, 3 mins)

Set along Brunswick St., a fast cut-up of images, accompanied by Teenage Fanclub's "Radio". Third film of the "Place Trilogy".

A9. The Shadows (1996, 5 mins)

A bicycle seat. A roof. A car park. Light. Shadow. The aperture control. Piano. Synthesizer. Delay effects. A sci-fi/horror fantasy ... the shadows have landed.

A10. Winter (1998, 8 mins)

Featuring:  Rad Rudd, Mark C. Zenner, Nick Ostrovskis

The Writer prepares to shut off from the world;  The Lover accepts the rejection of his love;  The Cynic espouses the virtues of distance.  Winter is here.

Side B - Misses

B1. Doubt (1982, 8 mins)

Featuring: Bill Hatzistavros, George Simitsis, John Theodorou.

A high school student gets revenge for a perceived wrong. Bill's first (fiction) film, from November 1982, in only its second public screening.

B2. Fun Girl (1986, 4 mins)

Pictures of models from magazines, set to Koo de Tah's "Body Talk". A controversially feminist meta-narrative.

B3. The Green Door (1986, 5 mins)

Featuring: Bill Mousoulis, Monica Mousoulis.

Various tableaux of home life.

"A quite personal film, which bears some resemblance to Gillian Leahy's My Life Without Steve. The Green Door, however, has a simple eloquence and an authenticity the bigger film lacks."
                                                    - Anne-Marie Crawford, Super Eight, Dec 1986.

B4. Richmond Girl (1990, 6 mins)

Featuring: Richard Tuohy, George Goularas, Bill Mousoulis (and V/O).

A personal, diary film, about love, the cinema, faith, desire, affirmation.

B5. Makes Me Stronger (1996, 8 mins)

Featuring: Bill Mousoulis (and V/O)

A short fiction in the mode of a 'diary', a film-maker's thoughts and feelings regarding his failure to obtain funding for his films.

"A dark comedy with Bill Mousoulis as a whining effete film-maker who is trying to reconcile his feelings of envy for his more successful peers. Suffering funding knock-backs and personal rejection he grasps the nettle with insights like "oh well". Bitter that his great artistic vision "I am Rossellini and 70's TV" has not caught on, he is left to lament that he didn't really want to be famous anyway. Besides, failure Makes Me Stronger. A courageous and confronting comedy. Well I think it's a comedy."       
                                             - Sean Cousins, MIFF program notes, July 1996.

(Note - film pulled from its MIFF screening on account of this program note.)

B6. Green (1996, 3 mins)

Featuring: Bill Mousoulis (V/O).

Jarman was blue. Mousoulis is green.

B7. The Wild Bunch (1997, 2 mins)

A Marxist/feminist critique of capitalism and consumerism. Footage of moth being eaten by ants courtesy of Mark C. Zenner.

B8. Underground Sky (1998, 16 mins)

Featuring:   Eléni Lazaris, Trevor Rooney, Mark C. Zenner, Theo Giantsos, Bill Mousoulis, Fiona Villella (V/O).

In the winter of 1998, the earth was overrun by many millennium prophets, whilst the suburbanites lived their suburban lives.  Underground, artists and other vagabonds flourished, their activities illuminated by a dark and pure underground sky.

B9. The Circle Turns (2000, 7 mins)

Featuring:  Andrea Costi, Nick Ostrovskis

A young woman deals with her boyfriend leaving her.

B10. The Color of Murder (2002, 4 mins)

Featuring footage shot by Mark C. Zenner for an uncompleted film, set to The Boys Next Door's "The Hair Shirt". The most recent film by Bill, in its debut screening.