Klark Ešton Smit je jedan od velikana fantastične književnosti: pisao je osobeni, visokopoetizovani spoj fantazije i horora, ali i brojne priče čiste strave. Lavkraft mu se s pravom divio, i bili su u intenzivnoj, bogatoj, veoma inspirativnoj prepisci; po mnogo čemu bio mu je po nazorima najbliskiji, najsrodniji od svih dopisnika (uzgred, iako su se 15 godina dopisivali, nikad se nisu naživo sreli).
Neću sad i ovde nadugačko o Smitu – čitaćete o njemu u mom pogovoru izboru njegovih najboljih horor priča, uskoro, kod Orfelina. Do tada, želim da vam skrenem pažnju na odličan dokumentarac o ovom piscu koji je ovih dana postao gledljiv: možete ga pogledati na Amazon Prime ili na Vimeo on demand, ili kupiti DVD direktno od producenta i distributera, Hippocampus Press.
Na Rue Morgue sajtu je izašao moj prikaz ovog dokumentarca, a sada ekskluzivno ovde na blogu obznanjujem dužu verziju tog teksta, koji je za RM morao da bude skraćen. Ovde je to nešto sočnije. Čitajte prikaz, i gledajte film prvom prilikom... a Smit uskoro stiže i na srpski, posle predugog čekanja...
Evo i trejlera koji vam daje bolju sliku o filmu, OVDE.
Clark Ashton Smith: The Emperor of Dreams
Director: Darin Coelho Spring
It's strange and sad that such a seminal figure of American fantastic prose such as Clark Ashton Smith (1893–1961), the visionary and in many ways pioneering writer of fantasy, horror and SF, has not been a subject of a feature-length documentary – until now. The film devoted to his work’s significance and influence had its world premiere at this year’s H.P. Lovecraft Film Festival, which incorporated a “125 Years of Clark Ashton Smith” theme with some of its panels.
Crowd-funded and very low budgeted, but rarely showing it (mostly in the lighting department), this is clearly a labour of love not only of its makers but also participants. Chief among them, in more ways than one, is the recently departed titan of fantastic fiction, Harlan Ellison in his last appearance on video. It is a real joy to see this “curmudgeon” literally gush his enthusiasm for Smith, saying things like: “To read CAS is to be washed over by a tsunami... Just a page by CAS is better than an entire book by most writers.” This great craftsman also admits his debt to “The Bard of Auburn”: “Reading him aloud taught me how to put accent, emphasis, meaning and order.”
The film also features Smith scholar and poet, Donald Sidney-Fryer, the film's tour guide and commentator on the life and work of CAS, Lovecraft and Smith scholar S.T. Joshi who talks about the Lovecraft and Smith correspondence, mutual influence and the golden era of Weird Tales, when these two were among this pulp magazine’s major stars. You can also see noted Smith editor Ron Hilger and Smith's biographer Scott Connors, writer Cody Goodfellow and, on the more colourful end of the spectrum, Charles Schneider, poet, actor and magician, Wilum Pugmire, “The Queen of Eldritch Horror”, and actor Nick Savino as Clark Ashton Smith.
Clocking at 110 minutes, the film is an exhaustive (but not exhausting!) overview of this mysterious, reclusive and complex man’s life and works, including his poetry, read by some of the participants, plus we get to hear a rare recording of the voice of CAS reading „High Surf“. We also see samples of his original artwork and strange, creepy statuettes of otherworldly gods and demons, covers of his books, rare photographs and shots from the locations relevant to his life. There are brief excerpts from his only two adaptations, Return of the Sorcerer, an episode of Rod Serling's Night Gallery, with Vincent Price, and The Mother of Toads (from The Theatre Bizarre anthology) by Richard Stanley, who suggests that perhaps animation is a more proper medium to convey Smith’s writings’ sheer wildness.
After some special screenings, the DVD and BluRay of the film are available from Hippocampus Press (who produced it), plus it’s available for streaming via Amazon Prime Video and Vimeo. The discs include a few deleted scenes, such as Leeman Kessler as H.P. Lovecraft speaking about CAS and videos of CAS poems being read by modern acolytes.
The film is streaming on demand here:
Physical media is currently available only from Hippocampus Press:
DVD - $15.00
BluRay - $20.00
BluRay - $20.00
A kad sam već kod Smita i Lavkrafta, aposlutno neprocenjivo vredna i dobra knjižurina koju morate imate jeste takođe u izdanju Hipokampus presa:
Dawnward Spire, Lonely Hill: The Letters of H. P. Lovecraft and Clark Ashton Smith. Tvrd povez, 800 strana većeg formata, Džoši priredio i sredio i predgovorio i apendiksima opremio... Divota! Znam da ste već čitali moj prikaz ove knjige u Rue Morgue magazinu, ali ipak podsećam onu šačicu koja je taj tekst propustila: ovo je MUST HAVE prvog reda. Mislim, knjiga, ne moj prikaz.