1997. Directed by Raoul Servais. Music by Bo Spaenc. Special thanks to Raoul Servais. 8 min.
1978. Belgium. Directed by Raoul Servais. With Will Spoor, Frans Walter Zeper, Sjoert Schwibethuis. Music by Lucien Goethals. Special thanks to Raoul Servais. 9 min.
1973. Belgium. Written and directed by Raoul Servais. Music by Lucien Goethals. Special thanks to Raoul Servais. 9 min.
In celebration of the MoMA exhibition Magritte: The Mystery of the Ordinary, 1926–1938, Nicola Mazzanti, director of the Royal Film Archive of Belgium, has curated a program of Surrealist masterworks from their collection. Belgian cinema experienced a renaissance in the late 1920s with the emergence of filmmakers who, together with artists like René Magritte and Paul Delvaux, created a distinctive form of Surrealism—one that inscribed, in Ernst Moerman's words, “a world where nothing is impossible, and where a miracle is the shortest route from uncertainty to mystery.” Mazzanti’s program traces this radical and subversive tradition from early experiments by d’Ursel, Dekeukelaire, and Storck—strange narratives in which desire and death are conjoined—to the award-winning animation of Raoul Servais in the second half of the 20th century, including Harpya, the film for which he won the Palme d’Or at Cannes. Magritte, who held sway over these experimental filmmakers, is represented by one of the best documentaries about his work, filmed by Luc de Heusch—who, together with Storck, was key to the development of Belgian documentary cinema. All films preserved by the Royal Film Archive of Belgium.