Norman McLaren

So I never actually met Norman McLaren. But I did see some of the gear he used to make his films at a special McLaren retrospective and exhibition at the Cinémathèque Québécoise around 1966. That’ll have to be close enough. He died in 1987. Does anybody know about McLaren anymore? It seems like I grew up seeing his movies. At film clubs, as trailers when they showed real trailers and no bloody ads, on television when the CBC was worth owning a TV for, even in school. Where would you see McLaren films now? Does anyone under 40 know what the hell I’m talking about?

I just finished watching an amazing documentary on McLaren. Not only is this the first time I’ve witnessed in depth conversations with McLaren himself, it also included footage I’ve never seen before. I thought I’d seen every one of his films, some many times. Looks like I’d seen the tip of a very deep iceberg. I am in awe.

I don’t know – would he have been recognized worldwide as the genius he was if he lived and worked in the U.S.? Once in San Francisco I visited the Canadian consulate to ask for help organizing a screening of his work because no one I knew there had heard of him. They weren’t much help so it never happened.

I just want to go on record that I believe Norman McLaren was one of the greatest artists of the twentieth century and that Pas de Deux is the best movie ever made. Fuck Citizen Kane!

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One Response to “Norman McLaren”

  1. Geri Newell

    If you go the the NFB Mediatheque on St, Denis, you can watch all his films there. They also brought out a collection of his films years ago, which you can possible still buy from the shop there.


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