Berlin-born Hans Richter - Dadaist,
painter, film theorist and filmmaker - was for four decades one of the most
influential members of the cinematic avant-garde. Richter assembled some of
the century's liveliest artists as co-creators of Dreams That Money Can Buy,
his most ambitious attempt to bring the work of the European avant-garde to
a wider cinema audience. Among its admirers is film director David Lynch.
Joe, a young man down on his luck, discovers he has the power to create dreams, and sets up a business selling them to others. The 'dreams' he gives to his clients are the creations of Max Ernst, Fernand Léger, Man Ray, Marcel Duchamp, Alexander Calder and Richter himself, and the result is by turns playful, hypnotic, satirical, charming and nightmarish.
Theatrical Release: September 1947 - Venice Film Festival
DVD Review: BFI - Region 2 - PAL
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|Distribution||BFI Video - Region 2 - PAL|
Average Bitrate: 6.21 mb/s
PAL 720x576 25.00 f/s
NOTE: The Vertical axis represents the bits transferred per second. The Horizontal is the time in minutes.
|Audio||English (Dolby Digital 2.0)|
short films by Hans Richter: Rhythmus 21 (1921); Ghosts Before Breakfast
(1928) and Everyday (1929)
Dreams That Money Can Buy has a
Film Noir base and is divided into a bizarre pastiche of
seven segments - namely:
The DVD includes an exclusive alternative soundtrack by London-based Baroque pop band The Real Tuesday Weld, with narration by Brazilian chanteuse Cibelle and English alchemist David Piper. The band has previously performed this soundtrack live to accompany screenings of the film at the NFT in April 2005 and at Tate Modern in May 2006.
The image quality, for an experimental, avant garde, work seems appropriately weak in the area of production values but retains enough clarity on the DVD transfer to be watchable. It has optional English subtitles and some erstwhile supplements - 3 shorts by Richter, an interview with The Real Tuesday Weld and Cibelle on composing the soundtrack and the nicely put-together booklet.
Overall, the film(s) reminded me of Cocteau's work, but may, obviously, mean different things to different individuals. It certainly is curious and worthwhile for lovers of the Avant Garde movement.