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In the Cinéma Club of Sean Price Williams

Sean Price Williams is an American cinematographer and a constant figure in New York’s independent cinema in recent years. He is one of the cinematographers of the new generation who will always choose film over digital if the choice is given to him. His contributions to the beautiful looks of films by some of the most interesting new directors working in the city are remarkable. Sean’s recent credits include Josh & Benny Safdie’s Heaven Knows What (2014) and Good Time (2017), all of Alex Ross Perry’s films (Impolex, Listen Up Philip, Queen of Earth and Golden Exits), Albert Maysles’ last documentary Iris (2014), Robert Greene’s Kate Plays Christine (2016) and Nathan Silver’s Thirst Street (2017).

 

This great cinephile sent us a list of five films that inspired a movie on the beach. Le Cinéma Club presented his unseen film Sean’s Beach, a short shot on 16 mm in 2004.

GRADUATE FIRST, Maurice Pialat, 1978

Pialat's liberated play with time is perfectly suited to the disrespect that youth shows to the passage of time. I am still adolescent in my refusal to recognize that time flies.

SUMMER LOVERS, Randal Kleiser, 1982

The summer I wish I could have ever had and never will. The completely predictable heartbreak in the film is the only element of relatability.

THE SHARK HUNTER, Enzo G. Castellari, 1979

The appearance of the sea knight in my beach movie was partly styled on Franco Nero in this film that is mostly forgettable. A heroic performance by Nero shows no end of energy and commitment. The only way I have seen the film is on VHS which, when transferred from the film to the video source, is out of order. Two reels were switched. A character comes back from the dead! Amazing.

JOURNEY BENEATH THE DESERT; Edgar G. Ulmer, Frank Borzage, Giuseppe Masini; 1961

A very boring film. I have always had a pulsing interest in Atlantis and all interpretations. This film decided that Atlantis is in some caves under the desert. Such a deliberate betrayal to any imagination of the myth is of course inspirational.

IMMORAL TALES, Walerian Borowczyk, 1973

The bible for visual storytelling for me. The first sketch freely jumps between points of view that forfeits logic for movement. Allows the viewer the perfect opportunity to entirely inhabit the role of voyeur. Content plays just for our most prurient sensors.