Thursday, October 17, 1996

Millennial Dis-eases:

Divinity Gratis by Betzy Bromberg

Yerba Buena Center for the Arts

Betzy Bromberg is one of Los Angeles’ most accomplished experimental filmmakers, who doubles as a Hollywood special effects expert. Betzy’s films recall Chick Strand’s, combining lushly sensual sounds and images into complex portraits of people and societies. Her newest film, Divinity Gratis (1996, 59′), premiered recently at the Edinburgh Film Festival. A probing and meditative social critique, the film questions misuse of the environment, the decadence of sexual appetite, and our place in the cosmos. “Mankind rules this age, but like our Saurian ancestors we are doomed to extinction. Divinity Gratis explores our ultimately minor role within a treacherously vast and indifferent universe.” (Kirby White) Also, Ciao Bella (1978), “achieves a highly charged atmosphere of manic exhibitionism and sexual raunch” (J. Hoberman) and other early work.