Tom | Chicago Reader

Tom

Canadian Mike Hoolboom's 2001 portrait of New Yorker Tom Chomont, an avant-garde filmmaker since the 60s whose now-emaciated face testifies to his struggle against AIDS. Its loosely associative, experimental style can seem obscure at times but also offers considerable rewards. Interweaving images of his subject today with fragments of porn, home movies, Hollywood films, and Chomont's own work, Hoolboom makes some provocative connections. He heroicizes the struggle of independent artists, intercutting Chomont at his editing table with a skyscraper under construction and an automobile assembly line. Chomont's account of his older brother's death from AIDS becomes a way of contemplating his own, inflecting the sea of images that floats around him. Hoolboom's style complements Chomont's explanation that his own films mime the patterns of memory. 75 min.

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