Examiner Film Editor

A documentary on Seattle’s experimental performance group Aono Jikken Ensemble (AJE) will play the Port Townsend Film Festival this month.

“Jikken,” by filmmaker Doug Ing, shows through rehearsals and live performances how AJE created their soundtrack for the 1926 silent Japanese film, “A Page of Madness.” The documentary also features two film scholars who provide commentary about “A Page of Madness.”

By incorporating music, word and image, “Jikken” gives the audience a chance to fully experience the creative process.

Ing, who shot 40 hours of footage for what ultimately became a 25-minute film, said the documentary “allowed me to combine my interests in film history, film sound and music.”

AJE’s live performances, in May and October 2004, posed a unique challenge for Ing and his crew: filming in a darkened room. “What was ideal for the projection of celluloid was a nightmare for the video cameras,” said Ing. As it turned out, the illumination of the movie screen created nicely silhouetted shots of the musicians and their instruments.

Ing, who divides his time between Seattle, New York and Honolulu, made the documentary as a requirement for a Masters in Fine Arts degree from City College of New York. At the college’s MFA showcase last spring, “Jikken” was given awards for Best Documentary, Sound and Editing.

“Jikken,” part of a short film package called “Shorts 2: The Creative Process,” will screen at the Port Townsend Film Festival on Sept. 24 and 25.

For more information about “Jikken” or the Port Townsend Film Festival, visit

The Northwest Film Forum reprises one of the highlights of its earlier Ozu Film Festival by bringing back a screening of Ozu’s “Woman of Tokyo” (1933 silent) with pianist Wayne Horvitz once again performing an original live score. Oct. 2 at 8 p.m. The definitive hit of the Ozu festival was the inspired live accompaniment provided by the ever-inventive Aono Jikken Ensemble. Now they are back to provide an original music/sound score to Kaneto Shindo’s “The Naked Island (1960), a stark paen to the daily cycle of events on a rural isolated island. This should be real treat as Aono Jikken founder William Satake Blauvelt once confessed to me that this film is one of his favorites and one he has always dreamed of scoring. Oct. 27 – 30 at 8 p.m. 1515 – 12th. (206) 267-5380.


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