Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
Not Endorsed by Uncle Milton.
Z. Stiegler | Iowa City, IA | 08/23/2004
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Elsewhere, I've heard some complain that the material presented on Ant Farm Video has lost relevance over the years. While certainly, one must keep the context of these pieces in mind, to label them as irrelevant is quite harsh, and in my opinion, untrue.
Some of the material is uninteresting and tedious to watch. This is most true of "Inflatables Illustrated," a 21-minute tutorial on how to make inflatables from household items. The technique is interesting, but to present it at such length was unnecessary. Likewise, "Ant Farm's Dirty Dishes" amounts to nothing more than the Ant Farm testing out film equipment with some rather uninteresting skits and dialogue. Lastly, "World's Longest Bridge" is a real-time (24 minute) film of the Ant Farm -you guessed it- crossing the World's Longest Bridge. A bit of an endurance test, to be sure, reminiscent of some of Andy Warhol's films.
But, the disc also contains some very interesting material as well.
The main attraction is perhaps Ant Farm's most memorable stunt, "Media Burn." While much of the material in this piece is certainly dated, the actual image is still rather impressive. This piece also includes opitional commentary, which provides a great deal of insight to the project, as well as it's lasting impact.
Moving right along, the "Cadillac Ranch" piece integrates footage from the inception of the Ranch with the 20th anniversary celebration in 1994. Also included as one of the hidden films is a CBS news clip from the 1970s on Cadillac Ranch (this can be accessed from the "Info" section under Cadillac Ranch: On the second page, use your up key to highlight 'Cadillac Ranch' in the text).
Slightly less interesting, but still amusing is "Time Capsule 1972-1984. In 1972, Ant Farm decided to create a time capsule to be opened in 1984. For whatever reason, it remained unopened until 2000. The piece integrates footage of the creation and opening of the time capsule.
"Off-Air Australia" collects footage from Ant Farm's 1976 tour of the continent. Various newsclips from Australian television are presented. It's especially interesting to see how people react to the Ant Farm and their work. The centerpiece of "Off-Air Australia" is CARmen: The Auto Opera, which must be seen to be believed.
Two more hidden films are located in the "About Ant Farm" section. The first is accessed on the second page, by using your up arrow to highlight "Johnny Romeo at Yale," a short and abstract performance piece. The other is on the third page, and accessed by highlighting "House of the Century." This short takes the viewer into the house designed by Ant Farm, which won them an architecture award.
Sadly absent from this release is one of the collective's most notorious works, "The Eternal Frame." Why this was not included is beyond me, as it is quite compelling, not to mention my first exposure to Ant Farm. Perhaps it will pop up in the future.
Overall, this release is not for the casual bystander. If you are unfamiliar with Ant Farm's work, I would suggest a rental. Fans of their various events, films and stunts, however, will likely find the release rather enjoyable.