Variations on a scene

Italian video essay maker and architect Davide Rapp has carved out a niche for himself with his spatial reinterpretations of films. He used this technique to investigate several Buster Keaton films: you should watch his videos The Elevator and Secret Gateways.


In another creative and playful video essay, created for NECSUS, Rapp offers up five variations on a Mario Bava scene. He again spatially rearranges a sequence, this time from the Italian Gothic horror film Kill, Baby… Kill! (1966). The original scene is staged and cut to be disorienting, with a man running through a series of identical rooms in pursuit of himself. How to convey the weirdness and bewildering effect of Bava’s directorial choices? The precise workings can be hard to articulate in words, so Rapp chooses a visual approach. He consecutively turns the shots in the original scene into a film strip, a phenakistoscope, a Möbius strip, a palimpsest… Each variation suggests, in its own way, an aspect of the discomfort the original scene evokes.