ACIDEMIC Journal of Film and Media

Drunkards of Borneo (1931/2008)
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By Erich Kuersten
9 minutes

American surrealist Joseph Cornell created the first video "remix", ROSE HOBART, in 1936; a newsreel solar eclipse edited with a 1931 jungle romantic action film, EAST OF BORNEO, Cornell tinted it all blue and scored it to a record of old Hawaiian lullabies. Art was born again.

I first saw EAST OF BORNEO at a showing in the Whitney during an Edward Hopper & Friends retrospective in 1994. I didn't get the whole ROSE HOBART thing then, but I sure loved the original, and it took me a good decade to find it on DVD (at Sinister Cinema).

You don't need Cornell to remaster BORNEO to appreciate its outsider poetry brilliance. You can glean lots of weird juicy metatextual poetry off it, and if you're feeling metatextual yourself, join the conga line and remix Borneo in your own fashion. To wit, I present my own slant, DRUNKARDS OF BORNEO!

Below, please check out a segment of Cornell's original 1931 mash-up, ROSE HOBART:

c. 2007 Acidemic

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