Be It True, or Be It Fals: Stephen Broomer Discusses "Tondal's Vision"

  • MUBI
Since the birth of the medium, films have ventured intrepidly into hell. From the moment Georges Méliès put Satan’s lair on screen in 1903’s The Damnation of Faust, all manner of filmmakers have wrangled with their own visions of the netherworld—from the minds behind myriad torturous horrors and screwball comedies to art-house behemoths such as Jean-Luc Godard, in Notre musique (2004). Canadian filmmaker Stephen Broomer’s entry into this century-old pantheon, Tondal’s Vision, is a tribute to one early cinematic journey into the underworld and to various other artistic katabasis while remaining a truly singular rendering. At once thrilling and terrifying, the film seems to recall that line in Milton’s Paradise Lost: “The mind is its own place, and in itself can make a heaven of hell, a hell of heaven…”The physical source material for Broomer’s vision is Giuseppe de Liguoro, Francesco Bertolini, and
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