Order and Disorder in Francis Alÿs’ Reel-Unreel

A film by Francis Alÿs will be included in the Station to Station moving image program.

Francis Alÿs joined forces with Afghani architect Ajmal Maiwandi and French film-maker Julien Delvaux to create 2011’s “Reel-Unreel.”

A depiction of two children engaged in a simple play, one boy unreels 35-mm film from a red spool that he steers with a stick, while the second rewinds the film left on the dusty streets back to his blue spool.

If The Red Balloon met Cinema Paradiso in an art house theater in Afghanistan, this might be the result. It’s calming, serene and yet, with it’s plastic bag strewn landscapes, helicopter sounds and burning trash, somehow menacing too.