The Practice of Love
Judith is journalist. She investigates an unsolved fatal accident in a Viennese subway station and comes accross an international gun running organization. Her affair with Dr. Fischoff, a physician, is not doing well and Judith sleeps badly and has terrible nightmares. She has another friend, Alfons Schlögel, an industrialist, who is also involved in the gun running affair. Slowly, Judith gets an idea of what is happening.
Video control in subway stations and in street traffic, tapes and cameras are very important for the structure of the film. Mediocrity, hypocrisy and violence are the film´s main themes. Valie Export deals with them on private, social and media levels, adhering to the techniques of video avant-garde.
The Practice of Love could be termed a feminist thriller about a woman investigator who uncovers a murder conspiracy, and who is in the end thwarted by a combination of governmental and private power. The film could also be seen as an essay about the impossibility of freeing oneself from the tangle of electronically and socially determined gazes and the insufficiency of language in general. Seeing it as a comedy about perception would also be possible, or even a lesson about the construction of time and space in film images. But all these possibilities (like in a “good” mainstream film) do not add up to a mythical whole with a clear separation of text and subtext, plot and subplot; it maintains its contradictory and fragmentary nature, clearly showing the “experimental” as a space where experience is possible.
Die Praxis der Liebe
1984 - 1985