Title: The Velvet Underground and Nico
Director: Andy Warhol
16mm, black and white
Even ardent fans of the velvet underground will probably move uneasily in their chairs during this picture. The movie includes everything, except for a VU performance. The band IS there, and they are playing, but it is an incoherent jam session from hell rather then something familiar. Warhol accompanies the music with repeating focus shifts, lighting experiments, bizarre camera movements, etc., all of which combined create an hypnotic trance-like effect, not to be forgotten soon. Warhol also chooses to let only the diegtic sound from the amplifiers be heard, and thus whole sequences, such as the cops who arrive to stop the show on account of various complaints from neighbors, remain unheard and eluded to instead of crudely “shown”. This is a revolutionary experiment in rock videos, even in today’s standards.