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Anatomies of the Image

English filmmaker Chris Petit’s work on image and sound falls under the increasingly rare category of rebellious elusiveness. A film critic for Time Out during the 1970s, he moved behind the camera (like one of the last of the Mohicans of the European New Wave) with the elliptical version of a road movie, à la Hellman, during the triumphant Thatcher years (Radio On, 1979), only to then push himself, with the support of Wenders’s Road Movies, towards a disquieting and ironic blend of ‘lesser’ genres such as the thriller and noir. (The same genres that, after having abandoned in his cinematic ‘fiction’, he developed as a writer in novels such as The Psalm Killer and Back from the Grave).