Digressions

I had a dream or a series of dreams about a series of films. The dream involved watching the films but also researching them using IMBD and other online sources to try to understand the digressive style by which they were held together.

The first of these films seems to present the common situation: a top floor flat that was co-owned by a cooperative, whose usage of the place is based upon segueing in and out of the single bedroom flat. Their use of the space is like Tetris blocks, their lives interlocked with the space without being part of each others story.

Initially there was a gay man using the space while he was waiting for his partner, and then there were three women, a single mother with a child, and so on. The co-ownership wasn’t economic in any way: it didn’t seem to require shares or rents, merely a request to use the space. And no-one is ever turned down.

There is a full meeting of the cooperative, which is vast, and questions are raised about the suitability of the flat: would it have been better if it wasn’t on the top floor, since the throughput of residents might disturb the residents of the lower floors? Nothing conclusive comes out of the meeting. On a bus heading to the station, the current character passes by a large warehouse, commenting to camera that perhaps this would be a better location for the cooperative.

Later films are less directly concerned with the co-owned flat. The connexion would only be established briefly within the film, through a character staying in the bedroom overnight, or perhaps merely stopping by to use the kettle or to hoover the living room carpet. It’s possible that I was watching the films and researching them online while I was staying at the flat.

The last film was a cold war drama, although it wasn’t actually dramatic; all of the films are characterised by a gentle, humorous and matter of fact tone. The protagonist was decommissioning nuclear weapon systems, slowly and without any apparent conflict. He stays at the flat one night while he’s in town. Whether we can conclude that there is some larger social and utopian project behind the cooperative flat in these films is left open for the dreamer’s interpretation.