Are the words uttered by models-cum-actors Hameline, Sohyun Jung and Aida Blue in Harley Weir's A.P.C. film a Lettrist poem or random musings?
The film opens with a shot of the legs and feet of a woman dressed in a checked, below-the-knee skirt with heeled loafers and a red filter to add depth. Then, a pair of tan cowboy boots clicks its soles together. Paul Hameline appears, clad in a polka-dotted navy shirt and grey slacks, leaning against a wall in an awkward pose. Next comes Sohyun Jung, debuting in a monochromatic shot a red corduroy jacket against a rouge background, stroking the crimson Anthurium flower against her cheek. Cut to a close-up shot of Jung wearing a shirt comprised of floral print, whistling before Aida Blue snaps a twig in an oxblood trench and Jung kisses a flat surface. Finally, Hameline utters, “Le lapin,” French for “The rabbit.”
Directed by Harley Weir, the film showcases the models-cum-actors Hameline, Jung and Blue wearing garments from A.P.C.’s fall 2018 collection. After Hameline’s first line, random sentences come from the models mouths with subtitles accompanying them. Jung speaks in Korean, saying, “There are no walls around it,” followed by Hameline announcing in French, “Feet down on a silver carpet.”
The origin of the phrases is unclear; Are the models-turned-actors simply responding to Weir’s questions, or is the director attempting to trigger a designated response? Is it a poem influenced by the era of Lettrism, the avant-garde movement founded in 1940s France by Romanian immigrant Isidore Isou? Or is it abstract video art that showcases the A.P.C. Fall 2018 collection? That’s up to the viewer to decide.