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The Cinematic Art of Regurgitation: A Severed Cinema Interview with Gurcius Gewdner Print E-mail
Written by Richard Taylor   
Wednesday, 24 August 2016

 The Cinematic Art of Regurgitation: A Severed Cinema Interview with Gurcius Gewdner.

Wild, unbridled passion, vomit bags and gobs of shiny turds. What do they have in common? A kaleidoscope of artistic flair in which sanity has no place with its dull perspective and safe regarded territory. Brazilian cinema adventurer Gurcius Gewdner has made, edited, acted and so forth in a mass of insanity in his country, collaborated with many masterminds that share his same glorious vision, founded an independent company and has used his passion to carve a niche for himself and better yet made a living for himself upon his no compromise attitude. He has taken his inspirations from music and film and turned them into his own form of expression by making his own movies and learned in a hands on approach what it takes. I talked to him about his background, inspiration and current/future projects and also found out what makes this cinematic and artistic madman tick! Let the vomit bomb explode and the barf bags over floweth. No matter how you put it, everything all comes around full circle to bodily fluids in the end.

How did you get into film making?

 I did my first movie when I was13 years old and never stopped doing it since then. It began together, with my interest for music and performance art. We decided to play in a band, but I thought that musical lessons was very boring. So we created the band without having musical lessons, without knowing to play anything. I did the same with filmmaking -- instead of going to a film school, I decided to make a cheap and bad movie. Than later another one, and another one and another one. That's how I learn and how these things began to happen for me. Sometimes I also go to other filmmakers I admire, and ask to work with them. That's how I begin to work with the artists, musicians and filmmakers that I know.

What movies sparked your interest at an early age in underground film making and in the subversive/bizarre arts?

I had full access to all kinds of movies when I was a kid. My parents were always in the video store and this was the most fun in the world for me. Everyone in the family chose a tape or two and I always watched all the movies that everyone got. They didn't like horror movies, so usually I convinced them to let me get a horror movie and some different kind of movie. They thought that maybe always getting a "normal" movie together with a "strange" movie, things could be ok in my head... Well, I don't know if that was a good plan. For me it was the chance to see more movies!! As a child I loved biology and strange animals, so when I discovered monster movies I entered paradise. Growing up in the '80s and '90s I became in love with all the horror icons of the time -- mainstream action movies (Cannon Movies, Arnold Governator movies), science fiction monster movies and also the Muppets. The interest for music came together with me discovering punk bands, heavy metal, trash metal, experimental music and discovering the Herb Alpert, Ray Coniff and Burt Bachrach records of my father, among too many other things. With music and movies, I discovered fanzines and the underground scene, which was very exciting at the time in the whole country ('95-'96). I became a trade letter freak, and with those contacts I discovered all the filmmakers that didn't exist in VHS market in Brazil -- the underground and experimental filmmakers and artists from the '70s and '60s blew up my mind, along together with punk bands, and I decided to make my own movies, without any knowledge at all. Just for fun. Classical history.

 What was the first movie you ever made and how did it go? Was it life changing and made you want to make more or was it more of a learning process and did you get a bit discouraged?

It's a documentary about pollution, called Pollution of Oceans and Seas -- I was a kid and I didn't know anything about how a movie was made ( I don't know yet, it's always a new discovery). I did the shooting in sequence (with no editing) with the soundtrack playing together with the action. Influenced by Muppets and other TV shows from Brasil. We did the movie with dogs and chickens. People who saw it at the time gave me encouragment to make more movies, so I began a second one. I didn't have the equipment to edit, so I spent many years only filming, planning to make the editing for later. This was my film school. I also learned how to try to sell a movie with this one. We also tried to have a local TV Show, had a reunion with local TV executives. We where only kids and I remember the executives laughing, but at the same time, they said: make the pilot. We did, but they invented an excuse to not have a second meeting and unfortunately I lost the tape later. It was a series of 6 or 7 sketches between 30 segments and 4 minutes. In 2003 I began to make the editing of my movies, using equipment from friends or institutions and later buying my own. At that time, my dream wasn't to put my movies in festivals, or get money to make them, my only dream was to make them. Get a camera and equipment for editing and make my own movies with anything that I had my hands on. In 2004 I got all that and never stopped doing it. I don't know why I wanted to make movies, because I was always thinking on making them, hypnotized by my own delirium, my obsessive daydreaming.

Explain your relationship with other directors/producers from Brazil such as Peter Baiestorf (Zombio and Zombio 2).

Petter is a great friend and partner. I edited 95% of his movies since 2005 and sometimes I appear as a actor in his movies. It's always fun. We also planned the releases on DVD together and we share the same obsessive passion for crazy surrealistic anarchic hysterical filmmakers as Christoph Schlingensief, Koji Wakamatsu, Kuchar Brothers, Shuji Terayama, Dusan Makavejev, Nobuhiko Obayashi and Zulawski. We are the two morons that are always saying that these guys are the best and not too many people believe us. Petter is a eternal partner and a collaborator for life. Since 2005 I also have been doing small appearances on Fernando Rick movies as a actor and friend, and in the last years I also made a good filmography with legendary experimental and horror comedies director Ivan Cardoso, with more than 20 small movies put together in Orgy of the Devil and on the wonderful and not released yet Drops of Corman, a animated movie using several techniques of imagery intervention, from risking film with needles, to putting acid on old movies or using stickers dropped in the film. I think those 3 guys are the most routine relationships in underground cinema between 2005 and 2015, but I love to work with everybody. In the last few years I'm also always doing different things with another experimental director from Brasil: Christian Caselli, and also with Marcel Mars, the producer of Cleopatra II: Tyranie of Desire and main actor in Good Morning Carlos.

 You've worked practically every job in filmmaking based on looking at your bio on IMDb and the information you've sent me yourself. What is your favorite job working on films? Is there any one in particular?

There is a no-budget reality in the whole world I believe. You need to do everything and be surrounded by people prepared to help you with everything too. My favorite job is to direct and write, shoot with people working together and laughing. It's where I feel like the most happy person in the word, especially when things are working fine. I love to do the editing too, it's where I make money and I'm proud of my work, but directing a movie is more liberating, challenging and fun. And to appear as a actor on the movies of others is also a great fun too. On the dream sequence of Zombio 2, one of my technical functions was to use my body as a table support on the sex scene. It was a strange and great moment of technical realization for me. Doing the practical production of my own movies, it's a Hell to me, calling people, etc. But I always do that, because you need to fight for your film, you need to fight to get your vision exactly the way you want, but I always fell happy when I have people to help me on those practical crazy running. All my love to Ligia Marina, Garganta Silva, Marcel Mars and Hector B. Bragga, who helped me with that on Good Morning Carlos. Actually, at least more than 15 people need to be mentioned with love. I have very good friends and usually they don't say no when I say that I'm planning to make a new movie. Actually, when I say that I want to make a new movie, the first thing they do is to bring new ideas and new people.

 What part of Brazil were you born? How was your upbringing?

I was born in Brasilia, a place in the middle of the desert with no law at all. It's the worst, real and uglier than Mad Max or Turkey Shoot. A place where politicians, slave explorers, military bastards and religious shitholes create an empire of evil. Since the beginning of civilization on this chaotic fascist colony called Brasil, everything was fucked up. Today we have conservative criminal fascist and Rapist Christians running the country also, getting more and more power, creepy people that are more insane and sinister than the concept of evil itself, more pathetic and fascist than Donald Trump. His followers are more dangerous and disturbed than them. But I didn't grow up in there. I grow up in another conservative colony, in the South of Brasil, a Germanic city called Joinville. It rains all the time in there and fungus are a way of life in this town. To a VHS collector, this is not good, not good at all. But even in a industrial "work forever" Germanic town with rain for the whole existence they had one of the best video stores of the nineties in Brasil -- a huge videostore, with everything you can imagine, a real VHS paradise for me, that made my life full of happiness for many and many years, from my childhood until forever. I learned to speak English without study in English school because I used to see so many movies. I still watch one or two movies a day, but at that time I used to see 4 or 5 movies a day, specially when I needed to be studying something else. I had a good childhood, surrounded by chickens, VHS, mofo, small dogs and fruits, lots of fruits. My parents was always very nice to me and my father loved to cultivate fruits. When the doctor says to Carlos "You need to eat more fruits." I'm talking very serious. We all need to eat more fruits. Fruits are elixir of life. They can make you happy every time you bite one and feel his wonderful juices invading your body. On Pazucus II we have plans for some demented happenings on a fruit farm.

Your short film Good Morning Carlos is a great adventure, very daring and original, it's shot very well, the cinematography is beautiful. How did the idea for Good Morning Carlos begin?

 The stomach-ache dramas of Carlos is something that I always wanted to make since I was a kid. Vomiting movies, with more things than only vomit coming from the mouth. When I was a kid, I always dreamed with this man vomiting shit and becoming a turd monster himself. So it's something that was in my heart since always. The chance to make the movie was a invitation for a full length feature called Uptake Fear, where they invited me to make 15 minutes, with total liberty to write and only following this condition: it needs to be a movie about "fears of the contemporary man" and my relation with the city chosen for the movie (Island of Florianópolis). The producers get some money in a plastic arts funding project, not in a funding exactly for movies, but for "art", this is one of the reasons that they called me instead of another genre director: they wanted an arthouse movie mixed with horror. So they gave full artist liberty to make anything I wanted, without anyone controlling me. With that in my hand I wrote the full script for Pazucus, grabed the money they give me, some money on my own and some money with Carlos (Marcel Mars) and from several members of the staff too. We did the shootings in 15 days and only at the editing room I discovered what was going to be Good Morning Carlos. My inspirations for the movie are very specific: it's a love letter specially to Lucio Fulci and Andrej Zulawski. The first five minutes are a declaration of my total passion for Fulci in Cat in the Brain, then we enter at two of my favorite vomit movies: Zulawski's Possession and Pinochio 964. Before I ever began writing the movie the only certain thing that I was sure of making was a long vomiting scene in a corridor. Later we enter the forest. In there I declare my love and inspiration for movies as The Lair and Worm and Baba Yaga, and also to Brazilian artists as Sara Panamby and Rodrigo Braga. The island of Florianopolis is a mystical place, surrounded by legends of witches, some of them still hidden in the woods practicing extreme rituals with vomiting and stealing little children for sacrifice. We had the most beautifully crazier, stunning, scary and wonderful witch from the island, played by Ligia Marina. It's a beginning of a ritual of monster exorcism, that you will see in Pazucus: Island of Vomit and Despair. The name Carlos is a homage to one of the most intelligent and loved directors from Brasil (and a friend): the legendary Carlos Reichenbach, who was a great fan of Cat in the Brain and a cinephile full of passion. Of course some things in Carlos are also inspired in Cronenberg's Shivers too. The movie also is a homage to From Here to Eternity. We recreated the kiss scene with two filmmakers as actors performing this intense kiss: Pomba Claudia Borba and Magnumm Borinni. The cinematography is made by genius Flavio C Von Sperling -- to work with him was more fun than watching Pink Flamingos.


 Besides artistry in movies, you are also an artist in other areas. You personally do hand drawn vomit bags as promotion for Good Morning Carlos which I think is a brilliant idea. When you release the follow up Pazucus, what gimmick's will you include with that one? I'm excited to see, perhaps a do-it-yourself colostomy bag!?

A colostomy bag its a marvellous idea!! Well, probably we will continue with the vomit bags, different vomit bags and well, Pazucus has lots of good options of gimmicks to follow. Its a monster movie, with more turds and vomiting. I'm excited about selling personalized turds to promote the movie and the exhibitions, and probably for the releasing on DVD too. Vomit bags are a cinematic tradition, something that I always love. It's the same thing that I love most in airplanes trips! I love the vomit bags for Pink Flamingos, Airplane I and II, Blood Feast, Cannibal Ferox and so many other classics of cinema who use it. It was my chance to make part in this vomit history and maybe try to inspire more Brazilian directors to make vomit bags for their own movies. I don't understand why barf bags are not an essential thing in almost every Brazilian movie made here since the beginning of times, for good and bad reasons. Vomit bags for the wonderful movies: the vomit of joy, the ritualistic vomit. And vomit bags for shitty movies: the vomit of sadness, the heartbreak vomit. Barf bags are treasures, flags of happiness and fun.

Lets talk about Pazucus. When will it be released? Does it go further with The Good Morning Carlos story?

Yes. It shows some things about the ways that lead Carlos into the woods. It also reveals more details about the doctor who wants to kill him, his journey to find Carlos, his relationship with other patients, etcetera. The Fulci delirium continues. I also put more references in my love letters to the cinematic world. There is a celebration of Ozploitation movies and oldest Roger Corman movies. More specifically to Creature from the Haunted Sea and Long Weekend, the Australian movie from 1978. Some scenes are little remakes from those movies. Other scenes are distorted recreations mixed with more things that are always mixed in my mind. It's a hysterical version of Long Weekend, with Corman, Fulci and other lovable guests. They are all invited to this Humanoids from the Deep low budget party!! It's a movie about apocalypse, witches, party, paranoia, vomiting, nature menace, pollution and prophetical detective monsters. I'm editing the movie right now. The first cut needs to be ready in October. The movie probably begins to take festivals between November and January. In October I can tell you this better. I want to make a crowd funding campaign pre-selling the DVD's, probably after the first exhibitions in festivals. My plan is to make a nice DVD release, prepare nice graphic materials and to save some money for post production for my next feature length: Viatti Arrabbiatti.

 What other future projects are you currently working on? Which ones are you most excited for?

After finishing Pazucus, my dream its to finish Viatti Arrabbiatti, my gangster Giallo fairytale, a movie that I've been doing since 2010, stopped in 2011, got involved in other movies and projects and back to it in 2014/2015. The movie is done, but I need money for post production. Same history of Pazucus, I hope to solve with even better conditions than I have right now to finish my vomiting monster movie. There's also Cleopatra II: Tiranie of Desire, the Filmaralho production handle by Marcel Mars and Geni Granado. There's some other projects to come. I talk a little about them at the graphics materials of Carlos, a science fiction movie with slave trades, a war movie, the sequence of Pazucus and A Killing (the Italian/Turkish super-villain) movie. But I need the money and producers for each one of these projects still. It's a long way. I hope Pazucus help me to make this whole process faster.

You also run the company Bulhorgia Productions which releases a lot of movies/t-shirts etc. The shirts are great quality and seem to have your original artwork? Tell us about the company.

It's me. It's all that I do as a filmmaker, musician, my drawnings, everything. It's all my movies and the movies made it in collaboration with Petter Baiestorf in partnership with Canibal Filmes. It's the way we find to distribute and produce our own movies, in our deranged and passionate way, with our difficulties and problems of low budget. We are late with our releases because there are too much things to do in so little time and time is always running fast. But we will keep doing these movies and releases, using everything we have in our hands. Several t-shirts are made with my own personal artworks, but I also work with t-shirts of classic movies, with their classical posters. I'm not very smart because I only work with movies that I like, but it is the way that I want to make things. Bulhorgia Produções began as a joke, together with the movies and now is treated like a Company, a symbol of our own quality and personal touch to Brazilian cinema. That makes me really happy. I want to have hundreds of people working and making crazy movies with me. For love, for fun and to celebrate my ideals of what is cinema and art for me. What I have in my heart to release to the world.

 What are some of the movies you like and are watching right now? Who is your favorite director from years past and who is your favorite current director?

I'm obsessed again with Blake Edwards, Joe dante, Zulawski and John waters at the moment. Also with Ozploitation, Sharksploitations and Turkish genre movies from the sixties, seventies and eighties. All my love to Cem Kaya and his wonderful documentary about Turkish pop cinema: Remake, Remix, Rip-off! I want to make Barbabus: O Bem Dotado das Galaxias (a.k.a. Slave Trades in Space)" with the same feeling of movies like The Man Who Saved the World (1982). I love the Turkish movies so much. I don't know my favorite director, it's a enormous list. Everyday I have a favorite director. Today it's Terry Gilliam or The Kuchar Brothers. Tomorrow probably will be Russ Meyer or Julio Bressane, I don't know. But probably my favorite movie from all time, since the first time I saw it is Sweet Movie from Dusan Makavejev.

What is the underground horror and art scene like in Brazil? Do you get a lot of local support? I know in Canada it is very lame. Where I live you can't even wear a horror shirt outside your house and people think you are a weirdo unless its mainstream stuff.

 I always liked the underground scene here in Brasil. The genre movie makers and experimental filmmakers from the past decades and everything that appear in the nineties, mixed with underground music. Movies and underground music walked together for some time in here. It's where I was born and create myself. Today things are becoming a little different, but is nice too. The horror genre it's becoming more and more respected, not only in the underground, but with bigger audiences too. Lots of talented horror directors are appearing and getting good opportunities to make great movies. It's still a very small group, a small scene, but not as small as people thought a few years ago. There's always some interesting movies being made in experimental cinema too, doing well at the festivals around the world and in art galleries. And some legendary masters of cinema like Julio Bressane and José Mojica (Coffin Joe) are still making movies and getting international attention. My movies are always lost between the art scene and horror underground, but it's always a strange element in there, and I like that. Brasil is a conservative, extremely religious, male bullshitter chauvinist, homophobic and racist country, dominated by television. Sometimes even horror fans and punks/metalheads can be conservative and full of preconception, so you will be a weirdo in many levels of society. But it's possible to find weirdos that share your ideas of what is a better and crazier world, and those ones in the audience who will support you. The campaign to bring me to the Housecore festival in texas was fully supported by Brazilian friends and fans, so yeah, we have some support. I'm sure that you find those in Canada too. Actually I want to find these kinds of lovable creeps, incredible persons like you, in the whole world and get them to help me to make more movies, with bigger support and the help and love of collaborator fans and friends.

Can you live off your movies and your company or do you have other jobs? I know a lot of the independent horror/gore directors have such a passion for their craft but can't make ends meet with it alone. I think this is sad considering the money that is being made from the purchase of DVD's/Blu-Rays and VHS tapes by collectors.

All my life, I lived doing things that I like. I never had a shitty job. This is a conquest in a country who wants to kill his own culture all the time. But it's difficult, that doesn't mean that I work with cinema all the time. I sell t-shirts, I already handed a store of records, skateboard parts, clothes, and I work editing, but even with editing I never worked doing publicity or marriages, maybe my curriculum is a bit scary to them, because in moments of weakness I already tried to work with that, but my own movies saved me. All that means that I don't make too much money, but I'm happy. This attention we get outside Brasil, it's very important to us, you guys still buy DVD's and merchandise from your favorite films, people don't do that anymore in Brasil, only a few crazy collectors. The limited edition of Good Morning Carlos for example, with the barf bag and the drawings, I sold only a few copies here in Brasil, and lots outside the country, especially Finland, England, USA, Canada and Germany. This makes me think about a pre-selling campaign for my next movie, if I will do this directly as a kickstarter campaign or find a way to make two campaigns at the same time, one for Brasil and another for outside.

Any helpful advice for up-and-coming low budget directors looking to make a name for themselves?

 Do it with your heart, listen only to your heart at the moment you're making your film. Don't bother with bad reviews, they are always good for you, be thankful with the good reviews and love the bad reviews. Be surrounded with people who like you and respect your dreams, stay away from people who are the opposite or bastards who want to control your dreams or put you down. Don't be afraid to commit errors, errors are life and they make you grow happy if you learn be thankful for them. Try to not become a grudge asshole as the years go by too. People are not your enemies, especially new filmmakers. They are your friends and can help to see your old values in different ways again. Make anarchic movies, with no rules and regulations of making!! Do it for love and things will happen and come -- who knows, maybe even money. And also: Fulci Lives!

Out of curiosity, what was used for all the different vomit in Good Morning Carlos? We saw a colorful rainbow of regurgitation and what was used for the turds Carlos was licking?

The vomiting liquids are an edible recipe. If you saw some of my drawings or other movies, you will realize that I like colors, colors and chaos everywhere. So, for the composition of the colors I went on a food products shop for children's parties and bought all the food dye colors available. It is a mixture in a pan with sweet manioc flour, dye and water. We also use milk, which we use in white vomit and in one of the most beautiful vomiting colors: green Re-Animator style. Overall this vomiting recipe is quite nice and lasts all day, but mixing with milk does not. The milk gets rotten in a few hours and the smell is the worst in the world. Marcel almost threw up for real every time we used the vomit with rotten milk. That's why there's a scene where you can see a waterfall of vomit falling on him. We decided to use the milk on his body instead of making him put that rotten liquid in his mouth. It's a waterfall of rotten milk. His clothes looked and smell like a disgusting real Hell after the milk day. For the turds, Alexandre Brunoro prepared them at home. I'm not really sure of what's is in there -- it's a secret recipe. I try not to think too much about this detail.

Thank you for your time. You are a brilliant and exciting filmmaker with real passion for the craft. I look forward to seeing more work from you. Everyone should contact Bulhorgia Productions and order a copy of Good Morning Carlos with their custom vomit bag and a custom shirt because they are awesome high quality. Contact Gurcius on Facebook or look for Bulhorgia Productions online.






































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