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Pain Is…

Stephen Dwoskin

UK, 1997
80 minutes, Colour, Opt.
Available formats: 16mm / DVD / Digibeta tape / SD Digital file

‘A fascinating companion piece to David Cronenberg’s Crash or Kirby Dick’s Sick, Pain Is… combines interviews, archival footage and Dwoskin’s thoughtful voice-over to arrive at a scrupulous anatomy of pain (encompassing disease, dental work and sadomasochism). The interviews range from those who suffer from chronic pain to those who find pleasure in wilfully inflicting pain. Dwoskin doesn’t belabour the distinction, choosing instead to search for underlying meanings. Without getting into tortured semiotics, he examines the language of pain and wonders, amongst other things, if it is possible “to make an image of pain”‘. – Dennis Lim