Synopsis by Aubry Anne D'Arminio
Martin Scorsese's experimental short, The Big Shave, materialized during one of the director's harrowing bouts with depression -- a time when he had trouble shaving. An anonymous young man (Peter Bernuth) enters a pristine white bathroom and begins shaving to the tune of Bunny Berigan's 1939 recording of "I Can't Get Started." The man shaves slowly and methodically, stoically piercing through his skin and bloodying his surroundings. Shot on ten rolls of Afga color film donated by the Palais des Beaux Arts in Brussels, The Big Shave was originally conceived for the weeklong anti-Vietnam protest "The Angry Arts Against the War." The man's self-destructive obsessive behavior stands as a metaphor for the United States' involvement in the conflict. The six-minute picture premiered instead at Jacques Ledox's 1968 Festival of Experimental Cinema in Belgium, where it won Le Prix de L'Age d'Or. Beware; it is not for the faint hearted!