" P r e m o n i t i o n "

1995, 9 min, black and white, sound
Directed,  Filmed  and  Edited by Dominic Angerame;
Sound Design  by  Amy  Leigh Hunter;
Music by Ray Guillet and Kevin Barnard;
Vocals by Barbara Jaspersen.

The San Francisco Embarcadero Freeway comes to life in this elegy for modernity. The Freeway was deemed a triumph of engineering, a monument for human inventiveness. With the 1989 earthquake, however, the freeway was severely damaged and with it all the industrial-technological promises it held. Premonition shows the situation before the crisis, a deceptive moment of industrial harmony.

"And when the illusion disappears, that is to say when we see the being or  fact as it really exists outside ourselves, we experience a strange feeling,  complicated half with regret for the vanquished phantom, half with agreeable  surprise for the novelty, for the actual fact."—Charles Baudelaire

"There’s  an  exquisite despair and a dooming ambiguity suspended  in  the  cool morning  clarity  of Dominic Angerame’s new film, Premonition.  It’s  short  and bittersweet, like a prelude by Debussy, and promises a broad integration of  the aesthetic  elements  of his work, now full-fledged and ascendant. But  with  the widening  view and depth of field and new heights, there’s also a  painful  consciousness  of the vanity of all things human and of their  transience...Trans fixed if not much further along the road, we feel like those wide-eyed and well- intended Akkadian  stargazers  teetering on the edge of a  vast  new  knowledge hovering overs...revealing...revealing...what?

"Premonition,  despite its sadness, does not judge modernity and its  Gargantuan feats  of engineering, but, on the contrary, admires them, in the  fullest  aesthetic sense of the word, like a traveler turning a bend in the road whereby  an enormity of landscape is revealed, overwhelming his ego, freeing him up toward a larger  question while simultaneously diminishing his particularity in the  very grandeur  of  it all...Angerame even loves the works of man, as  he  loves  work itself, but there’s something awestruck before these very works that recalls the child’s  wonder before the suddenness of natural disaster, like a five year  old staring into a friend’s gaping wound...

"Modernity,  what happened to your highway? You tower over us, then  you  disappear.  The arch and ribs of the guardrails seemed so very real to us,  like  the backbone  of  a stegosaurus. Gone. The casually defiant smoked  cigarettes  upon you. The sincerely healthy played tennis in your shadows. You were close to  our places  of  work  downtown. The seagulls’ cries echoed in  your  ribcage.  Gone. Submerged in the rising waters of time. One more atlanta vanity.

"The  illusion  looms high, but passes like the ships you could see  from  those heights...The  frozen  freighter at anchor beneath the  endlessly  (?)  spanning bridge,  is haunted, and somehow recalls the ghostship from Nosferatu,  even  in its perfect otherworldly calm. The film hides its meaning, comes in like the tide but still disappears...A fragment of a circle, abstracted. Near the bridge.  The highway  snakes along. Adolescents tagged it. A jogger likes a flea on its  back. And emptied of cars it’s its own worst indictment: now that we’re not busy  with it, what can it mean?

"The  staunch  Ferry Building, the swift ferry and its charms,  the  blimp,  the helicopter. ---All  of them toys when it cast its cool morning shadow their  way. We were heading out toward our favorite cafe, unknowing it would come down, like rain...

"Premonition is not just about a defunct highway to have done with, it’s the  painful inventory of a desired and questionable relationship gone down."—Ronald F. Sauer

"The  concrete  world of the American infra-structure and its  demise  are  made strangely  poetic in this expressionist documentary which shows the  vacant  San Francisco  Embarcedero Freeway after it has outlived its usefulness, before  its destruction.  In an atmosphere of daylight, mystery, Angerame sows inklings  and reveals  the past encircled by the future. Lyrical, ominous, comic,  PREMONITION works  on  the attentive viewer like a remembrance of something that is  yet  tohappen, silent, telling daydream."—Barbara Jaspersen Voorhees.

"Roads, bridges, street lamps and underpasses are all harbingers of an untold urban tale, set in the vacant San Francisco Embarcadero Freeway before its’ destruction. We are led through a desolate cityscape as if we were actually penetrating it. A bridge covered with graffitied sperms heading towards downtown, is a metaphor for the man-made womb that is the city. PREMONITION’S approach is as lucid as it is perplexing."—Images Film Festival, Toronto, 1997


Director's Choice Award, Black Maria Film Festival, Sept., 1996

Ann Arbor Film Festival, 1996

Director's Choice Award, Black Maria Film Festival, 1996

Ann Arbor Film Festival, Prize Winner, 1995


Available for sale on videotape.