The man in this film beats off, in private, while at the same time pointing the camera at himself and addressing an off-screen outsider. It must be put simply: Sackl doesnt point just the camera, but his dick too, at us, the viewers, the outsiders, at me, a member of the theater audience. Why? The environment: a non-environment, a black room which isolates his body from its natural environment. This artificial non-space creates distance, both for and from the viewer, in other words between Sackl and me, and for him, from his mise-en-scene, his presentation of himself. As a result Sackl alters his position and places himself at our disposal: the unavoidable struggle with and for the permission to be horny, supposing to be, being able to be, wanting to be or having to be, and the insatiable need to put himself on display. The two unedited scenes, made ten years apart, were shot in single frames. Time lapse condenses the four hours of footage into three minutes of projection time.
STEIFHEIT I. Cut. Ten years later. STEIFHEIT II. The same setup, postures, movements. Sackl repeats his actions, though at the same time he seems to be someone else. The nonchalance, playfulness, and the vanity also, have been pushed into the background. STEIFHEIT I shows Sackl as he presents himself and intends to present himself. STEIFHEIT II shows us Sackl demonstrating the act of self-presentation to himself. The distance from the figure being presented is increased as a result of this intervention, the temporal shift and possibly the personal development of the individual Albert Sackl.
Stiffness. This is lost at the end of the second part. Sackl just sits there, waitingrattled, annoyed, thinking. When an individual takes their place on a stage, they make their own demand, their need vulnerable. Why?
Translation: Steve Wilder