Small Victories

Some enterprising scholar should compile an antology of film. The starting point would be the crowd of ants in Buñuel’s “Un Chien Andalou” (1929), pouring forth from a hole in a human palm: an image provoked by a dream of Salvador Dali’s. Pride of place would go to “Them!,” the mysterious 1954 movie about ants in New Mexico that grow as huge as horses after a nuclear test; the stridulation of unseen creatures in the desert makes music—a high,...

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