Wednesday, October 31, 2012


Colossal Youth (2006) - Costa
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For two and a half hours, we follow Ventura, an eldery resident of Lisbon's slum known as Fontainhas, as he visits his various 'children' and have lengthy conversations with them. Costa concludes his trilogy with this tall, erect man in a dark suit and white shirt in almost every frame. This DV shot film is remarkably beautiful. As with his other two in the trilogy, the film is an immersive experience: with its quiet protagonists and deliverately slow, leasurely pacing, you get to 'live in' with these souls in their darkness, listening to their stories. Costa's docufilms are nothing like I've experienced before and Colossal Youth, with its poetry, is the most beautiful of them all.

In Vanda's Room Review

Ossos Review


La Captive (2000) - Akerman
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Akerman's parable about jealousy, possessiveness is that of simplicity- an obsessive love story devoid of pettiness and emotional outbursts. Instead, she prefers carefully composed shots and operatic narrative to illustrate a tragedy born out of controlling jealousy in man-woman relationship. Simon (Stanislas Merhar) first seen perving over the images of Ariane (Sylvie Testud) having a good time at the beach with her friends. Then we find out that he already has her living in his grand mansion where he and his grandma reside. Ariane is passive and defenseless- "If you like," or "As you wish." are her most common answers to Simon's incessant demands. He trails Ariane's whereabouts whenever she leaves the house and imagines wild lesbian escapades she may or may not be up to. There is a funny scene- convinced that Ariane is having a lesbo relationship, Simon visits a lesbian couple and thoroughly asks them about the nature of their relationship. After accusing her of lying, he declares the end of the relationship and of course it is for her benefit. She obliges, saying even though it would hurt her, "as you wish". For her in relationship, there should be some mysteries remain in your partner. For him, it's the opposite. Rachmaninov's Isle of the Dead is a perfect fit to the stormy finale to this moody, intriguing piece of filmmaking.