Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Colossal Loneliness at the End of the World

Liverpool (2008) - Alonso
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Alonso's 'lonely man trilogy' (as it was termed before Jauja), concludes with Liverpool. Same thin guideline here - a man named Farrel who works on container ship takes a trip to Ushuaia, a southernmost tip of Patagonia, where he was born. He hasn't seen his mother for years, and he wants to visit.

Just like all of Alonso's lone protagonists exhibit basic human needs - eating, sleeping, sex (or release). The colossal loneliness we feel in these characters in unforgiving environments remind me of Herzog's films. But unlike nature fearing protags in the Barbarian filmmaker's films, Alonso's peeps thrive, like ants or seem very comfortable in their surroundings.

Alonso does something different in Liverpool, there is a daring focus shift when Farrel gets to his destination. His frail dying mother doesn't recognize him and he is left with a semi-retarded sister/daughter. Again, there is a memento mori, a Liverpool keychain he leaves with the retarded girl.

Alonso is trying to find something, through each of his films. It might be something transcendental, a reflection of human nature, frailty, loneliness.... I am just mesmerized by all of it.

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