Reviews

The bad news: time flies. The good news: you’re the pilot.

I just watched the perfect movie. Cashback was something I’d downloaded on a whim a few months back, and finally got around to watching tonight after a couple of failed episodes of The Mighty Boosh, and it left me wishing I’d written the entire thing down, just so I could take a piece of beautiful dialogue with me, or taken screen shots of the entire movie to hang on my walls, to remind myself that beauty can be found in the most modest and unassuming places.

It’s filmed mostly in the stark, fluorescent simplicity of a supermarket in the middle of winter in England; hardly the most picturesque of settings, yet the cinematography is so fluid, effortlessly seaming from one location to another. Watch solely for the astounding effect of Ben going from standing in a doorway to lying in his bed, without appearing to move at all. Oh, and Ben has the ability to stop time and examine the world around him – one standout scene, ironically the most graphic and likely to turn me off, was probably one of the most beautiful and strikingly memorable:

“I read once about a woman whose secret fantasy was to have an affair with an artist. She thought he would really see her. He would see every curve, every line, every indentation, and love them all because they were part of the beauty that made her unique.”

This definitely made me want to meet an artist of my own 🙂

I can’t get over the beauty of this film. Its starting point revolves around something we’ve all experienced: insomnia, break-ups, dead-end jobs entirely devoid of significance. I adore how these commonplace nothings are used to explore something personal; internal monologues, a mind’s inability to remain at rest, and living in frozen seconds to explore the beauty of everyday life. I could watch this time and time again and never tire of the magical blend of fantasy, art, amazing photography and heartfelt emotion tied into an everyday life we can all relate to.

“Once upon a time, I wanted to know what love was. Love is there if you want it to be. You just have to see that it’s wrapped in beauty and hidden away in between the seconds of your life. If you don’t stop for a minute, you might miss it.”

Huge recommendation.

Children of Men

Last night I finally went to see Children of Men; haven’t been to the cinema in a while, but this was one I’d wanted to see ever since I heard the premise, I didn’t even need to see a trailer. It was pretty intense, and it feels slightly wrong to say “I loved it” about a movie about the end of the world, but it was fantastic. One of the things about really good stories concerning alternate realities, futures, worlds or whatever, is the believability factor. That’s why I love shows like Torchwood so much – the writing and the stories just bring a disturbing sense of “this could actually happen”, on a level that doesn’t need monsters and aliens to be frightening; the mere idea of the very real possibility that it all could happen is scary enough on its own.

The most disturbing part, I found, was the fact that yes, it was the end of the world, but unlike say, War of the Worlds, it wasn’t an invasion or some global disaster that threatened to end humanity without too much delay. Everyday life was a long, slow walk towards the end of the world, consumed by the knowledge that existence no longer had any meaning. In fifty or sixty years, the human race would be extinct, and life was merely the resulting insanity that was complete and utter destruction and chaos in the streets.

It was very different. You just don’t see movies like this. Movies usually require a willing suspension of disbelief in order to be entertained; this needed no such thing. I don’t even think “entertained” would be the right word to describe it. It was just shocking to fathom a reality that could very well happen, who knows, obviously not in the near future but who’s to say in a couple of hundred years something like that is impossible? What happens to humanity when it’s told that life no longer has any purpose; for surely our ultimate goal is to carry on the species. An incredibly insightful and frighteningly real depiction of what happens when purpose is taken away. Go see it.