Loznitsa’s cinematography is what immediately shines here, framing his drama with immediacy, obliqueness and naturalism - quotidian, resignation - and muting, insofar as humanising, its wartime viscera. While one could accuse the contemplative aesthetic, comprising also of many a single take, of being concerted an effort - not precluding its didactic commentary, or less than seamless non-linearity - a palpable stoicism belies such defamation to indulge a distinct, slow-burning tableaux, while even managing a pertinent pairing within the yearbook in Shortland’s Lore.
Great picture. Kind of slow pace, but the amazing photography and the astonishing screenplay produced one of the best movies I've watched lately.
Three men enter the forest; two to execute the third. They are attacked and have to depend on each other as they move slowly and inexorably through the fog, with occasional, ominous sounds of battle at some unknown proximity. We gradually learn why the men set out toward their initial goal and how they were led to the choice.
Sem um pingo de psicologia, com um rigoroso plano sequencia, Sergei Loznista nos convida a uma encantadora viagem sensorial que nunca é a reflexão didática sobre a culpa, traição, remorso e coragem. Nesta floresta-mundo, reino de beleza pictórica, terra de ninguém, metáfora de uma humanidade em desordem, volta-se a essência de tudo e se constrói um grande filme onde a substância e forma são indivisíveis.
TIFF '12 Dark tale set in WWII Russia that finds a believed traitor taken out by a couple of russian partisans to the deep forest to be executed only to be ambushed by german soldiers. The men escape but will they survive? As we discover the actions that brought them here questions of perception, guilt and complicity are invoked. Strong script and performances in this overlong but atmospheric picture.
Bleak and harrowing, although not without hopefulness and heart. Technical craft and beautiful performance meet to create one of the most impressive (and subtle) wartime films ever made. In particular, the mesmerizing and powerful single-take opening and closing shots are evidence of an impeccable direction and gift for storytelling. Quite simply, the film leaves you breathless and meditating on mankind.
What can I say? I wanted to sleep. Very badly. Lullingly paced, dark and quiet. But my heart was into its moralism--the immorality of war! Very precise filmmaking, too... A masterpiece of detail and design.