Maybe I need to read this first so that I can realize and understand the film.. Thanks for this!!!
Really interesting article on this move;http://sensesofcinema.com/2008/feature-articles/sweet-movie-mortimer/
Perverse, satircal, downright repugnant, and yet bizarrely watchable. A thematic precursor to Salò. Many times throughout the film, I kept on asking myself, "How is this legal?!"
Dusan Makavejev’s “Sweet Movie”/SWM (1976) is about two irreconcilable social strata our specie is fatally polarized on (paralyzed) – rich and poor (strong and weak, leaders and followers, deciders and the docile or the rebellious), about their psychology, so different and so unbreakably linked, and about their respective madness as a result of their permanent struggle and the impossibility of their unification. In other words, SWM is a film about the tragic impossibility of a real democracy in a too proud age of formal democracy. Makavejev analyzes two types of violence (that of the rich and that of the poor), coming as a consequence of the impossibility of a reconciliation between those on top and those on the bottom of the social hierarchy. According to the film, the violence of the wealthy (sovereigns) against the poor (the dependent ones) – triggers violence of the poor that sometimes surpasses that of the wealthy in its intensity and meaninglessness. By depicting the destiny of two protagonists, one with a conformist position towards the rich (Miss World, dreaming to exchange her virginity for marriage with a billionaire), and the other with a revolutionary position and sweet dream about a militant liberation of humankind (Anna Planeta moving about Europe on a ship with a giant smiling and crying figurehead of Karl Marx), Makavejev rejects the both attempts to solve the problem of inequality and injustice as sentimental and inadequate. While Miss World personifies the common superstitious idea that the poor can find life on the outskirts of wealth (in a condition that they will be persistent: hard working, in their efforts to get closer to its center), Anna Planeta personifies the two historical trends of rebellious resistance – the Soviet “socialist” (under the banner of Communism) and Western mass culture with its consumerism, freedom of sailing sales, pseudo-prosperity, sexual liberation and entertainment (as a “pragmatic” mini-Communism “equalizing” rich and poor in the utopia of general porous-prosperity). Makavejev’s directorial style in SWM is unique by a semantic distance between the intentional “juiciness” of his visual images and their meaning. Makavejev is a shock therapist of viewers’ blunted perception of the reality as a way to awaken their cognition. His aesthetic canon can be defined as anti-propaganda aesthetics, as a masterful undoing of what ideological propaganda, be it “socialist” or pseudo-democratic has done to human thinking. The film examines why attempts to create real democracy are failing again, in front of our very eyes. In 21st century when the wealthiest 1% (with their intellectual servants and conservative propagandists) advance under the banner of pauperization programs for the 99% through austerity measures, the cultural and aesthetic radicalness of Makavejev’s thinking and style in SWM can be appreciated much more today than it was in a more democratic years when the film was released. Makavejev masterfully combines fiction narratives and documentaries, mock documentaries and semantically stylized images to create a multi-narration about the human existential and political predicaments in today’s world. By Victor Enyutin
The universe is conspiring against me to watch this film. First the controversial seduction scene is removed from YouTube, and now the full cut froze on Hulu+, who are notorious for not bookmarking where you left off on films, an hour and a half before an art show/reunion with an old friend. I do love what I've seen and highly recommend it based on that, it's a Marxist sex comedy and those don't come out very often.
The politics are a bit dated but the film is true enough to Makavejev's opposition to what he sees as life-denying ideologies from soviet communism to capitalism. The film falls between 'Pink Flamingos' as essentially a test of hippie tolerance and 'The act of seeing with ones own eyes' where despite it's grotesque content the curious fashion in which it's filmed is almost inviting.Yeah I actually liked this.
"The whole world is our country, it's great to be mad, it's fun to do nothing, do things in the nude, oh it's sweet to be hungry, finger lickin' good" Sweet Movie is too bizarre & good humoured to be unsettling, I didn't find it a negative experience, it just rollicks along and you go with it...or not. I enjoyed the ride. How to score this? it's either nothing or everything, isn't it? 5/5
There are more effective ways to bring attention to something than being this over the top. Anyone who likes this film is just saying so because they think it's "in" to like it. American Psycho was about as far as you need to go over the top to prove something. Showing the stuff that this film does it just ridiculous. I only watched it because it's next in line for the "popular" films on this site that I'm doing.