This topic is part of the 2012 MUBI World Cup. If you have not already done so, please read the first post at the topic for an introduction to and rules about this year’s World Cup:
The purpose of this topic is to cast votes in the matchup listed above and also to be a forum for discussing the films in the match.
Anyone who has seen both of the films listed above may vote in this match. You must vote for whichever of the two films you personally like better. In order to vote you must post a reply to this topic containing one of the following sequences:
If you are voting for Uprise: “Portugal (Uprise) 1 – Slovakia (The Garden) 0”
If you are voting for The Garden: “Portugal (Uprise) 0 – Slovakia (The Garden) 1”
Your vote must contain the names of both films with a “one” after the film you are voting for and a “zero” after the other film. If your vote is not formatted in this way it will not be counted.
Along with your vote you are strongly encouraged to leave additional comments regarding your reactions to the films, your reasons for why you voted the way you did, and responses to other participants’ comments. Being able to have deep discussion about the films and different aspects of them is an important part of finding enjoyment in participating in the World Cup.
This match will end on Wednesday, May 30 at 10:00 PM GMT. No votes attempted to be cast after that time will be counted. Shortly after the match ends the votes will be tallied and a winner of the match will be declared. If the films both receive the same number of votes, the match will be considered a tie.
The percentage of votes each film receives in a match will have an effect on whether or not the corresponding country will participate in the final round of the World Cup. Thus even if the film you vote for loses in this match, your vote will still be important.
The results of the matches as well as the schedule for future matches can be found here:
If you would like to participate but are unable to find sources to watch these films, please send me a personal message so that I can invite you to the private website featuring internet links to view the films.
Portugal (Uprise) 1 – Slovakia (The Garden) 0
Both films are great, but Uprise and the other Sandro Aguilar films I have watched really opened up a new world of films for me. Everything in his production house (O som e a fúria) is completely worth to watch and unveils human relations (both internal and interpersonal) in such a unique way.
I have somehow grown personally attached to Aguilar’s work, such subtle narratives and images make it impossible for me not to be a fan of his and not to vote for his film in this match.
Sorry to miss this match, as I very much enjoyed the inventive The Garden – one of my favorite films in the Cup, so far. However, since I have been able to watch every other film for free on the voting blog, and am not a paying member of mubi, I won’t be paying just to see Uprise (or giving my credit card info just for the free trial). The Garden was just quirky enough, with a very clever and funny plot, that it was a treat throughout. Of course, the levitating lady at the end was the clincher – as I mentioned in the Voting Secrets thread some time ago.
Good luck to both films. Hope we get some more participants than our last match.
I feel bad that you won’t be seeing it. I want to encourage people to watch it on MUBI too though…..
Is anyone going to be watching this on MUBI?
i just watched it on mubi. and frankly, anyone that isn’t prepared to pay a couple of dollars after they’ve had so many other films for free (on the principle that they are pretty difficult to get hold of otherwise) is absolutely pathetic. if we don’t encourage distribution channels this way then we’re as fucked as regards availability as we’ve ever been. it’ll just be the academic elite with access to film libraries and festivals, plus those who can figure out what a proxy server is.
and seeing as i am here, i might as well vote, as it’s no contest. ‘quirky’ brings me out in hives vomit. although, if i have to watch another movie with a meaningful dog in it (tarkovsky, why? what did you do?) i’m phoning the RSPCA and reporting widespread metaphor abuse.
although i am fine with funereal hamsters/gerbils/rat-things.
I am in about an hour… agree with what magpies said too
I’m so used to seeing “not available in your area” I never think to check
I’m sooooo busy right now, but I want to find time to watch this one on principle
I watched it on MUBI. Cost is about the same as 10 cigarettes, or 2 liters of regular gasoline—don’t you dislike how money-a-thons (radio or tv) always break down money into tiny correspondences of price. For instance, “Become a KCRW angel patron for just $3,000.00 a year, which is merely the cost of 3 trips to the vet for your pet pug Peetie, or the cuttings of one rare orchid from Laos; or an original X-Men comic book . . . isn’t the music we play for you worth more than a comic book, a withered root, a couple of Fido’s check-ups? We’re running out of time, and if I don’t see the switchboards light-up soon, I won’t be playing that Billy Joel song you’ve been asking for.” Maybe they don’t do that in other parts of the world. And just where in the digital age do they even find “a switchboard?” Later on the films.
frankly, anyone that isn’t prepared to pay a couple of dollars after they’ve had so many other films for free (on the principle that they are pretty difficult to get hold of otherwise) is absolutely pathetic
OK – I am now pathetic – thanks a lot. Sorry if my own pointless comments caused this reaction. I withdraw my comments and also withdraw from this event, if this is just going to get personal. Now, I come across not only as a cheapskate but an ass.
Please watch the film on Mubi and just take my own comments as superfluous and pathetic..I never use my credit card on-line after my computer was hacked into once upon a time and all my personal info stolen. I normally get my films from my library (yes, free) as I am on a limited fixed income (not working). I still buy occasional DVDs, too – but only for films I’ve already seen and love. I’m not against paying to see films, but just not a fan of paying on-line. To use BrotherDeacon’s comparison, a $3.00 film is a loaf of bread or a can or two of cat food for my two cats. But, I’m not making any excuses for my own financial situation and know people could care less. Think on before ever making personal remarks, however.
I’m sure Uprise is a fine film, but I really liked ‘quirky’ The Garden, even thousgh it makes some others puke..Thanks for providing me some great films to see in this event, so apologies for offending others with my remarks.
I’d like everyone to have the choice to watch and like or dislike the films they want. No reason to make people feel like their comments aren’t valued. I’m glad for anyone who wants to participate expecially you Oxy. Just because one person states they strongly don’t like a film doesn’t mean another person has to feel bad about liking it. Obviously all of these films were loved by someone around here or they wouldn’t have been submitted.
Im really cautious about my cc too, after being ripped off royally when joining an online movie site, i feel pretty safe with mubi though and can just pay for a one off thing without some big membership commitment /
my agreeing with the sentiment as I think about it, comes on the back of so many comments I see from people who now don’t want to pay for anything to do with cinema as they are becoming so accustomed to getting it for nothing – there are strong feelings at both ends of the spectrum as we know in this debate
Portugal (Uprise) 0 – Slovakia (The Garden) 1
Uprise is a very dark film, both visually and thematically. There wasn’t anything light about it until around the one hour mark, when the one guy killed the other guy’s avatar (character?) in the video game at the party. I could also do without all the greens and blues, as well as the shadows. Show me what’s on the screen!
The Garden is light and fun, and yes, quirky. The characters felt a bit like types in a quirky film, but there was quite a bit of humanity in them as well. Kind of like a Veit Helmer film without being so over the top.
@Oxy, I’ve got no beef with you either way.
My problem is figuring out who to vote for, if I vote arty, I discount those two male actors I found so entertaining in Martin Šulík’s The Garden; plus the remembrances of all those magical realism films that seemed to flood the “foreign movie” racks at DVD stores, or were they Video stores in 1995? Not that I liked Magical-Realism very much. I remember fondly an earlier era in magical-realism’s Sonia Braga naked films. When Sonia’s nipples used to detach from her breasts and fly about the room like a deity’s weapons in a Bengali folk tale, finally spinning at the ears of some derelict boyfriend or married teacher who’s looking for a brush with ecstasy (non-frontally nudity my sisters) in some cheap lovers’ trysting squat, where the nipples whisper whimsical quotes of carnality before flying out the window to spread sage secrets to the coked-out dancers on the Carnival boulevards. They’ll come back at dawn, exhausted and not nearly as perky as before, crawl into bed and suture themselves magically to Sonia’s heretofore quizzical tits. You know those type of movies, where houses levitated at Kusturica’s finger snap and no matter how dire the predicament, there was always a Bruja with her trixter spirits to save the day for the sympathetic blind girl before the end titles rolled. They’d have titles such as: Like Water for Eréndira, or Time of the Gypsy Groundhog Days. They were capricious and carried just the minimal amount of gravitas to keep from being regarded as petty entertainments. They won awards hand over fist for years, but cinematic crazes, and crazies marched on.
Where did they march to? Portugal. Where directors use technological tools to spin dreary mood pieces like psychiatrists use placebo drugs. Neither contains anything approaching efficacy or intelligible intent, but patients/viewers in small but vocal numbers feel cured, or at least consider themselves in the presence of something worthwhile. Sandro Aguilar has been producing and directing professional, production-glossed films for some time, and now seems to have a growing number of very talented directors under the aegis of his production company. He himself has directed many short films to greater and greater notoriety in the last decade, Uprise (A Zona) being his debut feature length entry. The camera work in the first 20 minutes of Uprise was quite complex and interesting. A cyan hue covered everything, even inside the hospital where light was used in puddles of exposure, and what I assume was digital conjunctions of ultra macro photography at zero depth-of-field (ie. the baby in its incubator, or the wounded person’s eyelid in the hospital would rise up through some dark transition ground (digital compositing) like the ghost lens of Gregg Toland to immediately shift focus impossible for a normal lens or eye—revealing images 50 feet away, still in focus. Of course Toland was doing it in-camera to Welles’ instructions, with diopters and huge amounts of lumens, for story effect, whereas our modern Portuguese filmmaker was just doing it because it looked and sounded pretty cool. I know he didn’t do it for story, because there was no intelligible story, or even an apparent desire for one. On second thought, his film’s palette, moods and camera manipulation have been seen in Agnes Godard’s work with Claire Denis, and I seem to remember some similar looks in Jacques Audiard’s A Prophet. One could probably guess of certain influence from Gilles Deleuze’s theories on film and thought as well. But what angered me most was that the arty tricks kept drawing attention to themselves and weren’t connected to any transference of information other than entertainment of the technology itself, and only the morose side of that spectum as well. A few-tricks pony. It’s not too unlike watching 5 reels of visual effects out-takes. His film was fundamentally opaque for no higher cause than the auteur didn’t care to allow the audience to participate. How grossly self-serving, perhaps cowardly. I believe he knew how to carve the length of a feature, although he was only used to shorter edits. However some of his choices were questionable. His characters all looked the same, but weren’t the same, or they were the same but in the past, or was it in the future, or during death to a father or perhaps a son, or a motorcycle running off the road carrying two strangers into fatal drama. And don’t get me started on dogs, with or without flea-wear. Throw in a mysterious train with no apparent meaning, allegorically or metaphorically, some drunken revelers at a Christmas party menstrual show, and you have Rosebud, but no Citizen Kane. They weep, they murmur, they smoke, but mostly they stare vapidly into space and need a shave. It’s a reflection of the modern dilemma indeed.
Was there nothing to appreciate in either films? Yes there was quite a lot to like, but the miscues kept crossing out the pluses until I became weary of either one. Neither one was reaching for much, The Garden seemed to be most interested in entertainment, while Uprise seemed bent on being considered profound through confusion. And whether that confusion was intended or not is still unanswered in my head. For those who enjoyed Uprise, or for those who want more reasons to dislike it, here’s a quote from the director to quickly explain the lead character’s motivation:
" He’s even able to foresee the fall and of feeling in his skin the profound ruts jut out in the ground. In the same way he can know when a nurse is looking at him even with his eyed closed. He knows that by following that track and once down there, he would only find iron and flesh melted into one. He knows that if he can’t spread his arm into the abyss and ransom his mother from there, he can only immerse himself in that underground he has privileged access to because he doesn’t know anything else. Lonely yet unwillingly communicant – the zone greets, the zone liberates." —Sandro Aguilar, the INDIELISBOA FESTIVAL 2008 guide
That about says it all. I vote perhaps for vim alone. Pity my foolishness:
Portugal (Uprise) 1 — Slovakia (The Garden) 0
Just to make it clear, I fully support Mubi and its on-line cinema. I would have no problem paying to see any film here, if I wanted to see the film. My first comments were untimely and shouldn’t have been posted, when this event was going on.
However, the remarks directed at me hurt – I don’t mind saying, since it was from someone I personally respected. I guess my own comments can be rather stupid and pointless, too – as my first above. I really don’t want this to esculate, so think if I’m just annoying some people here by my presence (which was never my intention when revisiting this site), then perhaps it’s best to just be an observer. It’s taken the fun out of it for me, so for my own piece of mind, I am withdrawing from active participation on site.
Thanks to those who had the patience and understanding to read my rather tenuous posts. Apologies to all who were offended or thought them totally inane. I always enjoy all the other’s comments, so will be following them with interest. Thanks to Riss for being so patient and understanding. Peace to all!
well, i am sorry if i offended you oxymoron, but your initial post did rather sound like you were miffed that uprise wasn’t available like all the others and that you should be able to see it for free. but as you’ve clarified, you fully support mubi’s online attempts to distribute cinema (which it has to be said, are attempts much more diverse than a cursory glance at the front page of its forum would have you believe), and that it’s more a matter of finances and trust for you than some strange principle. so subtract your presence from the ‘anyone’ i directed my comment to, and just leave it at all the other people who won’t be watching this film (and who didn’t watch portabella in the last cup) simply because they take for a given what is in fact an insane, untenable luxury. you’re not pathetic, you’re just poor.
l haven’t seen Uprise since l don’t have any cradit card, so l’m not going to vote ofc. but l just wanted to express my love for that slovakian film, one of the best cinematic experiences of mine. At the beginning of his essay on Dante T.S.Eliot said how he won’t do any analysis of his work, he just wants to write about his impressions and feelings when he “met” Dante for the very first time, how strong that meeting was and how much he was affected. and that is one great essay, but l mentioned it bec l’m not going to do any sort of analysis now, l just want to try to describe why this film is one of my fav. it has mesmerizing photography imo, rural landscapes that l so love to see in film, it’s dreamy, absurd in moments, funny, sad etc etc but in every of those aspects l’ve seen better films. the thing with this one is that this film gave me one special feeling of life. l remember how happy l was while l was watching it. and, more important, l can’t compare that sort of happiness to aynthing. l remember how l wanted to go out and just jump. for no reason but to jump. or how l wanted to levitate or to write backwards or to do many silly things (and l remembered a million other silly things l want do to that are not in film). and l smiled, smiled, smiled. and now, every time when l see still from that film, every time l think of that film, l feel same sort of happiness, same fullness of life, same warmness and melancholy. and l’ll keep thinking of that film, l’ll keep rewatching it for the rest of my life, l’ll keep doing silly things and feeling the life. feeling the life as a dream.
^Wow! Now THAT sounds like a satisfying cinematic experience :)
Also it is kind of inspiring to hear that you don’t have any credit cards. I tried to avoid getting one as long as possible. I think it may have been until I was 25 or so before I finally got one. Someone convinced me it was good to have one to increase my credit score. It’s true if you pay it off every month which I always did for years. But as is almost inevitable I started getting behind and now I’m struggling to get out of debt. Not much. Just a couple thousand dollars. But more than I’d like….
well, sometimes l really want to order some dvd harder to find, or some book or ticket for a concert via web and in situations like those l wish l had some credit card. but then l remember how l’m sucker for all those things and how l call myself hacker when l succeed in some thing very easy to other people as burning a cd (still l’m not sure if l can do that to be honest :p ), so l’m not complaining much :) after all, l have possibility to see masterpieces of cinema In Belgrade Cinematique every day, on celluloid, for 1 euro and not to mention festivals. or to buy amazing books great editions for 1 or 2 or 3 euros from my street booksellers :) and, a couple thousands dollars sounds much to me :D
@DeeBee—Belgrade Cinematique sounds so wonderful. Really like your ideas about The Garden, also the T.S. Eliot and Dante communications. Criticism sucks, even good criticism is dubious; credit cards are devilish invitations to consumer orgies, where the more you taste the more you desire and the less you feel any enjoyment. Though buying a ticket to see T.S. Eliot and Dante playing duet language harmonicas would be fun. Oh, and DirtyBee rocks.
It is nice to see that people are enjoying The Garden. It is another film I am very fond of, and was at some point one of my best film experiences too.
About Sandro Aguilar, he tends to do that “technical masturbation” of colours and camera tricks BrotherDeacon was giving his opinion on to alienate the viewer from the screen and make him unconscious of the story. Then he lets it fall, those uncertainty sequences are always followed by moments of lucidity. That’s what I like the most about his films, they are some kind of rollercoaster of images and states of consciousness.
Thank you Brotherdeacon for your as always kind words :) l think you’d enjoy T.S.Eliot’s work as essayist in a sense of his bright thoughts, his funny (though sarcastic) conclusions no matter that you couldn’t agree often with his views and ideas (or, maybe it seems to me cuz l can’t resonate much with positivist critics and have a feeling that it would be too “tight” for you, too) but l would really like to recommend you one book of essays that changed my mind about critics and theory of literature in general and made me realize how great it can be. but l’ll send you pm since l don’t want to spam this voting thread :)
btw, Oxymoron, along with Brotherdeacon l think you’re the only one taking part in every match commenting every film and you have all my respect (and l’m sorry if l missed someone who also took a part in every match)
and Santropez, l remember your comment on The Garden’s wall, l sooo loved it :)
stupid pointless annoying inane….gosh Oxy I don’t think anyone was using/thinking those words about you your participation or your posts!
Portugal (Uprise) 0 — Slovakia (The Garden) 1
also loved Garden…Uprise was strong but been a bit blue and wasn’t in the right mood for it
VOTING IS CLOSED
Portugal (Uprise) – 3
Slovakia (The Garden) – 2
The winner is:
wonderful. counting is so much fun.
You are right Magpies, it’s not a tie. Portugal did get 3. Sorry about that. I’ll edit it.
is it worth pointing out for those that found uprise a little grim, that aguilar’s production company is not all doom and gloom. there’s a couple of amazing films, both available to watch on mubi, that compared to uprise are sunnier than a gleam in a mad monkey’s eye…there’s manuel mozos’ ruins for all those with a fetish for architectural decay kitsch – it’s a haunting romp without being maudlin…and then there’s the funny, sweet, unquirky, pure joy of miguel gomes’ the face you deserve, which is more ruiz than mysteries of lisbon. if anyone one knows any contemporary portuguese films like these, please point me in that delicious direction…
you’re not pathetic, you’re just poor.
Thanks, twodeadmagpies, and heartfelt apologies for laying a guilt trip on you of all people. I think I’m not so much poor, but a whiner. I was having a meltdown and unfortunately you were caught in the crossfire. Whenever I have these tantrums, I immediately feel guilty as hell. I always then blame one of my ‘bad’ multiple personalities – of which there are quite a few. In any case, forgive me, and know I think you should always comment as freely as you like. Your unique way with words – that’s what we all love about you!
After reading the comments, I now fully intend to see Uprise on Mubi – sorry I missed it.
Thanks to those who kindly pm’d me – I will reply when I have the chance. I now know how George Bailey felt when some kind friends rallied. Let’s get on with the Cup, eh?