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 Nine Lives: “Norway (Nine Lives) 1 – Tajikistan (Hasan Arbakesh) 0”
If you are voting for Hasan Arbakesh: “Norway (Nine LIves) 0 – Tajikistan (Hasan Arbakesh) 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 Monday, July 2 at 11:00 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.
hmm i don’t know why one is in bold, i am not predicting a winner haha. couldn’t figure out the lil flag thingie and small problem as the film listed as a time for peace in the match roster is listed by original title on mubi. anyway i had no excuse not to try and post the match. maybe riss forgot it was today. so there ya go
Oh my goodness. I’m so sorry I dropped the ball on posting this match. My life is just getting way too hectic. I can hardly keep together my basic duties here as things at work and elsewhere are just so immediate.
Ruby, it feels so good to know that I have people to watch my back. Hopefully, I won’t let this happen again though.
don’t worry riss. i couldn’t let u down. i just copied from the other match. sorry about the flag thing tho :\
Here it is with the flags. Why not?
Norway (Nine Lives) 1 – Tajikistan (Hasan Arbakesh) 0
Just saw the Tajik film and liked it. We have already seen this approach before (the love story set against a history background) and it often works. I especially like the idea that the traditional Hasan is unable to accept the new Saodat and the new times. I think it’s well shot but the screenplay is not so good: Saodat is seen only in a few brief scenes while we follow Hasan’s irrelevant episodes (scoundrels, orphans, etc.) and the story loses its dramatic progression.
Hmmm – this is difficult. I enjoyed both films for completely different reasons, however, I wouldn’t have sought either out on my own. The two intro threads have also given me food for thought.
The film from Tajikistan is certainly a bit conflicted, as indicated in the comments in the intro posted by Kuxa/AFP. Are we to pity Hasan or is he to be seen as a stubborn person who won’t really change with the times – as all his friends are doing. Sure, he is a person with a conscience (as we see several times throughout the film), but is he more than a throw back to times past? I agree with Angel that the film sort of goes off-track a few times into too many meandering threads. Still, it works mainly as a propaganda piece, showing how much more ‘liberating’ it is to have the Soviets in charge, at least for the youth and women of the area. How would this film be seen now in one of those many Arab states turning back into a form of Islamic law and conservatism – something this film seems to reject quite strongly? How we are to interpret Hasan’s own rejection of this modernism? Is his strong character a somewhat subversive subtext to the films ‘higher’ motives – in terms of propaganda for the new State? An interesting film, no matter how one reads its ‘message’.
The Norwegian film follows a true event, which is an amazing tale of survival against great odds. The film moves forward in dramatic fashion, with some nice touches as the actor representing Jan Baalsrud hallucinates at various times. Lots of tension, even though we know from the beginning he would make it to Sweden.
So, for the cinematography and dramatic thrust, I guess the scale has tipped slightly in favor of the Norwegian entry. I, too, am a sucker for survival tales, being a fan since I saw it as a kid of the film The Seventh Cross, where Spencer Tracy plays the lone survivor of an outbreak from a Nazi concentration camp.
now this is more like it. men ripping their shirts open at every unnecessary opportunity to expose their hairy chests, for absolutely no good reason. actually, there was a lot more of no good reason in hasan than just that, to less aesthetic appeal. there were some lovely lovely shots, but some of the cuts were quite…..startling…action scenes launched upon us with no warning…he’s trotting along and all of a sudden his face is a mountain and his horse is dead…if this was meant to be dialectic, i’m not entirely sure why…
if the whole thing hadn’t ended up looking like a bonkers composite from fragments of other films (a hasan serial?) i’d be voting for the chest. however, nine lives was a solid ‘no-liberties’ consistent throughout, so no qualms voting for that. kvlt.
still, really happy to see both these films, the kind i was hoping to see in the cup…
hahaha ^ is there black metal in the film?? k i’m gonna watch it right now
it’s in black & white and the guy has a cute beard. is that enough? (that’s kind of my definition of norwegian black metal, give or take some general misanthropy, misogyny, racism, fascism etc and of course the adorable tree-hugging fenriz)
ok cuz i must’ve missed the part where meg mentioned it was a horror film
that photo makes me laugh tho
Norway (Nine Lives) 0 – Tajikistan (A Time for Peace) 1
Just watched Nine Lives again – indeed a spirited reconstruction of a valiant endeavour, must have been a hellish shoot but have searched my soul and decided to vote for Kimyagarov’s effort in trying to convey something much more difficult, the passing of a way of life with the employment of larger than life mythical type hero and the poignant death of his beloved Rakhsh as symbol of that no longer needed in this new world of technology and collectivism like Hasan himself. Both redundant. Very sad. Our relationship was almost over when he busted out those “fancy dan” dance moves:):) but he redeemed himself with his innate joyous goodness. I wasn’t bothered by the lack of focus on the love story or choppiness as could see an epic feel was trying to be conveyed, a feeling of separation and loneliness as other of life’s pressing imperatives got in the way, of time passing and then of Hasan knowing he can’t go back, there will not be his day in the sun with Saodat. The dying of the ideal..all of that I didn’t think it quite nailed but a pretty good effort. Thanks for intro Kuxa, made the viewing all the more interesting.
ps really happy to see people enjoying NL! …and fenriz rulez
In the fifth grade, seemed like everybody – including me – did an oral book report on The Kon-Tiki. This was a book of epic adventure, if questionable ethnography. But, for a kid, it was heady stuff! I thought Thor Heyerdahl was the neatest guy ever – a model of Norwegian spunk and determination. Now, I have another Norwegian tough guy/survivor to add to the list (no, I don’t mean 2dm’s, either!)
Wow, Meg – voting against your own film, that you introduced. Now, that’s being fair-minded!
when he busted out those “fancy dan” dance moves
what? best bit! the film went downhill from there!
Someone want to end this one in an hour? I’ll be at the gym.
it’s time now … isn’t it? do we go by Standard GMT
i’ll do it riss. i didn’t have time to watch the films tho :(
it was an hour late cuz i was waiting to see if riss showed up. so i put the closing time an hour late as well
oh – ok (quick edit):)
@oxy, yes that was just how it struck me watching them back to back….Kon Tiki was terrific!!
i still intend to watch your film tonight meg ^
i love adventure stuff xD
hope you enjoy it – these weekend matches are devilish hard to get to!
oh gosh i forgot about this LOL
ok the match is closed final tally: norway 4-3 congratulations fenriz!
Ruby close!! It is Norway :)
haha yeah i wondered if anyone noticed my mistake. thanks mate ;)
Whoa, a great adventure Nine Lives is. Love this kind of stuff. It would only benifit if it had a black metal soundtrack. But I can do with what’s there.
Tommy, perhaps the heroic young couple could be wearing black Burzum hoodies while skiing the treacherous mountainsides.--
Just for the record, I really liked both of these films and applaud loudly the filmmakers and crews which filmed them. Arne Skouen seems to be of the John Ford ilk, bringing suspense and everyman characterizations while creating world class derring-do amongst panoramic backgrounds. Even utilized his orchestral score to enhance his story in similar ways to mid-career Ford. Or so it seemed to me. A wonderful film.
Hasan Arbakesh is a work of art from the literary tragic mold, and I loved it. Every detail, every dance, every tear, every meal by the fire, every song atop Hasan’s wagon, every 4 foot long braid, every angry village mother with retribution in her fists, every slave-like worker on the new highway, every ruined love affair, every camera filming the galloping wagoneer and his loyal stead, and every young socialist poet who must “glorify the epoch.” Hasan was a workingman’s hero and paid a terrible price for being caught between two ideological/cultural divisions as Collectivism and new technologies marched over the simple agrarian Tajikistan way of life. An unfulfilled romance, death of friends and culture, death of village professions and even Hasan’s most beloved horse, Rakhsh. Hasan is the hero who is left behind when others are saved. In a future of societal improvement, he represents traditions, religion, language, which were usurped and eventually outlawed by the wave of Communist orthodoxy. Atop his favorite horse, he roars out songs to the sky—unified with his valleys, hills, mountains, Hazan is a one who must be broken, a conservative in time-honored culture which knows very slow change, someone who wants proof of the Socialist life being superior before he’s willing to give up his dreams of a traditional marriage to a hard-working, beautiful young woman, working hard with his horse to earn wages for a house, perhaps plant some trees and grapes, bear children, rise to importance in the village community—defend the regional life. But as must happen, even the renegades finally break, but the future looks much more dim than the Party propagandists predicted. It’s no surprise that Boris Kimyagarov’s mid-1960’s film ran afoul of the Soviet censors. I’m surprised it was allowed to be filmed at all, it being a large defamation of a governmental system which destroyed age-old customs and cultures in trade for a homogenous paradigm of work, education, national language prescriptions, even dress and the disdain of religion as gross superstition. Actions we still see in Afghanistan, Tibet and Western China, Africa, Indonesia. Poor Hasan, to be chosen a movie hero, a transplant for fomenting unusual ideas of rebellion against didacticism; one certainly condemned to struggle, then lose, to be dismissed and eventually forgotten. The politics in Hasan Arbakesh aren’t anti-Soviet so much as pro-humanist in action, rather than in slogans. The violent fundamentalist villagers are certainly seen as cruel and dogmatic in their views, especially those opposed to the equalization of women. While in polarity, Hazan’s struggles against modernization and collectivism cause him and others dreadful sorrows. Fortunately, the film doesn’t present one set of easy answers, but questions all dogma and abuses of power against individuals, no matter whether they’re believers or none believers in the rhetoric of political promise.
The heroics of these two films are strikingly accomplished, each a fine example of adventure and message, shot with tight scripts featuring believable characters in abnormal situations, each protagonist eventually dependent on both a rugged inner source, while simultaneously dependent on the actions of his fellow comrades. These national comrades in one case offer amazing degrees of help and compassion; while in the Tajikistan outback, the national comrades offer cars, cities, education, community ownership, but fail our protagonist utterly. I hope I’ll long remember Hazan dancing with Saodat around the wedding celebration bonfire like young mating pheasants in a spring field, each filled with strength and vital sexuality, approaching then darting away, stealing sidelong glances at each other in quick dance twirls. Coy then bold, nubile and hungry, sassy yet restrained. And though they did look like they could be swinging lassos in an Agnes DeMille choreographed Cowboy romp, it was great cinemagraphic theater.
Thanks to all who worked to bring these films to us