Infuriatingly protracted in some longer than needed episodes, Diaz's melancholic saga offers a unique perpsective on how reality (from the individual self and personal mourning to the collective loss) reveals itself in long static shots. These tesify to the directors' gifts mainly in exterior shots in the jungle or elsewhere. His sense for aural scultpure creates a palpable world of mundane despair and identity loss.
It moves beyond Contemplation Cinema, it ascends the notion of "Art for arts sake" and becomes a rebellion, aesthetically and politically. There is a point in the film in which Alberta is telling Julian that she'd rather be an unknown teacher rather than a high status person inside the system. That I believe is Diaz, speaking directly to his audience, to his "students," to us.
The stages of grief and the dramatic process that three people take to find salvation and closure, haunted by the desappearance of their companions, victims of the tumultuous history of the small nation of the Phillipines. Lav Diaz continues with 'Melancholia' his trip to unveil to the viewer the filipino life and history. The trash tune chorus that splits the movie into two acts is quite remarkable.
Wow. Just wow. For the first hour and a half, I kept throwing reasons at myself to be able to shut this film off, to avoid an eight-hour commitment. And there were a few, but I decided to stick with it. Two hours later, I was glued to the television. It pulled the rug out from under me. Film manages to be profound, while also provocative (literal pornography, cacophonies of noise). Only a few superflous shots. Wow.
Pure cinematic savour. The human wrecks of the story are both causes and effects of the troubled Filipino sociopolitical condition. The movie in the first part deals with the individual and in the -devoid of dialogue- end with the collective, bridging the past with the ominous future of the country . Finally it poses questions about the artistic creation.
Avec un constant arrière-plan historique et dramatique, la douloureuse et agitée période de la dictature militaire, le réalisateur met doublement en scène et en relief des personnages à la fois sublimes et dérisoires, comédiens interprétant des protagonistes déchirés, eux-mêmes en représentation dans des rôles assignés par un prétendu démiurge en doute permanent. Magnifique et perturbant. www.cinefiches.com
Meurtris par d'impossibles deuils, les personnages tentent de traverser les limbes de mélancolie qui menacent de les engloutir, à l'instar des trombes d'eau s'abattant sans fin. Les images de Lav Diaz transmettent à merveille cette "tristesse sans cure". Au long de ses trois parties séparées par deux étonnants intermèdes artistiques, le film soulève également d'amples questions sociales, politiques et psychologiques.
"I have now realised the lyrical madness of this struggle. It is all about sadness. It is about my sadness. It is about the sorrow of my people. I cannot romanticise the futility of it all. Even the majestic beauty of this island couldn't provide an answer to this hell. There is no cure to this sorrow."
I'm curious, how many sittings did you all watch this film in? ---- Once you get used to the pace, this is a very enjoyable film. Due to the slow pace you don't notice the length of the film so much, and you realise how unnecessary frequent edits are. The plot unwinds at a suitable pace, the sparse dialogue offering keys to the background of the story. Fantastic. I can't wait for more Diaz.
Opera mastodontica, uno degli apici del Cinema contemporaneo. La potenza visiva di alcune scene è a dir poco disarmante, pellicola intensa e devastante, da vedere e contemplare. Il personaggio maschile principale (la figura del pimp), inoltre, ricorda vagamente il regista di Century of Birthing.
I've learned anything you can say about a Lav Diaz film seems quite trite in relation to the experience of actually watching one. This film probably has more rain than any other, carrying with it all the sadness of not only the Filipino nation - as is common with Lav Diaz - but now also the universal human symbiosis and almost dependency on melancholy. Modern sadness is a driving force for social connection.
Lav Diaz, Director, Writer, Cinematographer. An eight hour journey that carries us along as if we can feel the wind through the jungle. Melancholia is not unlike Apocalypse Now in its scope and ambition, taking a close in look at the seen within the unseen. Moments where you cry out for camouflage. Others the mosh pit. The nun meets with the hooker , and they hold each other and cry. Dark island nights. Chiquito.
I am pleased I do not have to unpack this thing for you in detail, because I spend a lot of my time w/ these Diaz pics cocooned in a trance-state. Got briefly lost 'round hour six. So, Evolution of a Filipino Family was about national identity, this one is about personal identity. Personal identity swathed in metaphysics. Really, really made me think of doing mescaline. The noise band is delightful and very awful.
I think this one is far more challenging and needs more patience than other films by Lav Diaz I've seen up to now. The idea of sadness/melancholy as impuls and reason for every human expression, activity and art leads us into the heart of his poetics but also into the center of his politcal thinking. He creates some powerful as well as intimate sequences to underline this statement.