i almost nicked off one grade because i wanted it to be completely and openly resolved the way "it's meant to" but then though better of it. because, in the end, it is an interesting take on generational, academical and inter-familial rivalry that manages to be surprisingly warm when you think about it.
TIFF '11 Worthy winner of best script at this year's Cannes. Cedar pushes himself visually in new ways here as he tells a great story of conflict between father and son. A look at jealousy, tradition, familial tension and the need for recognition from our peers. Ending though lacking resolution is just perfect letting the viewer take the story to its next place. A mature work bound for distrubution and acclaim.
The film might have been a little contrived at times (maybe a little too aware that it would be up for awards), and I simply lost interest about halfway in. I did like the critique of notions of mastery and masculinity, and its questioning of family loyalties, but I was on a 14-hour flight somewhere and can't really remember much else to say. Haha.
ts climactic scene is overwrought, which is unfortunate, but for most of its duration Footnote is a clever, well-crafted, and -- perhaps surprisingly, given that it's about two generations of Talmudic philologists -- even soulful film. Besides the father-son rivalry and the bitter academic politics, there is something in here about language and nation as mutually reinforcing fortresses, imprisoning as they protect.
Solid script & great production qualities...beautiful cinematography, which is saying something for a film that was largely shot indoors and in drab settings, like libraries, gyms, university halls, recital theatres. An understated examination of family and the often troubled, competitive relationship between father and son, not to mention a pretty brilliant meditation on academia.
A clever and lively tale of familial rivalry within the sciences told with bristly energy and dry wit. Footnote becomes a sort of essay on the unveiling of truth; that great aim of science itself and all of the prestige that comes as part of the package. Perfectly designed and structured with bold graphic sequences the film really has few flaws. 4 stars
The performances, dialogue, and SOUNDTRACK all harmonize for a riveting, and ambiguous, exploration of family and work (among other themes). The opening lays a perfect foundation for the film's plot, which is paced and punctuated masterfully. Scenes of intense conflict are coupled with a claustrophobic camera/setting. The human tension is oft relieved, or released, with dark humor, or bold cuts. Genuine, effecting.
Like a lengthy tv episode with a few jokes and no third act. The film tells a story of competition between father and son but fails to show any confrontation, to the point of refusing the audience a resolution. Slow paced character portraits of Jewish intellectuals that can't lift the story up regardless of some ingenious storytelling devices that are certainly entertaining but pointless.