Involving, in a way I've not seen a film function before...with an exquisitely incremental sense of
dread, all the way to its end. The word "observational," to describe it, is deeply apt...and
from that quality flows all its power. Says more about North American life in 2018 than any film you may
see any time soon... in the end, disorienting--and, I'm pretty sure that was its intent...a hypnotically original
Dignity, which is the value the world puts on your existence, is a more fundamental necessity than love, freedom, or happiness. Can you live a dignified life when you despise what you’ve become and when you know that you’re not of much value to anybody? Also On how to escape from a life you hate without killing yourself, and on how to make people treat you with dignity. This is a very charming film.
In its lucid and cringeworthy depiction of a selfish and wildly ineffectual family man, HOW HEAVY THIS HAMMER could be said to combine the Safdie brothers' DADDY LONGLEGS w/ the bleary caustic schadenfreude of Rick Alverson. It is a tricky ironic film made in the language of earnestness, featuring a remarkable lead performance by a performer (if you can even call him that) who cannot possibly care what you think.
I know this is meant to be a realistic portrait of the quotidian indignities in the life of a painfully average man, but I wish it had more depth and more bite. The banality of the content AND the form results in a somewhat apathetic correlation. The recurrent use of Bellini's "Casta Diva" (a sublime plea for peace against impending war in the opera "Norma") seems almost kitschy here.
This film is a close up (literally) in a life of a man drowned in self pity. It can also be seen as a portrait of a depressive average man living his life in autopilot. Life is a very heavy hammer to bear...
A slow, understated character study, that somehow still manages to be captivating and devastating, thanks to the realistic depiction of the existential terror and depression of daily life and middle-age crisis. The protagonist's deep isolation is accentuated by his inability to form meaningful interaction with his family, and his feeble attempt to substitute it with financial or shallow and insincere exchanges.
nesse recorte melancólico da vida adulta, erwin abre as portas de sua vida nos mostrando todo o fracasso do "american way of life" ou, ainda, "canadian way of life". de certo modo, ao assistir how heavy this hammer, sentimos que estamos muito próximos de erwin - talvez mais próximos dele do que sua própria esposa, filhos e animais.