The movie was easy to watch. Even with the various family conflicts it had a comfortable feel. The titular song plays as a soundtrack while the dad Bill lies asleep until his daughter Amy turns down the stereo. Bresson quote "Image and sound must not support each other, but must work each in turn through a sort of relay." On the tram Taryn says "I forgot where we were for a minute." The mundane becomes transporting.
Loved the tone and atmosphere created by the setting and story. Brings back lots of memories for me. The scene with the father playing guitar in the basement was definitely one that will stick with me. Unfortunately I wasn't really sold on any of the characters, and although the story held my interest, it left me wanting more. I wish it were an hour longer to finish what it had to say.
I used to be darker is not a film that major issues tied to it. It is an understated and subdued film. Handling personal matters with an even hand and steady tone. But the film falls short on a couple characters, either being over or underacted. In a film that needs all of their performances to be on point, it fails in this respect. The film also lacked in saying new things, I've heard it before, and better.
It was nice to see Baltimore again, and I was reminded of why I'll probably always be attracted to it aesthetically: cluttered with creaking, wooden stairs, and stilted anger. I kept thinking about white the cast is. I probably would have really liked the movie if it was darkly funny, but it's not, and it's mostly alienating - but I guess that's maybe part of the point.
I didn't love this film but I did enjoy the dignity it affords its characters. Also, I hafta say, this is the first truly convincing movie I have ever seen in my life about musicians. I believe these people play that music, listen to that music, care about that music, live for that music. 100%. And that's something.
Hyper-realist micro-indie with cred (title via Bill Callahan, acting by non-acting lesser known Oldham brother) has a stringent purity but is so meticulously uninvolving that I suppose it brings home the tedium of strangers’ domestic lives. Sometimes I wish I were friends with more cool musician types, but after watching a film like this I see they also lead banal lives and can only express themselves in song.
To bear witness to Matthew Porterfield's progression through his 3 features is incredible, it's remarkable growth. In this film, he's refined his observations on human details, moving from spoken questions to more subtle revelations. The music is quite fine, too.