(2.5 stars) The most awesome thing about this movie is the movie poster. The most annoying thing about this movie is the dreadful scoring. The rest of the movie: okay. I get it. Some interesting ideas and theories. It's all framed inside the story around a bit of a smug dude. Meh. Some high-minded ideas and I get why some people really love and adore this film. Just not my thing, I suppose.
"Zanussi is one of those authors who have known how to enrich dialogue with a religious, metaphysical, or scientific content, while still keeping it as the most everyday and trivial determination" (Deleuze, Cinema 2). This is a perfect description for Illumination and Zanussi's cinema in general that doesn't prioritise or hierarchise human experiences or science over spirit, but treats life as a mundane wonder.
Usually termed cerebral, this impressionist compendium of life, death, art, religion, science, technology, love, anger, desire, committment, politics, society, nature, reason, mysticism, soul, body and so many other dualisms and monisms, cuts deep into the riddle of existence and resurfaces triumphantly as the illumination of togetherness and freedom. A rare masterpiece, riveting in every scene and shot!
PC, rewatched. An intricate composition of images and sounds, materially consecutory, from theoretical concepts more on the geometric science of life than on a philosophy of life - life as matter and the life of matter. After so much fatigue in relation to recent films that demonstrate a total lack of sound's conception, mixing it with unbearable music, it feels good this eruptive conception of the sound.
It's straight-forward, taking leaps in time with some dream sequences in between. Though it's clear that time moves on, the main character is losing his way, and trying to search it again. But then life hits him, again & again. Props for the sound & images, it gave the whole picture a bit of an avant-garde feel.
An intense and well-written film on the concerns of a young man looking for a place in the world. Zanussi recounts a "particular" story but adds many levels through a rapid editing in which profound dialogues, conversations between scientists and even some dreamlike perspectives follow one another. In this way, it is as if we are able to enter directly into the protagonist's disquiet.
An old style, phylosophical movie about the search of the meaning of life by a student of physics, from his youth to maturity. Like a materialistic, intellectual eastern european kind of Siddharta, his journey deals with death, love, the limitations life and its paradoxes. A realistic, anti-romantic though passionate love story will lead him to some sort of paradoxical, or even cynical, "illumination".
A film festival is in order, like a Bresson film festival, a Godard film festival, a Bergman or Allen festival. This movie is about lifestyle early death, whether one can live longer by what you do, or if life is fixed. The funny part is, nobody makes these points or arguments, it is just what the movie is about.
Beautiful directing. Shed some light on personal struggle for meaning, and on the spirit of the times, but somehow not enough. It is, however, a pleasing experience for the eye. I didn't get the impression it has to do anything particular with communism tbh. Except, of course, the setting.
"Illumination" is one of those films that needs to be seen more then once.On the surface,its the simple story of a man's life,but director Krzysztof Zanussi isn't interested in the straightforward account of a life.He blends fiction with documentary, to give us an existentialist view of a life,through the thoughts of a individual. A difficult, but intriguing film,that on occasions delves into the surreal.
A simple, episodic life-story of a young man, that sets his initial belief in the study of science as the means to true knowledge against the rest of what he sees and experiences, including factory labour, marriage, 70s drug culture, electro-shock therapy, a monastery with dead bodies and glimpses of war. It has the myopic individualism of Wenders, but in Communist Poland this arguably has a political value.