A masterwork of transfixing beauty from Lisandro Alonso. One of the most gorgeous looking films of the decade too. And Viggo Mortensen is like the most overlooked actor ever. He actually speaks two languages in this one. None of those are english. This proves that his range goes way over the US. Highly recommend this poetic odyssey.
This is a movie of hallucinatory strangeness, often playing like a structural film experiment in how far apart you can separate people and have them be in the same frame. A maximalism in landscape and color (and barking seals) combines with a minimalism in plot and dialog to create one of the only truly dreamlike experiences in cinema. The startling coda transforms the movie into an authentic surrealist masterpiece.
I was transfixed watching this enormous, beautiful film. The story should have kept on going as I thought the ending was too abrupt. But still, this film confirms my thoughts on Alonso's work, a director of Conradian sensibilities who gives you so much freedom some people may not know what to do with it, so what's a gift for some may be a torture to others. To me, it's the best experience I had with a film all year.
A surreal and existential cry, as much about the cragginess of the landscape as a man's anguish and determination or the impotence of reason. Alonso's rich, filmic color and academy ratio emphasize the surroundings and man's inconsequential positioning therein.
Lisandro Alonso, known for films such as Liverpool, has certainly developed his approach to film and his style. Jauja is still slow and contemplative. But Alonso has inserted a proper fictional narrative into the film, which distinguishes Jauja from his earlier films, which are almost pure observations of people's day-to-day activities. Also, the framing is superb. More thoughts on my blog: http://goo.gl/np5CLf
The formal affectation it's too obvious and allocative and the final coda annoyingly symbolic, being a raccord to the old lady's speech in off, about the unknown and the becoming. It's interesting how geology imposes to the fictional premises, but the best, by far, is the sound, where the elements of the world densify the space of the viewer's visibility: the sea, the wind, insects, the emptiness.
The ambiguity of dream doubles freedom in rapture and yearning, like a Feuilladian mirror: a reverberation conducted by an exploring solitude penetrating meta-narrative territories. To exhaust cinema possibilities is to flash back an absolute indistinction, a blinding light that blesses. Is Jauja that hallucinatory force capable of curbing the essence with the mystery of a squandery wholeness?