3.8 stars. One of the most quietly virtuoso débuts I've ever seen - the flashy camera work and cuts of the French New Wave seems ham-fisted compared to the elegant interweaving of pans and mirror shots we get here. It's also remarkably engaging for a film that sounds from a plot description as though it could be a trifle dry - though I suspect that's intentional. Women's work delivered deftly. Do give it a watch!
I didn't really care about the two main characters in Something Different until suddenly . . . I did. Vera Chytilova works some magic here, making you gradually invested and engrossed in two women with quite different problems, one a wife frustrated in her marriage and the other a female gymnast dealing with pressure and tougher training.
Perhaps it is egregiously hackneyed to refer to old movies as forward-looking, but I mean, Christ, come on! SOMETHING DIFFERENT is hacking a new path w/ a machete-shaped caméra-stylo! The first thing we have to do is discard the pantomime of Cold War polarities (Marcuse-style) and just accede that the tendency of "rational" societies is to put women in boxes. Chytilová looks in boxes, practically invents inspection.
An excellent debut feature by Chytilova which deserves to rank among the finest debut features. Whilst not as visually inventive as the astonishing films that would shortly follow (The Restaurant The World, Daisies and Fruit of Paradise), Chytilova ensures that every shot remains cinematographically interesting to the viewer. Its probably Chytilova's most humane film too. A must watch for Chytilova fans.
One of these documentary-style nearly plotless things the Czechs were so fond of in the '60s. The lives of two women observed and compared: a housewife who alleviates her domestic bliss with an affair with a younger man and a champion gymnast as she goes through her rigorous training session. Has a way of lodging in the mind: I liked it more on reflection than while watching it.