Whatever minor flaws exist in the narrative or the acting are bracketed (and pardoned) by the exceptional camerawork in the rocky shores of a Scottish island. A great treatise on community solidarity and its eventual decline, its unsurpassed vitality and spiritual tenor (in a place abandoned by God) continues to impress. Editing is ingenious (as in the fatality scene) and there is a chilling funeral sequence. Superb!
>>> En grande partie documentaire, cette oeuvre peu connue du fameux réalisateur britannique, entièrement parlée en langue gaélique, ne souffre pas de la comparaison avec le célèbre film de Robert J. Flaherty, le magnifique "homme d'Aran" même si de toute évidence, on se place plusieurs degrés en-dessous... www.cinefiches.com
I'm partial to departure films, maybe because mobility and nomadics are so fashionable and happy-go-lucky relocation shouldn't pose a problem, or due to last century's mass deportations and demographic movements which made us love displacement when nothing could be done against it, or thanks to tourist leaflets preaching that grass is greener everywhere else. Films like " The Edge" or Osyka's "Stone Cross" are filled
A great visual experience for anyone serious about cinema. It plays as part documentary, part melodrama but the images of the craggy cliffs, the farming community, the fog rolling in, the spare lifestyle all immerse the audience on this Scottish island. Powell's use of facial closeups, superimposed images and dissolves are quite innovative. The only quibble is the melodrama about the sick baby towards the end.
Striking imagery can't redeem this film that surprising (for Powell) struggles with a weak story and even weaker performances that miss some obvious emotional beats. The cliff race is the best part of the film. I feel this would have worked better as a silent picture.
A solid debut, but nothing to write home about. Watch more for the beautiful location shots than for the story. The actors were all fine, just found myself not caring much about any of the characters. Probably my least favorite Powell film I have watched, but all the aesthetics that we know him for are already in place. Extra star for cinematography alone. A portrait of a time since lost.
Couldn't help but think about Trier's Breaking the Waves while watching this depressing Scottish drama. The people-free shots of rushing water and wind-blown grass were beautiful. I was definitely more interested in the visual imagery and filmmaking aspects of this movie than the dribbling plot.