Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Holy Motors: The Faculty of Film

With the Oscar's happening this Sunday and my disappointment that Holy Motors was not recognized at this gathering I feel it's about time I write about this glorious film.

It is, for me, a true love letter to the art of filmmaking. It allows the viewer to take a long ride with Monsieur Oscar, driving into many forms of cinema and the very act of honesty and authenticity in film today. All the while breaking every rule and paying due homage to all the wonder and magic that is film.

There are moments that require mentioning, because I feel like these attributed to why this film spoke to me in the fashion it did. There is a point where a man visits M. Oscar and says "it looks like you're getting tired...if your performance continues to disappoint, maybe you should stop..." Oscar replies he wont until he is dead..."it is the beauty of the act." How perfect is this? why tired? why would that matter? poor performance? why is this even contested? how can one even think to dispute the beauty of the act?

Another is when Oscar talks about the "machines" once being bigger than himself and now they're smaller than our heads.  It's mentioned more then once that "these machines" aren't wanted anymore as if to question why. The very performance of Denis Lavant is heart breaking because it's as if he represents pure truth in the act itself. Why he hasn't got extensive praise for his performance is beyond me and it just goes to show how rare acting like that is in today's cinema. As if to say most audiences today can't even comprehend such an ability.

The film itself begins in a theatre, whilst a child is present, as are the hounds as they prowl through the audience threatening to snatch them all. Overall this film captivated me, it ensnared my thoughts about film and filmmaking, and transfigured every notion I had about contemporary cinema's path. Forget ideas of narrative, because unfortunately our thoughts about it only condition us to assume it must be undeviating and straight as an arrow by today's standards. However remember your heart and open it up to the grandeur of the act.   Film is not dead my friends, it is only hiding, as if in a safe house, you just have to go find it.

Happy moviegoing folks!

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