Friday, September 5, 2008

Don't Look Now (1973; Nicolas Roeg)

As the story goes, many a year back I was simply an average movie guy. I was only aware of the movies cranked out by Hollywood, and most of my cinema knowledge was wrapped up in stupid ass comedies that will never go away. One fateful night (Halloween to be exact) I saw a TV series on some of the greatest horror films ever made, and at that point in my life I really hadn't ever seen a horror movie, I just wasn't interested in it. Well, as I watched them preview the movies and talk about what made them so scary, three of the films struck me in a special way. I decided that horror is where I needed to be, and I would one day see those three films. The three I am referring to are Audition (1999), Peeping Tom (1960), and last but most certainly not least... Don't Look Now (1973)

I am going to make this summary REALLY quick, so I can spend the rest of the time expressing my very non sexual feelings for this movie (they aren't sexual). A couple has a daughter and a son. The daughter drowns. Later on, they are having trouble dealing with her death, and the husband ends up seeing her again while in Venice.

Wow. Even though I had no eye for cinema at the time, I must applaud my choices for inspiration. This film is absolutely breath taking. The score is gorgeous. The camera... orgasmic (in the non sexual way).

The film so smoothly transitions from a casual day to some of the most tense scene's I have ever been graced to see. I mean, this film completely shatters the rules of using the dark. One of the most intense scenes is made in the middle of a sunny day.

The camera is half of the battle. In the first appearance of his daughter in Venice, the camera zoom is delayed, as if to not show us what is happening, but to show us literally what he sees as he double takes and has to focus. We are not voyeurs to this hellish experience; we are apart of it.

The score is mostly classical, beautifully played to match the atmosphere set by traveling through Venice. However, when it comes time to get to business they know exactly where to stick it (in a non sexual way).

At the same time as the search for the daughter begins, murders start occurring throughout Venice. At this point, each and every person we see throughout Venice is so perfectly constructed as to be considered a suspect. The awkward glances and drawn out shots of faces feel as though we are being starred at... as if they are wondering if we are catching onto their scheme.

One last part that should be brought up before concluding this, the ending is one of the most powerful endings I have ever seen. It made me want to pull down my pants and have sex with the screen (in a non sexual way).

Score: 5/5

Notes: Boobs, Blind

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