Escaping Their Conditions Through Personal Observations

Escaping Their Conditions Through Personal Observations
09 agosto 10:15 2018 Imprimir

By Roger Costa


Seen through the eyes of the youngest boy of a dysfunctional family, and his two brothers, this lyrical, visually-arresting drama scores high with its depiction of early sexuality. Director Jeremiah Zagar’s debut deeply captures the essence, the fearing, anxiety and effervescent desire of a pre-teen learning of his capabilities and preferences, as he seeks in each of the members a perfect role model. The kid escapes the harsh reality of his parents’ constant, violent confrontations, resulting on the lack of understanding and care, through the weirdly fantastical images he draws based on his reactions toward what he sees and feels. Though he’s completely into the male-adventures and misbehavior he shares with his brothers, Jonah also cultivates a sensible approach to feminine tendencies, expressed as he develops a strange interest for a neighbor much older than him. The entire cast gives profoundly convincing performances, but the show belongs to Evan Rosado with his big blue eyes, exquisite face and total control on the inner struggles of his character, crafting a marvelous, hypnotizing breakthrough turn as our young protagonist. Winner of the Next Innovator Award at this year’s Sundance, Zagar conceived a magically structured modern fable about discovering yourself, while exploring issues on how childhood is affected by adults’ decisions and compulsive habits. (The Orchard. 8/17. Angelika Film Center and The Landmark at 57 West.)


The camera follows a woman walking anxiously through the destruction of war circa 1944 Nazi-occupied France, as she makes saddened observations, while longing for her imprisoned husband and doubting whether he lives or not. Enhanced, atmospheric, gorgeously structured with astonishing angles, Alexis Kavyrchine’s cinematography is probably one of the best works done this year, it gives the story layers of sensuality, mystery and uneasiness, which accompanied by the violin score, results in a voluptuous, magnetic experience. Based on the semi-autobiographical novel by Marguerite Duras, it unveils the emotions and distress of a woman living on the edge of madness as she collects important details on the last years of war, deeply exposing social, moral and political aspects of that era. Mélanie Thierry is brilliantly enigmatic as the author, delving into her hallucinations, keeping up with her decisive role as part of the Resistance movement and totally engaged on a tempting connection to a French Nazi collaborator, played by a quite melancholic, magnificent Benoît Magimel. Writer-Director Emmanuel Finkiel’s fifth feature film is his most accomplished to date: he firmly crafts this seductive thriller with preciseness and perfect chemistry on its development, the tension, the uncertainty, the hidden emotions, and the tragic love story as the main conductor. An outstanding period piece, it also displays a memorable mosaic of that era’s social transformation. (Music Box Films. 8/17. Film Forum and Film Society of Lincoln Center.)


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