**folks I’m too busy to do this at the moment; i’ll get it together soon, write up the theme, and send it back around! in the meantime if you have thoughts, don’t hesitate to let me know!**
There’s a genre of film that I don’t have a name for, but it goes something like this:
Society is unravelling. Our relationships are threadbare and worn. We spend a lot of our time detached, separated by distances. We have encounters with other people but we miss opportunities to really connect. Then a random or arbitrary set of circumstances, events, or encounters brings us together in a chain, or converging on an place in space and time, or we are implicated in something beyond our control… And our individual choices then offer us an opportunity to change the sitaution, each other, and possibly heal or at least redeem ouselves, and with that humanity.
The film-makers would include Inarritu, PT Anderson, Kieslowski, Haneke, Wai, among others. I think of them as upside down crime movies, because they are Whodunnits or Whydunnits in which the act is a gift not a theft. Films would include Babel, AmoresPerros, Red, Chunking Express, Magnolia, Crash, Code Unknown, Cache, Amelie, and a whole ton of others.
Perhaps the whole thing could be an homage of sorts to Altman, whose Nashville and Shortcuts might set this whole thing up.
We could cover the use of
–situations on which characters converge as if in drawn by some inevitable reckoning
–character choices based not an obvious and plot-driven motive, but revealing an inner humanity that resolves plot points as if by chance
–happy accidents, accidents that provide redemptive possibilities, conflicts that can be resolved by means other than opposition and violence
–narratives built on subtexts and subplots, each with their own logic, but woven together to create a sort of uplifting and transcendental story based in a kind of it-could-never-happen-like-that-reality
–a sense that the film-maker wishes to address social issues and is doing it through individual story lines
Interested? Leave a comment. I’m thinking Feb 10 – 17. Each blogger covers a director, film, or some aspect of the genre.