L.I.E. down

This is one of those films that must be hard to fund — films like the
Woodsman, The Magdalene Sisters, War Zone (by Tim Roth) or Monster —
but which, when made, distributed, and seen, recoups any expense and
undresses any doubt. The problem with films like this is that they
involve inappropriate undressing, be it by pedophiles, insitutions,
families, or serial killers. The appeal of the genre is in some ways
the unthinkable, unacceptable, the distasteful and the unwatchable.
It’s that last part, the unwatchable, that creates tension, serving as
a kind of offscreen reference that anchors the film’s story and becomes
its power for not being seen.

(Herzog’s Grizzly Man reveled in this, for it was a film about a guy
who was eaten, along with his girlfriend, by the very Grizzlies he
believed himself to be protecting, and everybody knew it. That was the
whole catch: to know something that is not going to be shown, to be
compelled by it, and to rent and watch this film knowing that it’s a
long set up to a final act we will not be allowed to see. Can it be
that a film such as that prepares us for something horrible? Do we
become complicit with it then, as consumers of that preparation?)

Complicitness. This film shows us what happens. It is simple in its
presentation, and for that complicates its subject matter. Because it
does not plant a stake in the ground and draw clear, distinct and
straightforward lines between right and wrong. Those are the films that
are hard to fund. But better to watch. For they complicate their
concepts, distribute perspectives and motivations, and sometimes even
put the viewer harm’s way.

Technorati tags: , , ,, , , ,

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *