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Danish film again, and making fun of dogs

Of course, when you get your first wide angle lens you have to get the cheap shots out of your system, like those that make fun of your dog.

Formerly good looking dog as part deer

Ran across The Boss of It All, a relatively new Lars Von Trier. I though it would be appropriate to watch this while the Academy Awards were on.

As per usual, Lars did not disappoint. This was another subversion of cinema which was depending on your view brilliant or trivial. I am not certain that this was momentous in any way but what I found most exhilarating about the idea was simply that it was new and different.
And again within the context of the Danish film industry where everything I see, whether arty or genre, seems fresh.

What Lars did was randomize the camera movement within some constraints. So though the camera was pointed in a direction then for some time it would move without any directorial control. What this means is that actors would not know if they were in the shot or if their heads were cut off. Of course some of the sequences were unusable but overall it looks pretty good.

Part of me finds this absurd. Trier finds it liberating in the sense that it removes the traditional shot framing that directs the viewer and to a sense limits the viewer’s choices. It certainly does roughen up the experience and make it seem more immediate. And it is certainly consistent with Lars’ similar experiments with all aspects of filmmaking.

But again, my great enjoyment of this film was partly just that it was for me quite entertaining (with that typical undermining of expectations that he delights in) and that it brought you back to film as a conscious art.

I have nothing against good entertaining film whether it is something like Hurt Locker or Adventureland or even Dead Snow but they are still caught up in pulling in and distracting the viewer more than making them think. And there might be many films out there but those of us who believe that questioning and reflecting, and even frustration, should be part of the experience, are not being served well by the machine.

One comment on “Danish film again, and making fun of dogs

  1. […] of his films, (heartily recommend his unfinished television series The Kingdom, The Idiots, and Boss of It All) he is one of the few working directors who both manage to get their films some sort of […]

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