Cook, The Thief, His Wife And Her Lover
there’s one thing certain about this film – it’s not your standard fare. not only is the subject matter a bit out of the ordinary, but the style, too, is decidedly different. not better, or worse, or over-stylized, really, but different. half of it is shot like a filmed play…lots of scrolling dolly shots in front of three sets that are linked side by side. in the first half there isn’t much three-dimensional camera movement like there is in most films and, with the exception of the bathroom scenes, the action takes place in the aforementioned group of three sets (outside, the kitchen, and the dining room). there’s a definite concerted effort to use color, though i’m not entirely sure about the reasons. lots of red which i suppose could speak to two of the dominate themes – love and rage. at the half way point the film shifts a bit. in the first half horizontal movement was dominant (that scrolling i talked about) and in the second we see a lot more movement into the scenes (and into different scenery as well). the tone, too, has changed. the second half is decidedly serious whereas the first half, at least for me, was more comic because the excesses of the thief were directed towards less sympathetic characters. once we see his sadistic rage touch his wife in more than a passing way we can’t go back to laughing about his tirades. it’s a good looking movie that has plenty to like, but didn’t resonate with me so much as to consider it great. i like what it offered me while i was watching it and i will remember its style and the some of the subject matter (i don’t want to give it away, but it’s not easily forgettable), but it didn’t have that special something that would have made it great. oh, and i think this was the first film i’ve seen that was scored by michael nyman (piano – which i still haven’t seen) and i liked his stuff…he’s a minimalist like philip glass.