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You Were Never Really Here

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csage97

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Reply #30 on: April 17, 2018, 12:20:31 AM
Well, by an unforeseen turn of circumstances, I was able to see this movie! Samsong, I really like your thoughts. "Brisk 85 minute art house revisionist film noir that flaunts style for days," indeed, and I'm thankful that movies like these are being made.

This is my fav sort of film, where the performances and environments inform as much about the protagonist'z headspace as anything, better than any exposition might. Weirdly, I found myself relating it to a Paddy Chayefsky'z Marty. In the sense of swirling loneliness, and that it felt modern and ready to eviscerate the metropolis/city as toxic to human spirit, its gestalt empowering all the wrong sorts of ambition.

The quick cuts to Joe's time in the military, or his memory from that time. That's where I was sold on its staccato beats. Then, the underwater bit, well, that's poetry to me.

Jonny... A fkn master. Even if the film's not playing in your area, check out the score.

Yep, great reflections there. I found myself thinking that the photography is excellent and beautiful, but then feeling cold from the swirling loneliness and modern evisceration the metropolis/city that's toxic to human spirit.

The underwater bit was amazingly photographed. I'm really impressed. Poetry indeed.

The effects of violence are so honestly shown: this is the heartbreak of the film's few final scenes.

In addition to seeing beauty and feeling distance and coldness, those stark images of blood and the physicality of the human body were harrowing and communicated Joe's headspace, as WorldForgot mentioned above. This is very much a visual film. There's barely any dialogue. I love the anamorphic photography and the way that Lynne Ramsay uses focusing and bokeh.

And then there were moments when Joe's depression and suicidal ideation really came through. The persistent blandness of experience and sense of no hope were expertly communicated, and then those "staccato" cuts to quick flashbacks really captured the way that PTSD flashbacks can intrude unexpectedly and continue to haunt the psyche. The scene in which Joaquin cries in the diner really got me, and he did a great job there.


BB

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Reply #31 on: April 23, 2018, 09:17:10 PM
Perhaps I’m just overly familiar with the various incarnations of the material, but this felt way too thin to me. The story was chopped to shit, and too many scenes try to skate by on atmosphere alone and there just isn’t enough there. Joaquin is good as always but he’s been far better in far better films. This character just isn’t especially compelling or memorable. Some nice visuals, etc, but nothing extraordinary. Perhaps my feelings will change, but I’m pretty disappointed. Just bounced right off me.

Think I can see where you're coming from even though I liked it a lot. There's clearly a more plot-focussed iteration in the mix and at a few points I thought the movie was gonna snap into a different mode but it really sticks to its guns. Atmosphere alone is right. Pure cinema, all that. Applied to subject matter that seldom gets this treatment. Rather than tell you a story about this guy doing these things, it locks you in the guy's fucked up head and just sort of keeps you there for a while. Things happen but they're secondary to being there with him. 


jonas

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Reply #32 on: April 24, 2018, 11:25:45 AM
This was supposed to come to my local theater this Friday and just saw they delayed it until May 4th. Anticipation was so high I took half the day off to catch an early showing, not happy!

Drawbacks for living in a small city (Portland, ME) with one art house theater  :(
"Mein Führer, I can walk!" - Dr. Strangelove


Something Spanish

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Reply #33 on: May 10, 2018, 03:29:50 PM
This was very good; the images and mood lingering in my thoughts almost 24 hours later. I'm not fully convinced it's the masterpiece I'd like it to be, but have not ruled that thought out at all. Feels like the structure was toyed with excessively in post, the conventional material deliberately chucked in favor of creating something new, a moody spin on the vigilante genre. The entire film put me in a trance, the many tracking shots with no actors on screen adding to that effect. The running time, about 80 minutes without credits, is perfect, any longer and Ramsay's camera techniques would border on pretentious. There are a few weird scenes that I can't say I'd seen in a movie before, such as a moment Joe has with a baddie he just shot, that help the movie stand out, if the visual narrative doesn't stand out enough for you. Overall what was really good is the mood sustained by Ramsay, I think she really found the movie in editing. I loved it while watching it and love it now while reflecting on it. Phoenix is a big reason why, he's interesting in every frame and carries the movie without much effort, remaining naturally sympathetic. You really get a sense of who Joe is with nary an expositional word of dialogue uttered. It's just an inventive, melancholic piece of arthouse grind, made by one of the more visual directors working in the medium.


jonas

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Reply #34 on: May 17, 2018, 01:04:14 PM
Finally was able to see it and I'm really glad I saw it in a theater, it was well worth the wait.

Fantastically intense and focused, I really didn't know where it was going in the last 1/2 hour and that's a great thing.

Music was awesome too! Will try to see it again in the theater before it leaves. I have a feeling seeing it on a smaller/home screen will lose some of the intensity, especially with the sound design and music.
"Mein Führer, I can walk!" - Dr. Strangelove


eward

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Reply #35 on: May 29, 2018, 11:30:05 AM
Finally got a chance to watch this again and am happy to report that whatever experiential blinders I'd had on previously have been totally eradicated, thus I WAS ABLE TO FULLY ENTER AND LOVE THIS MOVIE. A forward-lurching, psychologically-splintered, gorgeously grotesque odyssey through the nightmare of one man's existence...

SPOILER

...with one of the most terrifyingly upbeat endings in recent memory. Proud to have been a part of it (I made those sides every morning like a motherfucker!)
« Last Edit: May 29, 2018, 04:12:58 PM by Jeremy Blackman »
"Do you laugh at jealousy?"

"No, I don't even laugh at seasickness! I happen to regard jealousy as the seasickness of passion."


samsong

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Reply #36 on: May 29, 2018, 01:42:41 PM
love that ending, too.

SPOILER-y
sometimes you just gotta tell yourself it's a beautiful day and finish your milkshake.

glad a revisit was rewarding.


Jeremy Blackman

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Reply #37 on: June 07, 2018, 06:49:56 PM
My first impression was very similar to eward's. The movie seemed too thin. But I've been warming to it quite a bit. This has some of the most idiosyncratic scenes I've seen in a while. And some of those images and moments are just not leaving my mind. I strongly suspect I would love this on a second watch. It probably is a masterpiece.

I'm pretty torn, because I wish this were an hour longer, at least. It left me wanting more. This is probably misguided, though, because the magic of the movie is the way it forces you to fill in the gaps. That's how it gets its hooks in you. (Which is not to say it leaves you guessing. It gives you just enough information.)

SPOILERS

I hesitate to say this, because it's pretty dumb, but wouldn't a sequel be awesome?

I would also accept another movie with this story entirely from the girl's perspective.
"Hunger is the purest sin"


csage97

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Reply #38 on: June 10, 2018, 10:47:17 PM
Finally got a chance to watch this again and am happy to report that whatever experiential blinders I'd had on previously have been totally eradicated, thus I WAS ABLE TO FULLY ENTER AND LOVE THIS MOVIE. A forward-lurching, psychologically-splintered, gorgeously grotesque odyssey through the nightmare of one man's existence...

SPOILER

...with one of the most terrifyingly upbeat endings in recent memory. Proud to have been a part of it (I made those sides every morning like a motherfucker!)

I knew you would come around, eward!


cronopio2

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Reply #39 on: June 26, 2018, 09:02:47 AM
this is very very good. to me it worked as a thought experiment on how to re-represent violence's devasting/not-fun aspects in a society increasingly accustomed to it in audiovisual forms. agony and suffering have always necessary subjects in art, but their aestheticization is more problematic than ever.


Jeremy Blackman

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Reply #40 on: January 15, 2019, 02:39:48 AM
I strongly suspect I would love this on a second watch. It probably is a masterpiece.

Correct.

This hit me much harder on rewatch. Because everything actually makes sense. And there is no expectations game. Strongly recommend revisiting this if it didn't quite work for you the first time.
"Hunger is the purest sin"


Jeremy Blackman

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Reply #41 on: January 15, 2019, 05:41:50 PM
Specifically:

Spoiler: ShowHide
I finally understood why Joe is so affected by Nina's story and why he has such an outsized level of empathy and attachment to her.

(1) Joe is still tormented by the domestic abuse he suffered. Notice that Nina's coping mechanism mirrors his (counting).
(2) He's haunted by all the child sex abuse that's he's seen doing his job.
(3) He has PTSD from his experiences in war, where he saw at least one child commit violence.

Nina hits all 3 of these pretty hard. The first two are nothing new for Joe, but when he realizes that Nina's been forced to become a murderer herself, and that she might have even learned from his example, it's just too much. (This is when he breaks down in the bedroom near the end.)

It breaks his heart because he knows from experience how difficult her life is going to be.

But I might also speculate that he's deeply affected by her resilience—perhaps an emotional strength that he never quite had. Notice how in the end he is entirely dependent on her hope and optimism. That is, in fact, illustrated explicitly.
"Hunger is the purest sin"


eward

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Reply #42 on: January 16, 2019, 01:00:10 PM
Saw this again recently and, yeah, nail on the fuckin head, man. Happy to have been even a tiny insignificant part of it.
"Do you laugh at jealousy?"

"No, I don't even laugh at seasickness! I happen to regard jealousy as the seasickness of passion."


ObliqueStrategies

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Reply #43 on: March 03, 2019, 06:31:32 PM
A little late - and I havent seen the movie yet, but I just watched the international trailer and noticed a possible reference to the Yoko Ono album "season of glass" at 1:31 could be a coincidence but I thought i'd mention it. looking forward to watching this one soon.