There are films that are weird, like David Lynch weird, where their main intention seems to be to scare the shit out of the audience by distorting its sense of reality. In order to be successful in achieving the true weirdness, one that would be both thought-provoking and fucking scary, one needs to consequently lead to mislead its public. It’s a complex process and both the filmmaker and the viewer have to be equally involved in co-creating it. The weirdness comes from the collaborations of minds, but in order for it to even start, the filmmaker needs to tease the viewer by providing them with a plot that makes sense. Once the plot is revealed, it is up to the viewer to bring the jigsaw together, which simountaneously the filmmaker shatters all over the room. But the result is always successful.
Unless! Unless someone decides to skip all these steps and instead release a film solely based on the idea of weirdness for weirdness’ sake. This is how you make Magic Magic.

Oh my God, there are no words to describe how stupid Magic Magic is. It goes from nowhere to nothing and it just shits all over its audience’s brain by pretending to have twists (which are definitely surprising simply because they are so out-of-place that noone could possibly predict them) and a story (which is not a story, because the characters are non-existent and unnecessary and the whole outline must had been written by a horse). Magic Magic doesn’t respect its audience and even a weak attempt of acting (which is still stronger than the director’s attempt to make this film work) from Michael Cera doesn’t save it.
There’s not much that can be said about. It tells a story (already an overstatement) of a girl who goes to South America (ghosts, voodoo, you guess it- it will get cliche all the way) to visit her cousin and meet her friends. The cousin, Emily Browning, whose purpose in this film is to look like herself, can’t go to a trip she invite Alicia to and so Alicia has to spend the next however long with the cousin’s crazy friends. And now, I have no fucking idea what’s happening. Emily Browning’s friends are kind of psycho, kind of sadistic, kind of stupid. They are definitely neither of those in full, but there are bits and pieces of some sort of horror layout going on behind all this. Alicia is clearly not welcomed and of course not being able to catch a signal with her phone doesn’t help either. Finally, Browning returns but not to save her. Alicia goes ape-shit and everyone ignores it. And then (spoiler) she dies. The end.

Ok, maybe it’s not as straightforward as that. Before we get to the major events (ape-shitness, death), we have to travel through the road untravelled before: The Random Road. From cheap scares to creepy mirrors, Magic Magic has its all. And why is it called Magic Magic? If the reason really lies in the last scene, I want to say one thing: Fuck You, Silva (I must say that no matter how much I hated Magic Magic, it doesn’t stop me from wanting to see other films by this director; the titles are fascinating: Old Cats sounds like my type of a film).
Magic Magic is my nightmare. I would rather eat my own hand than see it again. So here you are. Should you see it? Your own responsibility.

By Amelie

There’s a new era coming in the world of film. It hasn’t been officially stated yet, so let me be the first person to do so. Films are changing and they are changing for better.

After years and years of crap films during which the filmmakers focused more on the development of special effects (3D, a lot of frames per second, etc) rather than portraying an interesting and thought-provoking story, year 2013 came. In my opinion, one of the best cinematic year in a very long time. The Oscars line-up was amazing. Every film presented a completely new approach to the topic or/and proven the directors’ technical skills. They were ambitious, provoking and beautifully made. Picking a film out of the bunch which deserved the award seemed simply impossible. I don’t even remember what actually won (don’t take me there), but I know that apart from Gravity, I was happy with every single film there was. But there is another set of films that haven’t been noticed in the mainstream world (how pretentious it sounds, I don’t even want to know) and these films are the ones I want to talk to you about. Actually, one in particular. The Double.

The Double is officially a 2013 film and yet, it only came out last week in the UK. Instead of dwelling on its plot (which is complex and rewarding), I will move straight to the reason why I am writing this post. The Double is perfect.

Just look at it!

Dimmed, depressing colours, frowned foreheads, metallic edges. It is David Lynch meets Berberian Sound Studio. Or better! It is as if Franz Kafka wrote an interpretation of Fyodor Dostoyevski novella and then David Lynch directed it.

Jesse Eisenberg, whom I love no matter what they say, is casted perfectly as Kafkesque individual against the system. The world in the Double is the world of dark absurd. People don’t listen, they just do things they’ve been doing their whole lives simply because…they’ve been doing them their whole lives. Nobody questions anything and nobody seems to notice the absurdity of their situation. When James Simon, Simon James’ double, appears at the Colonel’s factory (I’m not sure how to better describe the place the characters are working at- it is a pointless factory relying on a circular paradox- the film explains it through a short commercial which Simon shows his mother), sooo…when Simon James’ double appears at the Colonel’s human factory (or the factory of humans) nobody notices the similarities between the both. Or rather, everyone notices but nobody cares. Simon is confused, lost and terrified but he is simply told that ‘he is a kind of non person’ and instead of protesting further, he decides to…deal with it. Surprising choice of the main hero isn’t that surprising when we get into the depths of his motives. Simon’s individuality is under threat and the more he fights with it, the more of a non-person he becomes. By attempting to copy his double’s actions and personality, he loses himself, disappears, turns into a ghost.

The Double is a difficult and ambitious film, but how much is worth sitting through with a frowned forehead and boiling brain cells, I can’t express enough. It is provoking and challenging, but also extremely rewarding. Most importantly, it makes Dostoyevski’s story once again alive, and relevant to our modern days. It is a masterpiece.

If my review hasn’t been persuasive, here is a trailer for the Double, which is honey to eyes itself. Bon Apetit!

By Amelie

Visitors isn’t a film. It is a meditation. I have to admit that revealing the details of this project might make it sound unappealing (another excuse for me not to write a synopsis, as always) and Visitors are definitely worth…thinking about.
That is not to say that the man behind the two weirdest documentaries you might ever seen (Koyaanisqatsi and Naqoyqatsi- you spell it right) has done everything he could to make his point. Visitors is a meditation on humanity: who we are and what we do. And of course, the titled how would other see us. Visitors offers us a unique insight into humans- as seen by the uncomprehending eyes of an alien. Faces, movements, expressions- what do they mean?
We see faces of people. One after another glaring into the camera eye. In the background, a true musical gem- Phillip Glass’ soundtrack is a masterpiece.

And then, there is a watcher who is also being watched. A gorilla, uncannily similar and yet diametrically different from us. But what you make of it belongs to you. It is your responsibility. Visitors don’t speak, don’t tell, don’t guide us through the blackness of the film. Visitors observe.
It is definitely a film worth seeing for the fact that it creates a mood so hard to get in the modern world. It gives you space to fill with thoughts and emotions. We search for ourselves in the faces of strangers. We search for ourselves in the surface of the moon. We watch.

By Amelie