The Five Senses (2000) from Johnny Web (Uncle Scoopy; Greg Wroblewski) and Tuna
|Scoop's notes in white:
This film comprises several stories in the urban apartment environment, each of them based on one part of a related set.
Is it Kieslowski's "Decalogue"? Nope, instead of the ten commandments, it's based on the five senses.
The precise Robbins Recipe: "Decalogue" meets "The Sweet Hereafter".
This Polish-Canadian director obviously worships both the Polish Kieslowski and the Canadian Atom Egoyan. Well, by golly, if you're gonna choose a role model, those two guys are a sight better than Ed Wood, but you know you're going to choose the Art House Circuit.
|Each of the tangential stories involves one of the senses in some way. One man thinks he can smell love. A doctor is losing his hearing. A cake designer is in love with a chef. You get the idea. A masseuse is there for the touch segment, and a voyeur represents sight. Some of the characters know each other. The stories are loosely held together by the fact that a little girl disappeared from their apartment building, and that story dominates the Toronto news during this time period. (For example, the voyeur is making a move on the woman who was babysitting the little girl when she was lost.)||
|I'm already written my own Kieslowski
film. It is a requirement for anyone with a Polish last
name. Since Three Colors, Five Senses, Seven Deadly Sins,
and Ten Commandments are already taken, mine will be
called Nine Positions. I will use the baseball diamond as
my allegory for urban life, with Home representing Home.
I toyed for a while with the idea of letting Second Base
represent Home, but I'm just not capable of thinking
outside the (batter's) box. Each of the nine players will
have a story, and they will occasionally intersect,
mostly when they run into each other trying to catch a
foul ball. The pitcher will represent the forces that
oppose us in life. The first baseman, brute strength. And
Finally, it will all come down to Home, the place where dwells the catcher, the ultimate symbol of the worker in the industrial revolution, forced into harsh conditions by his capitalist masters, struggling only to finish his job and protect his Home from those would violate it. Look for a brilliant cameo by DeNiro as the Third Base Coach. Some people say that the richly realized visual poetry of his bunt signal alone was touching enough to win him an Oscar nomination.
I'll have it finished as soon as I find the correct Celtic Folk Music, properly eerie, and evoking the feeling of loneliness each of the ballplayers feels when he's batting. I'm thinking of using the spooky Scottish moors to play the part of Right Field.
yeah, the Senses movie. If you like Kieslowski and
Egoyan, you will like it. It takes a long time to get
warmed to the stories, but once I did, I found them
interesting, and quite touching in some scenes. The
classical music is beautiful and often sad.
If you like more mainstream movies, pass it by, even though it is terrific. It's really about feelings, not the senses. Each of the characters is at an important point of passage in life, and they are trying to deal with it. Not really much of a storyline or any action. Some stories are left unresolved, as in real life.
By the way, is there a law in Canada which requires Molly Parker to be in every Canadian movie?
comments in yellow:
The Five Senses (2000) is arty, slow paced, and has no single plot. It is actually several separate sub-plots rolled into one film. All of the characters live in, or have business in the same apartment building, and the disappearance of a little girl provides the time line, as well as some of the sub-plots. The five senses are the theme, each sub-plot representing one of the senses. We have a gay man that can smell love, a shrink who loves classical music and is going deaf, a massage therapist, and a cake decorator in love with her Italian teacher. The entire film is more about characters and moods then story. Its strength is in filmmaking and character development, but not story-telling. The director shows real ability to let us learn about the characters as they learn about themselves, rather than in some narrative form.
One of my criteria for a film is whether there is anyone in the story I can relate to or like. This is an entire film full of characters that meet that description. This is an excellent effort from Canadian director Jeremy Podeswa.. He also wrote and produced. I hope he tries another feature length film soon.
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