TSP2021: Memoria

I’ve seen three Apichatpong Weerasethakul movies before, and they’ve all been great, if I remember correctly. Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives, of course, has the best movie title ever. This looks very Apichatpong Weerasethakul in the first few minutes, so *crosses fingers*.

I have absolutely no fucking idea what is going on here, and I love it!

This film gives you so few clues as to what’s going on (or perhaps just clues and nothing more) that it makes my head buzz with “is she dead? is this a dream? is she dying and trying to make sense of things? is this just normal reality and nothing is strange really? is her sister really dying? wha whaaaa” in the most delightful way.

Not like a mystery box movie, but it’s very open.

I love the way Apichatpong Weerasethakul films these scenes. Most of them are like this:

That is, he starts the camera before the actors arrive, film them while they’re there, and then continues to film the shot after the actors have left. Just a few seconds on either side, but it’s so lovely.

I’m typing this after the fact, because I was too riveted by the movie to do any typing while watching it. But if I had been typing anything at this point I would have said “this is the best movie I’ve seen in yonks! if you’d have tailored a film to me, this would have been it!”

Until two thirds of this movie, I was so into it I literally plotzed!

But then we got to the … third act? I guess? And it’s fine! It’s good! But it’s not as way beyond fantastic as the first two thirds.

But it’s a lovely movie! For the first two thirds I was thinking I had to buy a die that goes up to 7. But then the last third happened and I didn’t have to do that after all.

This post is part of The Tilda Swinton Project.

Memoria. Apichatpong Weerasethakul. 2021.

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