Movie Review "Solstice" - a beautiful philosophical drama, called horror
Educational Program Cinema / / December 19, 2019
On the Russian screens out the new film from the original director Ari Aster. A year ago this virtually unknown author won the audience very unusual horror "Reincarnation" - a slow and terrifying story of a family, pursued by ancestral curse.
Then the audience was divided into two categories. Some came to the delight of a complex plot and non-standard approach to the genre, others were disappointed, because the trailer promised a dynamic thriller, but it had to wait almost until the very end of the picture.
The fact that the debut Astaire part was the victim of an advertising campaign. Painting promoted as a horror film, collected in trailers all the most terrible scene. And in fact, the director has created almost Greek tragedy about the absence of a choice in life.
The story about the "reincarnation" in the context of the release of "Solstice" is a must. After Aster continues to follow the same principles and in the new work, which again promoted as horror movie. And Russian localizers even added on an ice posters "The age-old darkness awakened", not having nothing to do with the story, or to the original slogan "Yes to begin the celebration."
This creates false expectations, supported by the trailers, which again can be seen almost half of the most intense moments. And some of the scenes from the movies in the movie and did not.
In fact, the "Solstice" is not a horror, and experiment. beautiful slow movie about the search itself, filled with contrasts and requires total immersion in the atmosphere of what is happening. Precisely in order to force the viewer to take a closer look, the director several times deceived expectations.
Cheating first: the drama instead of horror
The plot begins with the fact that the girl Dani (Florence Pugh) dies all relatives. Her boyfriend Christian (Jack Raynor) have long been going to throw girlfriend, but after the tragic events decides to wait and takes her on a trip. One of my friends invited them to stay for a solstice celebration in an unusual Swedish settlement Kharga.
Arriving there, the characters are faced with a very strange order of the community. They seem to be just unusual, but then begin to frighten. And involuntarily guests become participants horrible rites.
Already, even in an attempt to retell the story lies some irony. It may seem that went out the next standard slasher - the traditional subspecies of horror movies where silly teenagers come to a terrible place, where they were killed.
It fits into stereotypes and a set of characters: concerned joker, wise guy, handsome and the girl. Connoisseurs of horror can even speculate in what order they should die.
But all this is only a form and a very small element of the narrative. If you take the film as a slasher, the timing of the two and a half hours and a very slow development of the action will tire only. After the story about something else. It is much better to pay attention to what happens with the main character. And then the picture is transformed into a real drama.
Ari Aster very good reason to delay the entry, causing pain and loss of feeling simultaneously insincere relations with Christian Dani. All these uncomfortable conversations, long pauses and constant excuses for sure many will seem familiar.
And only once in the commune, she meets sincere people. Those who do not divide on his and other people's, do not steal, and brings together children. But more importantly: these people are very different in the loss of loved ones.
Changes in the Dani are the main but not the only driving force of the plot. No less interesting to watch and the rest of the characters, each of which has its own path and its own drawbacks.
In this sense, "Solstice" can be compared with the "Antichrist" Lars von Trier - there is also isolation from modern society awakens ancient instincts and they are closer and clearer than traditional orders.
Cheating second: beauty instead of darkness
Everyone knows that time is standard horror - night. The most terrible creatures come out of the dark and often something that can not be seen, scared more than perfectly-designed monsters.
Even in "reincarnation"Ari Aster though safely treated with the standard for the genre moves, but still followed these principles. But in "Solstice", he only teases the viewer in the beginning - some scary scenes takes place in the semi-darkness.
And then the director turns on the light.
"Solstice" is very beautiful shot. Already since the beginning of the trip Astaire and his constant operator Paul Pogorzelski, with whom the director was creating more of his early short films, capture a stunning picture viewer.
Installation is made very rapidly and gracefully, allowing the heroes to instantly move from one location to another. Thus more prolonged scenes can be displayed one frame without gluing. A camera sometimes makes great spans, rotations or flips.
Brighter horror film can hardly be found in the modern filmography. After all, here the action is not just happening in the light of the day - the sun does not set at all almost.
And to this is added yet and white clothes of inhabitants of Kharga, their light skin and kind smile. Much of the time is devoted to the mysterious rites, often very beautiful: dances, food joint reception and other nice things. "Dark" here look just guests of their highlights and clothing, appearance, and behavior.
Yet the "Solstice" is frightening. And Aster knowingly or willfully avoids Screamer and other cheap ways to catch up with horror. In the most terrible moments of the sound is not twisting at the maximum, as does James Wan in "sworn". On the contrary: everything happens in silence, almost casually. And if you suggest any unpleasant physiological details, it is not an end in itself, but only the method of immersion.
For the director is more important to make the viewer not to jump in the chair and feel uncomfortable, to feel as if he was in this community. And because some items can really be annoying. For example, every night somewhere behind the scenes crying child, Background sound atonal violin, and some characters behave alarmingly unnatural.
And the constant expectation of something terrible is more important, than the terrible scene. It's a film about the way, and not about the result.
Cheating third: the people instead of monsters
"The age-old darkness awakened" - promise to the Russian posters. The trailer flashed mysterious person, people take off and rituals clearly reminiscent of some kind of magic.
But the "Solstice" will allow more acquainted with the way of life of ancient communities, albeit on a fictional example, than with mysticism. Of course, you can remember the film "Wicker Man," where the action was also due to the occultists and their orders.
But Ari Aster much more time to the story of the simple customs. And it perfectly explains why and how they exist or have so far and how to behave by those for whom such a life - the only norm. And the "Solstice" is really a good insight into the history if you do not, then psychology and the opportunity to observe how people bring themselves to ecstasy or just dancing all together experiencing the emotion of one person.
So it worked in these communities, and the movie only displays almost real past, which can be worse than any fantasy by Stephen King.
Therefore, great attention is paid to choreography and general scenes at some point binding "Solstice" to the recent "Suspiria». Therefore, the inhabitants of the community every action receives a logical explanation. Here are just doing this even worse.
But the most important thing that must be understood before viewing the "Solstice" - all described above is not a spoiler to the plot or its interpretation. This film is generally not permitted to tell: there are very few events, and its perception is primarily due not to the effect, and with feelings. And they will be at everyone.
To achieve the emotion and immersive, the picture lasts two and a half hours. For the same reason the director in the form of one of the genre puts the story from another. All for the sake of every viewer himself survived this trip and decided for themselves what is meant by what the world is closer to him and who still was the protagonist of the story. If this all is.
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