Sunday, July 23, 2006

From hopelessness to hopefullness in two hours...

I would be lying if I said Last Life in the Universe did not move me. It was a film to whose main character I related to a little. A suicidal, bookish, cleanliness-freak librarian named Kenji and a lonely, pot-smoking woman living in a filthy home get together and this is the story of how they develop affection for eachother.

Kenji is a guy who is neat and clean. His house looks like a library and he works in one too. He is alone with no friends and family, and he spends too much time thinking about death. But as the film shows death comes in an instant but the waiting period is an eternity for an individual.

Kenji meets Noi when he is sitting on the railing on a bridge contemplating his death and when Noi's sister gets run over. Then Kenji gets into trouble because his overbearing "friend" gets killed in his apartment and he kills the killer. He decides to run and ends up going to Noi's house and staying there for a while.

Kenji is a shy guy who seems to have never had a girlfriend and certainly does not know how to make one either. But as time progresses and his stay in Noi's house gets prolonged, they get closer to eachother and you see a genuine relationship developing between them. The film shows, almost in real time, just how much time it takes to become intimate with another person.

There is so little which is spoken aloud in the film and so much conveyed with an mosiac of imagery. You know the background of Noi without her telling anything. And the final scene where Kenji does get caught, you see that this is not a bad ending because his fantasies center on his getting back together with Noi in the future. There is just one other film which rivals this one in terms of amount of things conveyed with little speech and that is Bergman's 'The Silence'.

The film has a poetic quality to it. The scene where Kenji transforms Noi's home is just pure magic. That is film making at its best.

I think I will watch this again next week.

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1 comment:

pseudonym said...

talk of little speech, do see 3-iron. words per minute in last life... would at least be 10 times more than 3-iron.

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