|Courtesy MLusk of You Know Where|
She Were Love: An Ok Oh Movie Review of I Am Love
I'll admit it. I read the sports section first. Actually, I'll admit this too, we just cancelled our weekend delivery. Trying to save money, see. The weekday delivery is still viable as we have this vague notion that the sight of the New York Times brings wifey's clients some sense of comfort in the morning. We are probably wildly inaccurate in this presumption, but we'll stick with it because we also think it makes our son smarter to see the New York Times laying around every weekday morning. Even if I read the sports section first. Back to that. I find it often a bad idea to read anything other than the sports section (and, truth be told) the front page section. Maybe Tuesday's Science Times cuts it. And sometimes that section with the pictures of neat houses built by people with enough money to build neat houses. Or know-how. Still, that gets dicey as I have neither and I hate feeling like a failure in the morning. One section I stay completely away from (except for the dance reviews) (and those because people who write about dance are plain kooky) is the Arts section. In particular, I try to never, ever read a review of any movie I'd ever likely want to see in a movie theater. I don't find it helpful to find out that a certain story is about a caged bird, moving furtively like a terrier through a life she passingly accepts thanks to a limp-wristed wave of a particularly happenstantial bygone youthful pragmatism. And so there I am, in the movie theater watching a movie I know very little about save the rave nods of a few friends and a snippet of a radio conversation between Tilda Swinton and some radio voice. I Am Love, then, struck me as a thunderbolt. A wet, slippery thunderbolt of a movie that straddles that art-house-great-film-fine-line between poetry and dance. And there we have it, this review has become a dance review, one in which I play the kook. Fine by me. In fact, I could write more about this film. I could write about the subtle shifts in obvious content, the succulent and tedious lighting rendered neither at every moment, how every frame looks like a cross between a Polaroid and just a hint of a color correction mistake but runs together like Rothko painting written by an Italian Edward Hopper, or how the John Adams music invites nothing other than total interest in every scene it exposes. There are few films that can lay it on thick, give you every inch and still play mysterious. Few films that can be so meticulous and thought-through and still ooze emotion. Few films that can write so much sentimentality into a place while sifting through the gauzy muck to clarity. And few films that are both poetry and dance.