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Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Just for the Hell of it

The Navidson Record (1993): The peak of physical storytelling, shot with such purpose, and such expertise that it could only be shot by one man, Will Navidson. The film, or maybe documentary, mainly consists of Hi 8 cam shots, but the editing makes the story so engrossing. The depths of the house unexplored, truly amazing. What is even more interesting than the film though is the response to it, the amazing critical response and analysis which comes with the film. One has to only read one of the dozens of essays about it to realize just how much effort people put into it, and to realize just how important it is not only in the history of film, but in the history of human storytelling. A true masterpiece, and if I had to name my favourite film I think this may just have to be it.

It’s the postmodernism in it that truly makes it, the long still shots of darkness, of silence, of nothing. The music too, adds the little touches which draw the viewer in, and make it so much of an experience. The opening shot of one man and some lemonade sets up everything so perfectly, the pacing of the film, some would call it slow, I simply call it tension building. Everything about it is amazing, from the low quality of some of the cameras to add to the realism, to the dialogue which seems so unscripted it could very well be real, despite the fantastical events. Though there is nothing saying it isn’t real, all evidence points to the events being entirely possible, if extremely unlikely, and that is what puts it above the standard film, the level which people are willing to go to prove or disprove it, the sheer effort that is involved in the Navidson Record.

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