Hell itself is presented in such beautiful sights and music that one has to be fascinated by it.
In this short comedy, Luis Vaz de Camoes, the greatest Portuguese renaissance poet, struggles creatively while engaging in a hedonistic, coprophagic, and drug addled lifestyle. See full summary » Well, my late uncle was the fabulous "Sylvia Sidney," long the preeminent drag performer in Boston. It ended up being just the second critically-acclaimed movie I've ever given up on in my life (out of 1000+), and the first that I gave up on because I thought it wasn't good.
(The other was "Russian Ark," an obviously brilliant film which I simply couldn't make any sense of because I knew nothing of Russian or art history.) Rodriguez has a knack for conceiving arresting images (the back of the DVD case has a few such stills), but I found his sense of where to put the camera absolutely alien; I kept on saying to myself "I would never frame this shot that way." To my eyes and brain, it had the look and rhythm of a student film.
There's nothing to like about any of the characters in the first 45 minutes (as far as I got), and I ordinarily have no problem with that; if the actors can communicate the inner pain that drives them to be so difficult, I readily empathize (see my review of Greenberg).
If the actors just seem to be stating their lines, that's another story.
It's a shame, because (as the other reviewer notes) there's a good film here waiting to get out.
I could imagine watching the same narrative and being entranced, if it were well-acted and shot by a director with talent, oops, I mean whose cinematic style resonated with me.
Pedro and Rui kiss after a first-anniversary dinner; Pedro drives home, dying en route in a crash.
Another pair of lovers, Odete and Alberto, split over her desire to have a child. See full summary » Two filmmakers leave to Macao in an adventure of discovery of a city-labyrinth, multicultural and mysterious, where the memories of the childhood - featured memories by the lived reality in...See full summary » Young and handsome Sergio works the night shift as a trash collector in Lisbon, Portugal.He can't force himself to connect with his pretty female co-worker Fatima, who displays an avid ...See full summary » Fernando, a solitary ornithologist, is looking for black storks when he is swept away by the rapids.Rescued by a couple of Chinese pilgrims, he plunges into an eerie and dark forest, trying to get back on his track.A group of young people dance and drink at a house. Socialist victory in the general elections of 1982 seems recent. See full summary » An army of gay/nazi bikers make their engines roar and ride the way to pain/pleasure as sexual and sadistic symbols are intercut into the dazing chaos and rhythmic experiences of this ...