Author Topic: Under the Skin  (Read 6037 times)

Junior

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Re: Under the Skin
« Reply #60 on: April 04, 2015, 12:48:47 PM »
There is a concrete difference between the first and serving half of the film, she turns from the hunter to the hunted. Why that happens is up for interpretation, except that it seems to be because of her not killing that guy. Whatever else you want to put on top of the events is up to you (I see her becoming more human in the second half and developing feelings, basically), but there are concrete things that everybody can agree on, I think.
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verbALs

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Re: Under the Skin
« Reply #61 on: April 04, 2015, 01:57:56 PM »
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That's why I'm saying it's not a film that reflects human nature... it reflects your nature.

Yeah and I'm human.

Nobody's asking you to take anything away but again you go too far saying nobody can take anything away from the film.

Forget the sense of it or the takeaway's. Just like Upstream Color there are multiple scenes that are tremendously dramatic, that express human drama, which is emphasised by the alienation that both films view events from. A baby crying on a beach for whatever reason is distressing. Whatever the framework for those events may be it makes for terrific cinema. Or it doesn't which is the choice you make. Flatly denying any of that on the basis that there is no takeaway as if that's suddenly a thing is going too far.

Please feel free to object to the free form way I wrote about it because the film was a jump off point for my thoughts. I think you took it as me reading into the movie instead. If you can't accept I wasn't that's fair enough.
« Last Edit: April 04, 2015, 02:04:52 PM by verbALs »
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smirnoff

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Re: Under the Skin
« Reply #62 on: April 04, 2015, 02:38:57 PM »
There is a concrete difference between the first and second half of the film, she turns from the hunter to the hunted.

It seemed that way to me too, and I ran with that during the film (for lack of any better explanation). I think only one part of that is concrete though. "she turns"

Suddenly there are a half-dozen motorcycle guys going off in different directions, and a sense like they are following her. I wouldn't say hunting, because that implies an certain intention. But we don't know what their intentions actually are because nobody says anything. Anyways, we do see the terrain changing each time the motorcycle guy is shown and it appears that he eventually arrives in the same region she is in because the weather and terrain match up, and we haven't seen him take a boat anywhere, so where else could it be? But why can't he find her? He knew where and when to find the deformed guy, with such precision he even knew to open the car trunk before before he saw his target. That's how confident he was that the guy was right around the corner. And yet between him and his helpers they can't get closer to SJ than being in the general region? How do they even get that close? They know where she is, but only kind of? Are they actually trying to find her or are they just trying to remain close at hand to assist her as they had been before? We don't know because nobody says anything.

It's true that SJ stops her van-pickup routine. She's driving, she stops, it's foggy, she gets out, and the van is never seen again. Were the motorcyclists tracking her through the van, and that's why they were only able to have a regional sense of where she was? But then how did the one motorcyclist track the deformed man? Different method. Either way SJ leaves the van and walks to a town and tries to eat cake, which is definitely outside of anything we have seen her do before. And her demeanor has change... she no longer has that cold sense of purpose in her eyes. Instead she looks lost or vacant or in a daze. I agree. There has been a change in her. An observable, demonstrable change.

We don't know what it means, we don't know precisely why, we don't know if it's permanent, we don't know if she will change even more, we don't know if she remembers anything she did, we don't know how far ahead she's thinking, we don't know if she feels the presence of those motorcycle guys...

Something's changed though. That's one, of a thousand things, that I will concede is able to be established. One orphaned fact.

I just don't know what's gained by not providing answers to these questions. This idea goes around that good films are the one's that generate conversations after they're over. I hear directors say "if people come away and they're talking about the film on the way home then I've done my job". I don't get that at all. Maybe they're talking about how crap it was. There's value in confusing an audience now? If all you're trying to do is get people to talk, that's a low bar in my opinion.

smirnoff

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Re: Under the Skin
« Reply #63 on: April 04, 2015, 03:51:58 PM »
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That's why I'm saying it's not a film that reflects human nature... it reflects your nature.

Yeah and I'm human.

I wish there was a documentary on you then! :))



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Nobody's asking you to take anything away but again you go too far saying nobody can take anything away from the film.

Forget the sense of it or the takeaway's. Just like Upstream Color there are multiple scenes that are tremendously dramatic, that express human drama, which is emphasised by the alienation that both films view events from. A baby crying on a beach for whatever reason is distressing. Whatever the framework for those events may be it makes for terrific cinema. Or it doesn't which is the choice you make. Flatly denying any of that on the basis that there is no takeaway as if that's suddenly a thing is going too far.

That's true. I mean I think it's a thing, but it's certainly not the only thing, you're right.

I was distressed by that baby. That entire sequence was powerful and distressing to watch. Later, when SJ is back in the van, she is listening to the news report on the radio and the story recounts the details: "Man's body washed up at a local golf course... baby and wife missing, but believed to have been with him". You hear reports of stories like that on the radio and they make you feel very little, almost as little as she seemed to feel doing it. But seeing it play out, even though we only have the smallest glimpse of who the people are (a family with a baby and dog out for a day at the beach, and a wandering loner from another country) we suddenly feel the tragedy of it much more. They have a story, it's a very short one, but it's enough to feel great emotions over it ending. News reports of strangers dying can be shocking, but they are rarely emotional in that way, because we never saw them live. We got to see these people live and then die, and it was distressing.

I agree, there are a lot of tremendously dramatic scenes. I think for me some of the most dramatic bits where the establishing shots, usually of some bleak landscape (sometimes with a distant motorcycle speeding across it). OAD mentioned a resemblance to the Pacific Northwest, and I drawn to it for the same reasons. I said wow a lot of times just because of the weather and terrain they captured.

The film winning the filmspot for Best Score put me over the edge. I was going to see it, and then it won, and then I made it a priority. And the score was excellent. A major contributor to the experience. So engaged, so aligned, so active! There are flourishes, like when the deformed man is about to get snatched by the motorcyclist, or when the guy deflates in the goo, that are really simple and great. It's almost hard to tell in these moments if the score is the score or an actual sound effect taking place in the film. It really set the mood though (and made me jump).

I think the only time watching the film I got a little restless was when SJ was walking around castles with the dude she meets. Other than that I had no problem sticking with it. There was enough crumbs to lead me to the end. No great payoff, but I made it. A fair experience, all things considered. Well above Upstream.

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Please feel free to object to the free form way I wrote about it because the film was a jump off point for my thoughts. I think you took it as me reading into the movie instead. If you can't accept I wasn't that's fair enough.

It's not always easy to disassociate the passion of the writing from the passion of the experience is all.

Likewise, it probably sounded like I hated the film. I didn't. I just feel strongly on that one point.