Friday, March 28, 2014

Exhibition [2013]

MPAA (UR would be R)  IndieWire (A-)  TheTelegraph (3 1/2 Stars)  TheGuardian (3 1/2 Stars)   Fr. Dennis (4 Stars)

IMDb listing

Cine-Vue (P. Gamble) review
The Telegraph (R. Collin) review 
The Guardian (R. Gibley) review

Exhibition [2013] (written and directed by Joanna Hogg) is a minimalist, visually elegant, experimental film from the United Kingdom that should interest visual artists, photographers and cinematographers alike, as well as those who enjoy "getting beyond the visuals, beyond the surface" and try to figure-out the riddle of "what's going on" (what's being told) here.  The film played recently at the 17th Annual European Union Film Festival held at the Gene Siskel Film Center in Chicago.  And it does make for an amusing and insightful tale ...

The film is about a childless (by all appearances by choice though, both in life as in the film, the outsider could never know), early middle-aged couple, my guess in their 40s, H (played by Liam Gillick) and D (played by Viv Albertine), he an architect, she a fashion designer.  Both work (in their-made "offices") on separate floors... of their stylish modernist home (lots and lots of glass, the staircase between the floors, really, really elegant/cool, is arguably a third character in the tale).

During the day, H and D communicate with each other mostly by house-line/intercom.  And since both find themselves mostly "in their own little worlds" of their creative professions.  Inevitably when one calls it's "a bad time" for the other.  Since their home, modern as it is, looks/functions like an office building, it's visually amusing presentation of the "downside" of "working at home" or "bringing your work home with you."

But home it is, and particularly fashion designer D, who seems to enjoy the range/play of light available to her by this house full of glass with roll-up-able, roll-down-able curtains and blinds of every kind, finds herself rather anxious at the prospect that the two have "decided" to sell the house and move on.

Or did they "decide" at all?  I could imagine that husband H, an architect after all, had become bored with the house and would like (to build?) something new.  Besides, it's clear that he's frustrated that he rarely sees his wife in the current arrangement.  On the other hand it's clear that D "loves her space."

So this is honestly a fascinating film about "modern life" ... and about a modern couple that arguably "has it all" ... and yet ... doesn't.  Wow ;-)

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