domingo, 8 de novembro de 2009

Studies #1 - Maboroshi's Funeral Parade Scene

Truly transcendental. This poetic scene taken from Hirokazu Koreeda's 1995 movie Maboroshi no Hikari turns the living world and even nature into sorrowful shadows of despair. With a genius touch for details, Kore-eda uses images in their poetic nature. Let's see how:

1st cut [00:00-00:09] - The first shot of the broken bus stop. Somehow, this very first shot evokes bleakness as the dark shadow of the main character stands still in her sad somnolence.

2nd cut [00:09-00:44] - Surprisingly a Bus comes, introducing in the scene a dream-like tone, because nobody exits and the "haunted" bus keeps going through the dark road, escaping our vision.

3rd cut [00:44-01:06] - Cut back to the first shot. The main character gets out of the bus stop as she hears an hieratic sound (maybe bells?) as if some sort of enchantment is calling her.

4th cut [01:06-01:14] - The Main character stares at something which we don't know what is. This type of dualist shot (the subject looks at the object separately, in the absence of the second and vice-versa) can be found in Ozu Yasujiro's work, specially in his famous talking scenes.

5th cut [01:14-01:40] - A funeral parade appears. But we are not sure what's the meaning behind this sort of dream-like vision.

6th cut [01:40-2:53] - The March keeps going forward as it starts to snow. The profound mystery keeps haunting the whole scene as the white snow contrasts the dark clothes of people. It is also important to notice that the camera is filming from above as if we were watching from the sky. The omniscient vision, which is to say, the vision of the dead.

7th cut [02:53-05:14] - The Funeral Procession slowly exits the screen as the main character is slightly left behind. Not only did the camera started radically filming far away in this shot, but also in doing so it turned the living things into grey, homogenous landscape. Everything in this shot is sacred: so sacred it drives to ecstatic access. The main trick here is to play with our non-knowledge. The poetic beauty of this distanced shilouette lies precisely in this: our eyes can't capture the complete beauty of it, though, they see something, we could say, the partial blindness of the absolute. It is important to notice that, while the procession exits the shot, the main character is left behind, as if the ilusion of the world of the dead slowly fades away in the midst of the crying clouds, lefting behind the only living person who can't follow them anymore.

8th cut [05:14-05:39] - A car arrives. Time and Space coherence has been abolished in this shot with the help of an elipsis, introducing in the scene a car searching for something as the mourning music keeps playing.

9th cut [05:39-05-53] & 10th cut [05:53-06:05] - We can see through the car, the main character standing in front of the sea. As if she was praying to the immensity of nature, thus trying to communicate again with the dead world.

11th cut [06:05-06:58] & 12th cut [06:58-07:37] - The car parks by the beach and the man gets closer to the sea. This announces a conversation between the two characters. The bleak distance communicates the anguish of a world made by shadows.

13th cut [07:37-10:46] The Man and the Woman speak and exit the screen this time. Death can only be one great mystery for those who live. An ilusion of life, perhaps. This being said and anguish now postponed, the couple can finally return to life, exiting the screen now, lefting behind the sea and the sound of the waves furiously crying the silence of the dead, those who can't speak.

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