Thursday, February 3, 2011


I've said it before and I'm gonna say it again -- Gaspar Noe's Enter the Void is the finest cinematic achievement from 2010.  I'm not trying to beat a dead horse but this movie is just fucking mesmerizing.  It's total outlaw cinema (thanks for that one, Michael Philips), something that many people will hate/have no time for. But for me, it's a shattering and totally engrossing experience. Nothing even compares. It's so rich, both thematically and aesthetically, that countless viewings will be needed to distill everything that Noe brought to the table. It's definitely a companion piece, of sorts, to Kubrick's 2001. It's a head-trip and a mind-fuck and an example of what I'd call "pure cinema." Noe is interested in telling his stories mostly with images, and considering that film itself is primarily (and most importantly) a visual medium, I feel that what he is doing is nothing short of revolutionary. It's takes someone bold and provocative to challenge (and set) standards, and even though he's made only three feature films, Noe is someone who makes me stand on edge as a lover of cinema. I'm interested in being taken to places that I've never been, and with Enter the Void, I got that over and over again. It's so compulsively watchable that you almost get a contact high from it -- I'm serious.  Check it out and you'll see what I mean.  Much to my pleasant surprise, the recently released Blu Ray is 20 minutes longer than the version that played On Demand last October -- it's labeled the "full director's cut."  And after reading some excellent interviews with Noe (sadly, the Blu Ray doesn't have a commentary or a making-of doc -- how/why did this happen?) it's clear to me that Enter the Void was a total labor of love (much like The Fall was for Tarsem) and something that could only have been made by it's maker.  Oh -- one more thing -- I know that the film was NEVER going to get any serious Oscar consideration, but, it has to be considered an EGREGIOUS error that Enter the Void was passed over for a cinematography nomination.  What Noe and his cameraman Benoit Debie did in this film is nothing short of trendsetting and form-pushing; cinematography lovers have the biggest present in Enter the Void.


Joel said...

The film was never awarded eligibility: it was released on the festival circuit in 2009, and then most American critics didn't actually see it until last August. I'll see it with a friend once all this ice clears up to get a look at it myself, but I think it was a release issue. Plus I hear most Academy members hated it.

Actionman said...

Considering that the average age of your typical Academy member is roughly, say, 97, yeah, I'm sure most of them, if they even saw it, didn't know what to do with something as challenging as Enter the Void. I don't understand why it wouldn't be eligible though. It received a theatrical release in 2010 so why couldn't it be considered?