pink and purple love⋆.∗̥✩⁺will continue to add
*and thanks so much to letterboxd.com/deedeee/ for continuing to recommend hoards of pink…
An intimate examination of a contemporary artist couple, whose living and working patterns are threatened by the imminent sale of their home.
Three years on from her last release Archipelago director Joanna Hogg returns with a far more distant, difficult film to digest. The themes of family and relationships still continue in her work although in a far less explainable and obvious manner this time round. Make no mistake about it this is a difficult film to penetrate, utilising an art-house style that doesn't lend itself to a traditional narrative.
The house in which husband and wife H and D - we never learn their full names - is used as a device framed around their relationship to reflect the state of their marriage. The structure is a large, very cold unwelcoming place that the middle class artists have lived together in…
Lovely little film examining fragility and sterility, one mind-boggling shot at a time. Hogg simply observes for almost two hours, never interrupting the flow of naturalism and concision within her work - nothing lasts too long but we have enough time to survey each image entirely. One perspective-altering shot right near the beginning is a static shot as a woman draws her own face whilst looking at a two sided mirror, we see the shot from the front as the second side of the mirror reflects abstractions of space and area, motion bouncing every which way. Communication is a foreign object to these characters but intimacy is something they're all too aware of, consistently forced to acknowledge another's presence without…
Joanna Hogg' third feature is as art-house as it gets, being about a literal 'art-house'. Married couple H & D (Viv Albertine and Liam Gillick) a performance artist and architect who have lived in their strange, boxy house for eighteen years.
They have a slightly estranged existence; communicating with each other mainly via intercom as they go about their separate projects. The quietness of their space is constantly interrupted by various muffled thumps and sirens from outside - normal sounds, but strange and intrusive in their hermetic environment; as if their home is haunted by their shared past.
Sadly, the premise is the most interesting thing about Exhibition. It is mind-numbingly slow, and the characters are too distant and cold to…
That cake didn't look very edible
A fascinating and stark scrutiny of an artist couple's marriage and and it's relationship within the walls it has occupied for the past 18 years.
Hogg's film is at times voyeuristic and uncomfortable to watch. Punctuated by the everyday sounds of urban life rather than reliance on dialogue, when the couple do speak the awkward gaps in their conversations seem more important than the words they use. The intimate portrayal of the couple's lacking sex life is also uncomfortable viewing, perhaps all the more as it is portrayed by non professional actors. Ultimately, though, I found this minimalist exploration into the human psyche and our connections to our space a compelling work of art.
Non-actors Viv Albertine (of The Slits) and Turner-nominated Liam Gillick play a successful artist couple living in a fortress-like modernist London flat. The flat becomes the stage for their marital sexual dysfunction as we witness the slowly and almost silently played out aftermath to some undisclosed event. This is the just kind of acting I enjoy the most - natural pace and dialogue. So often when art and artists are portrayed in narrative film it feels like caricatures of art and artists. Not in this film. The discussions of their art practice seemed real and believable. And so does their faltering relationship as they endeavour to connect on an intimate level, trying to find ways to heal and move on from whatever caused the hiccup in their lives.
One of the things that's come to bother me about modern arthouse fare is how damn bourgeois it is, as though it's started to self-consciously court all of the negative stereotypes about its audience that have been so tiresome for decades. Not only is this movie typical of the lazy, listless storytelling and mise en scene that's gone oddly into vogue, it's literally a 109-minute film about a married couple, seemingly upper crust and both able to support themselves as artists, deciding to sell a house, a decision that one of them feels somewhat ambivalent about. I'm not arguing that you can't make a good movie about this subject. I'm arguing that you can't make one with such thin, barely…
Beautifully filmed, and as infuriated as I was at times by the characters, I loved the way the use of space was reflective of their various connections and barriers to each other. I didn't find it pretentious as a film even if the characters themselves were, at times; I also felt that Hogg allowed us sufficient access to the woman's inner life so as to make the film actually more about her in the end and less about the relationship. It's interesting how many of the critics cast the film in terms of precision, austerity, composition, coldness; I thought it was much better than that as a portrait of the tensions between relationship, companionship and inner development.
It's really all about the house. Outside its glass walls: air and movement; the bustle of the city; the peopleless facades of other buildings; construction; greenery, movement; life; noise; potential threats; inchoate thumps, wails, sirens, and voices. Inside: airlessness and stillness; alienation and disaffection; sterility; dissolution; isolation; inchoate thumps, whines, and gurgles from the bowels of the boiler room and the rumblings of huge partitioned walls being slid to and fro as the two denizens of the house move around their Moonbase Alpha-style modern prison (actual house built in 1969). She, an artist, mostly wears a dizzying array of striped shirts, a la convict garb of yore (get it?). He, an artist, mostly wears a muted frown. Themes and tones…
Can't explain why I wound up liking this even as I spent much of its running time feeling the opposite. Suspect it's a tone/mood thing, but can't say for sure. It's certainly not a plot or character thing, since the former is barely there and the latter comprises two bundles of serious artistic quirk rather than anything more recognizable or human. Honestly, I don't find Artists all that interesting in their lives or processes, as a rule. Still, something about the subtlety, here, and the space, and the atmosphere comes out just on the side of positive. Hogg has a vision and executes it faithfully.
That cake didn't look very edible
Another watching paint dry experience from critics' darling Joanna Hogg although a slight improvement on ARCHIPELAGO
Even expecting this to be slow it was a lot harder to watch than I had anticipated. The characters are so distant it's hard to feel much. I did like the ambient sounds, hearing everything going on in the background was much more interesting to me than the artists' lives.
I loved it
I'm probably not the natural audience for this film but nor am I a popcorn-munching art-house hating heathen. And I have never found myself less interested.
Having committed to watching all of this Wittertainment's choices for TV movie of the week I knew from the description that this would an early test of my resolve. And, to be honest it's the only reason I stuck with it.
I've seen it described by Peter Bradshaw as a film "not obsessed with narrative" which is one way of putting it, but it struck me as more of an art installation than a movie - and sadly one that lasts 100 minutes. The story is basically that two artists are moving house -…
Think I feel comfortable with this again? The best. Chronological. Constantly in flux.
films directed by women, in chronological order. always in progress.