All the films from all the editions, including those subsequently removed, presently totalling 1167. An easy way of seeing how…
Last Year at Marienbad
Takes place in a chateau, an ambiguous story of a man and a woman who may or may not have met last year at Marienbad.
Self-indulgent cinema at its most beautiful. I wanted to love this because duh, but I hated it because also duh. It goes nowhere, it fails to create any kind of atmosphere, and the "nightmare" it portrayed was a pretty tame nightmare. I once had a nightmare where my penis turned into a snake and ate my butt. Make a movie about that.
Deconstructing cinema much in the way Bresson wanted to do but in more grand fashion. It is akin to the Dadaist art movement of anti-art, breaking the rules and destroying the notion of what we perceive as true art. Perhaps not fully to that extent but Resnais clearly experiments with the medium of cinema in a way majorly unaccepted and ironically it becomes the focal point of where the film's greatness lies.
Last Year at Marienbad begins with repetitive and poetic narration ominously filling the air of the long empty corridors and parlors it softly speaks of. In the first few opening scenes alone it is apparent Resnais is ready to deliver something entirely unique to the world of cinema.…
Set within the confines of a grand château, Last Year at Marienbad is a vessel of half-memories and never-ending corridors. It's a black and white nightmare refusing to flow smoothly as all of its elements face off in a tremendous aesthetic battle. Organ music pummels into dialogue, distracting from dense and repetitive conversations, and making it impossible to fully comprehend a grounded reality. The film has its own space, its own temporality, and everything is completely folded into the inescapable setting.
Despite being frequently labelled as ambiguous and surrealist, Last Year at Marienbad can be read in quite basic terms when stripped down. It's always seemed to me that the film attempts to depict the aftermath of a tragic affair…
Last Year at Marienbad is one of the most surprising films I have ever seen. I had read many articles on how the film is rather aware of itself, or was considered pretentious. I, however, find that the film was remarkably advanced for its time - this is '61, people. The only other Alain Resnais film I have seen to date is Mon oncle d'Amerique, which I did not enjoy immensely (aside: after this, I plan a rewatch very soon). Yet with this film, Resnais has created something that has not aged noticeably, along with some of the most beautiful and influential camerawork in the history of cinema. Many parodies were apparently spawned from the style of this film, lending…
Warning: There might be spoilers ahead.
My first venture into Alain Resnais' filmography couldn’t possibly have left a better impression. As great as straight forward structures can be, it's films like Last Year at Marienbad that give cinema such a unique identity and the ability to tell a story in a way that no other medium can. I like ambiguous films, but it’s the experimental nature on top that really makes this a special piece of work. I don’t really know how to review a movie that often completely ignores typical movie conventions, instead I’m going to talk about observations I made regarding the content, style and what impression they left me with.
Last Year at Marienbad is a film…
I know its ultra plebeian of me to not give this five stars but watching pretty looking aristocrats valiantly battle their apathy and ennui while a droning organ ceaselessly drills into your skull is really not my favourite way of spending a Sunday evening. From what i had read, I was led to at least expect a thought-provoking experience full of ambiguity and rich thematic content but as it turns out there were not too many layers for me to explore and it was actually pretty straight forward. But most importantly, it never really engrossed me and I was completely cold right through.
However. The fact that it is so ridiculously beautiful does make up for quite a bit more…
At about twelve minutes in we see the first shot of the character who might as well be called the protagonist and he is watching two people having an evidently personal discussion (the viewer can see the couple in the mirror that is opposite his head) very much along the lines of the discussions he has had/will be having with another central character. Since this film is in many ways a presentation of the machinations of memory we can perhaps infer that witnessing this conversation has had him conflate it with his own recollections or completely misrepresent them. It's equally likely that one of the two is the case as it is that they're not but the point of it…
If you're lucky, every once in a while you get to watch a film that is unlike anything you've ever seen - maybe it has a specific aesthetic, a peculiar narrative construction, a beautiful idea, or it understands itself as a film in a unique way. Last Year at Marienbad has all of these; it's an enigma that I will come back to again and again, to find a new interpretation, an old hotel, and that wonderfully film-specific feeling of discomfort, confusion, and being completely enraptured.
Expressionism taken to its formalist extreme.
Yes, the grandiose mansion and meticulously crafted sets were great. Yes, the eerie organ score and cinematic play with mirrors was effective in creating tension. Yes, I can see how this film influenced the history of cinema and without it, films such as Memento and Eyes Wide Shut would perhaps not have been created.
But what did I just watch? I didn’t grasp the story, and don’t have an inkling how I could convey the plot to someone else. Two dimensions? Amnesia? The mansion is haunted?
The motif of freezing was a bit cryptic; I like how it played out not only physically with the lake but also in the actors’ lack of movement in most scenes. Ultimately I have not a clue what happened last year at Marienbad.
This is not a film, it's a dream that will keep you under its spell long after you watch it. I haven't seen a film this immersive in a long time. Great film
I ordered it from Netflix dvd. My Brother decided not to watch and instead he watched Jersey Girl By Kevin. Maybe he should go to the doctor, something's wrong with him
Absolutelly brilliant and beautiful, but for me it just lingered on the same idea for the entirety of its duration, which is pretty much the same problem I have with The Duke of Burgundy. Similar lines of dialogue are repeated over and over again and while the reaction to them gradually shifts, it isn't all that engaging. However, the idea here is much more elaborate and layered that in Duke, so... extra points for that, I guess. The "old me" (read my Synecdoche, New York review if you don't know what I'm talking about) would definitelly have given it 5-stars.
This movie is what many people think of when they hear the term "art film." It's beautiful, and makes only enough sense to get the viewer thinking about it for days.
It's best to just let it pass in front of your eyeballs and try not to think about it to much. Just watch.
The closest thing I can think of is perfume ads from the 90s, where people talk to each other without looking at each other, and everything is in black and white.
But it works. Somehow.
A link to a review can be found through this list - letterboxd.com/coheed/list/cinema-of-the-abstract/
Recently, I've become aware that certain films are able to transcend the medium by being completely self-assured in their atmospheres…