''A collection of films that paint with light, colors, and camera movement. No order. Some of these films may…
Samsara is a word that describes the ever turning wheel of life. It is a concept both intimate and vast - the perfect subject for filmmakers Ron Fricke and Mark Magidson, whose previous collaborations include Chronos and Baraka, and who, in the last 20 years, have travelled to over 58 countries together in the pursuit of unique imagery. Samsara takes the form of a nonverbal, guided meditation that will transform viewers in countries around the world as they are swept along a journey of the soul. Through powerful images pristinely photographed in 70mm and a dynamic music score, the film illuminates the links between humanity and the rest of the nature, showing how our life cycle mirrors the rhythm of the planet.
Cool feature-length adaptation of Madonna's "Ray of Light" video [THIS HAS BEEN A JOKE ABOUT TIME-LAPSE PHOTOGRAPHY. THANKS FOR READING.]
While just as visually and technically awe-inspiring as Baraka, Samsara feels much more anthropocentric, which diminishes that feeling of universality contained in its predecessor. Still, for someone who does not usually search out documentaries, Fricke's two masterworks, coupled with the recently watched Bestiaire (thanks for putting it on the radar, Marcissus), have got me craving more non-narrative and lyrical films. I'm looking at you, Qatsi trilogy.
While undeniably beautiful, this film left a bad taste in my mouth. Samsara is a series of images, cut together in fairly rapid succession, taking the viewer on a “global” tour of the “cultures of the world”. Some images are meant to be purely aesthetically beautiful (which they are), some images are meant to be confrontational. But as these are just images, without context, and in the absence of any explicit narrative, the meaning comes from montage, and I did not care for that meaning.
Yes, there is confrontation, but there is also exploitation and exoticization. Unlike (from what I hear) Baraka, Samsara concerns itself mainly with humans. The near absence of white people, except for a few shots from…
Ron Fricke’s first film in twenty years, Samsara, is another bold and dazzling explosion of images from around the world chronicling the progression of life and interconnectedness of the human race. Those familiar with Fricke’s stunning Baraka will know what to expect from his latest non-narrative globetrotting odyssey that took five years to make and explores human life on five continents.
Shot on 70mm film you’ll be hard pressed to find a more visually resplendent cinematic treat for the eyes. It is a constantly shifting kaleidoscope of unforgettable images that threaten to overwhelm the audience in their beauty. The colours are eye-poppingly vibrant, the textures tactile and it contains some truly breathtaking time lapse photography. As a work of visual…
Whoa! What a truly inspirational movie! I was totally blown away!
My boyfriend described it as a "big fuck off PowerPoint" but even he was blown away by it.
I have so many question, I wish there were subtitles for each image so I knew where it was or what was happening. On the other hand, that could ruin the film's beauty.
It's all just sand
My 100th review! This is a movie that I was nervous to see, mainly because Baraka was a piece of art that had spoken to me in such a powerful way I didn't want to experience "Baraka light" or a Baraka knockoff. It is sometimes unfair to compare a directors works against each other (especially if you have an emotional connection to something) instead of just taking the work on its own. Listening to a new album or seeing a new movie should valued on its own at first, then maybe compared against other works later.
The message I get from this movie is that life is short, the existence of the world is long, and…
Samsara is a beautiful piece of cinema everyone should experience during their lifetime. It speaks a thousand tongues.
How Many Movies Like This Are There?
We start, of course, with the classic Koyaanisqatsi, the 1982 creation of Godfey Reggio scored to the music of Philip Glass. From there, Powaqqatsi. From there, my least favourite of the trilogy, Naqoyqatsi. Ron Fricke, who is credited as a writer on Koyaanisqatsi, then did Baraka, which I quite liked, and this. Which is beautiful and strained and both the good and bad of humans, but I've seen it. Five times now. It would not surprise me to discover that there are plenty of other lesser-known films of the same nature. In some ways, it's the easiest kind of film to make, especially if you have access to a composer. You film interesting…
I can confirm that this is the best film ever made to be watched under the influence of magic mushrooms. Incredible experience. Samsara is cinema at it's finest.
Taken for what it is, Samsara is a great example of its genre. Watch it for the visuals and expect little else.
Another remarkable film from Ron Fricke about the interaction of man with nature, the stunning beauty of our planet, and our constant erosion of that beauty. I felt that as much as I was watching the film, the participants were watching me!
Mr.Frickle, gettin' a little old there, don't cha think?!!
The second scene of Samsara, the one with the Tollund Man (if I'm right), there's a song playing. An "old" swedish lullaby that goes by the name "Byssan lull" (in some cases "Vyssan lull"). I'm pretty sure that almost every Swedish parent have hummed it to put their baby to sleep, and the lyrics in the first verse goes like this (translated by me, without the concern of it suiting the melody)
Byssan Lull, boil the kittle full
There're three men walkng on the road.
One he has a limb
the second he is blind,
and the third one has torn clothes.
This song pretty much sets the tone and subject for the whole movie, and if I would to…
- The Double Life of Veronique
- Days of Heaven
- Io Island
- For All Mankind
- 102 Minutes That Changed America
- Into Eternity
Every documentary I have seen (or at least can recall seeing) ranked. This list will constantly be updated and rearranged
- The Turin Horse
- Once Upon a Time in Anatolia
- Holy Motors
- The Master
Just what it says on the tin: a rough ranking of 2012 commercial film releases in the US (market for…