In my opinion, of course!
And only including films that I've seen.
Hardly in order after the top fifty.
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…
What?! And also wow. There was no point during this film where I didn't feel completely naive.
As non-narrative films go, this one is really stunning for its gorgeous photography and entrancing juxtaposition of images. It is not a typical story with plot or character. It is a more of an experience, a guided meditation. Let’s start with the title. Samsara is a Sanskrit word which literally translates as "a wandering through.” In Eastern religion/philosophy, it formally refers to a passage through many states of existence that are involved in an endless cycle of death and rebirth, creation and destruction. Samsara depicts the experience of our seemingly chaotic world, the splendor and the suffering, and the agitated state of mind through which we perceive it.
The film begins and ends with Tibetan monks working on a mandala;…
A rational interpretation might deem this flick to be a zen if somewhat boring few hours of beautifully shot footage. I don't know though, I reckon if there were ever a movie shot through God's eyes this might be it. I felt like this film captured both the arbitrary meaninglessness of life's rhythms and the transcendence of it's symponious beauty. Puke maybe but hey, my affinity to existence was reestablished and that's got to be worth something even if I am pulling shit from my overly sensitised ass. I doubt I'd feel the same way if I watched this again but in my memory I will always have been Budhha for five minutes~~
One the most impacting and visually stunning, non narrative documentary I have ever seen.
Features the most beautiful visuals I have ever seen.
"Samsara" ia a Fantasia of spirituality, environmentalism, and culture.
This non-narrative and wordless masterpiece may seem like just a visual feast at first glance, but beneath the surface is an interesting meditation on consumerism and industrialism. Though most visuals are exuberant, some are, at the same, time deeply haunting. Every sequence accompanied by a fantastic soundtrack that's doesn't force the film's points in your face.
This film is masterful.
I don't think I've ever seen anything like this. It's a "real-life" version of Fantasia and it is profound and beautiful. Even with its close to two hour length, I don't think I was once bored. This was simply amazing to watch.
In my opinion, of course!
Some of the greatest camerawork of all-time, in my opinion.
''A collection of films that paint with light, colors, and camera movement. No order. Some of these films may…