All the films from all the editions, including those subsequently removed, presently totalling 1167. An easy way of seeing how…
In a small, dilapidated village in 1990s Hungary, life has come to a virtual stand-still. The Autumn rains have started. A few of the villagers expect to receive a large cash payment that evening, and then plan to leave. Some want to abscond earlier with more than their fair share of the money. However they hear that the smooth-talking Irimias, whom they thought had died, is returning. They are apprehensive that he will take all their money in one of his grandiose schemes to keep the community going.
A REVIEW FOR MY #1 FAVORITE FEATURE FILM OF MY ENTIRE EXISTENCE, AND MAYBE FOREVER WITH A 99.5% PROBABILITY.
Don't read it as a review, but as a magazine article. This is the longest thing I have ever written about one single film, but it is also the only review that made me cry out of sentiment while constructing it.
Before starting to construct a modest, fully developed essay about Béla Tarr's Sátántangó, let's make a nostalgic resume about some of the most wonderful experiences cinema has offered throughout its history. German Expressionism represented the pinnacle of Berlin's technical vision and resulted in the most visually captivating and thought-provoking classic masterpiece up to a hair-rising degree. After the Second World…
This review reportedly contains spoilers. I can handle the truth.
My first experience with Bela Tarr was the film The Turin Horse! The visuals were haunting! The story a monotonous journey day in and day out into a black void of complete and utter hopelessness! It was surprising easy to allow myself to be immersed in this bottomless pit of despair and bleakness! Due in part because I could fully relate to the story! It was about simple people living a simple life enduring lifes generous helpings of pain!
Now Satantango was a whole different kettle of fish! While I could easily go knee deep in this murky quagmire of a film there was always something to jerk me from its vice like grip back into reality! I kept being…
An absolute masterpiece from Bèla Tarr, who really does prove he's one of the greatest directors of all time. Seven long hours pass beautifully, each of the 157 shots in the film precisely framed and captured to perfection. If I were to highlight only one sequence in this absolute fucking classic of all cinema, it would be the final 30 minutes, which are among the creepiest I've ever seen in a movie and leave a lasting impression that provokes nightmares and chills. Those thirty minutes alone make it one of the best films I have ever seen.
When people ask me why I love cinema so much, I spend a lot of time thinking about an answer. Usually I have nothing.
Now I can say one word: Satantango.
Satantango is why I love cinema.
Once caught in the paradigm of watching, rating, reviewing, talking about a film with friends, it becomes a rare occurence that within a films run-time you will forget about these supposed obligations, and become totally swept up in what's happening on screen. It's an even rarer feat for a seven hour long film like Satantango to manage this; from the moment it takes hold of you, it has you. It's one of the few experiences in cinema - and I've felt it…
I always used to think people who say they genuinely 'like' Satantango are just lying to catch a little shine, or because otherwise what was the point of sitting through those 450 slow minutes? Its difficult to just simply dislike or disregard a movie you have invested so much of your time in but as it turns out, Bela Tarr's mammoth Satantango really is pretty great. So great actually that it probably deserves an even higher rating than this but I did find it difficult to really connect with its story and find something to latch onto in the way some others have. I also feel it was a bit overextended in parts and in those moments I started to…
'What can you make in a small village?'
'You can make a masterpiece'
A 7 hour and 30 minutes of pure experience, which can make you feel that Cinema is life and it's worth living for.
Bela Tarr has made a art which is beyond imagination, it is like entering into his world and experiencing it frame by frame. Werckmeister Harmonies which I had a first hand experiencing to a world I have never entered before, and now this. I literally don't have words to describe it.
The camera, the feeling, the village, the people, the life and the experience within it. Bela Tarr has given us a gift. One of the story in this movie is of A Girl…
When you spent 7 hours watching a single movie, you can't say that it's not worth it 'cause that will make you a loser.
Well that was cheery. I might have real thoughts once I stop feeling oppressed by the weight of human existence.
While, I'm not prepared to declare Bela Tarr's seven hour behemoth of a depressatron a masterpiece, I think it's a little hard to deny the skill on display here. It takes a certain special person to drop such a long series of ten minute shots on the world, full of little to no action, and still make every motion feel significant. When the doctor collapses, it's the height of drama, in the girl's scenes, we see the apocalypse, and when we return once again to the tango, the desperation becomes internalized. I think after seven hours seeping in…
A visually stunning film shot in black and white. The movements of the camera is almost an own character and it knows exactly when it should be doing a movement and when to be stationary. I especially like when the camera frames the subject in the shot like a painting or a still picture and then we get a movement from the subject which causes a reaction from the camera. It feels like the camera follows the subject in a search to find a frame in which the camera can just lock into and stay there. It uses this technique instead of cutting to a new shot which gives the movie a more meditative feeling.
I adore the film until…
seven and a half hours of bleak atmospheric tone and stunning visuals! worth every minute..at times the dark humor made me chuckle, and at other times the bleak living conditions these people lived in made me sad....To the best of my knowledge, this is my first Hungarian Film too....
Throughout my experience with cinema as an art form I have come across a handful a films that affect me in a variety of ways. A film like 2001: A Space Odyssey was able to show me the transcendent ideas films have to offer. Paris, Texas was able to show me the beauty in human connection and a truth behind what a relationship is. Dancer in the Dark is a film that gave me an insight into the horrors of intimate death. Come and See, Last Year at Marianbad, It's Such a Beautiful Day, Paths of Glory and Magnolia are all films that has taught me the language of cinema and the power behind the dialogue between an artist and…
Bela Tarr's epic 7 1/2 hour Satantango is a very long film that take a novelistic approach to the material. Moving slowly, but gradually bringing all the threads together it's a stunning achievement in terms of constructing a large narrative that is incredibly cinematic, sad, and beautiful. Made up mainly of Tarr's characteristic long takes, it builds the story with many characters, often seeing some of the same events from different points of view. Moving from small, intimate moments, to large and beautiful frames, it features some of the most beautiful shots in cinema. After a while it becomes almost hypnotic, but as it goes, it seems to erase time once you settle in to the rhythm. Probably not for everyone, but the second time I watched it was even more enjoyable.
This film cannot possibly be rated
Today I was home sick. What better way to pass the brain-fogged antihistaminic time than to watch discs 2 and 3, and then finish off the novel, beautifully translated by George Szirtes. Interesting to see what Tarr and Krasznahorkai felt were not appropriate for the screen, such as a more literal resurrection vision. And relatively short passages in the book are really drawn out in the film for auditory and visual (and ultimately mental) effect, such as the interminable drunken dance scene in the bar.
Mesmerising black-and-white cinematography, hypnotic rhythm made of ultra-long shots moving in slow zooms and pans, all enveloped by an ominous music and constant rain. “Satantango” is an eerily artefact, that moves our inner feelings, even when you don't fully comprehending what’s going on in the screen.
Throughout seven hours we’re invited to enter a place in a specific time (1980’s) and geography (Hungary), but that seems more like a parallel and impossible world dimension.
If you accept to dance the tango, you’ll not be able to give up.
For five years, film critic Scott Tobias compiled "The New Cult Canon" in a regular column for The A.V. Club…