This list is by no means definitive or personal, just an import from the MUBI list here.
I'm not entirely…
A mysterious stranger works outside the law and keeps his objectives hidden, trusting no one. While his demeanor is paradoxically focused and dreamlike all at once, he embarks on a journey that not only takes him across Spain, but also through his own consciousness.
"Reality is arbitrary" we hear our nameless, personality-less, voiceless, lead told at one point in the two hours of banal sleep-inducing wank. Utter drowsiness, however, as we see, is not.
What is the The Limits of Control? Well, it's mumbling and wandering in the form of watching paint dry. It causes one to think back to high school biology class to come with that scientific phrase, ah yes, photosynthesis in real time. The fact that it makes one want to think about simple biological terms to describe the dour experience while watching it says enough about it.
Jim Jarmusch, instead of making a film, decided to shoot some walking, stretching, vague encoded message exchanging, and coffee drinking set to some…
Something must be wrong with me.
The Limits of Control was a film people warned me about. They told me that it was a bad movie; an awful film, so pretentious and boring. Ordinarily I wouldn't have checked it out. But it was the only remaining film left unseen by me from one of my favourite directors, Jim Jarmusch. So I had to give it a look.
And quite simply, it blew me away. Disagree you are free to do, but I thought this movie was spectacular. There's not much of a plot, but the enigmatic dialogue and eerie atmosphere of the film makes it constantly gripping, as does phenomenal cinematography and a superb leading performance from Isaach De Bankole.…
“among us, there are those who are not among us.”
some errant thoughts:
- Tilda Swinton is a stone cold fox in this one. not earthy or primal or whatever elemental adjectives are typically used to describe her.
- you will never anything as much as Paz de la Huerta hates clothes.
- wish Jarmusch hadn't been so quick to splice during the last shot when Christopher Doyle drops the camera to his shoulder.
- is THE COUNSELOR the LIMITS OF CONTROL of 2013?
- aesthetics aside (not a small thing), there isn't a single idea here that Jarmusch doesn't manage to capture in a more cogent and compelling fashion with ONLY LOVERS LEFT ALIVE. be that as it may, i think this was a necessary step for him to take, nudging his filmmaking from the spectral to the molecular.
- there's a really great Jarmusch interview by Gavin Smith around this movie, essential reading.
"How the fuck did you get in here?"
"I used my imagination."
This is the type of film I could watch one day and hate and the next day love. I watched it on a good day. Isaach de Bankolé is one badass motherfucker.
"In the near future, worn out things will be made new again by reconfiguring their molecules."
somewhere in the middle of this our protagonist sits down to watch a flamenco rehearsal, and the lyrics of the song he hears repeat a phrase that nearly every single other character has said to him, sort of the movie's mantra about life being "a handful of dirt". it's the one moment in the film where his hilariously stoic expression changes, and he cracks the tiniest of smiles. something repeated over and over suddenly takes on some tiny new connotation because of a slight tweak in context.
Jarmusch has made a career out of these episodic travelogues, those episodes often containing a conversation between…
This film is a tough one for me to get on board with. At around 2 hours long, there is less than 10 pages of script total. But the film isn't minimalist, it's just quiet. It is nearly non-narrative. If I was to describe a plot, I'd say a man takes meetings with different people, exchanges matchbooks with them, and drinks espressoes. That's about it. What makes this film notable is the beautiful landscapes and settings that are filmed. The performances are all good, but they nearly stand apart as separate vinuettes instead of parts of a whole. I thought the music was great, and I can see how this film would lead to the wonderful ONLY LOVERS LEFT ALIVE. There, if I type anymore, I'll have said more than the film.
It's stylish and funny for the first 20 minutes, but then it's just the same thing over and over again. OK so you subverted my expectations, now what? It gets old fast.
Doyle is brilliant, but it's all for naught.
A lot of Borgesian elements...mirrors, the merging of reality and its representation, references to Pascal's Sphere...but it never forms a cohesive whole. The titular Burroughs essay feels shoehorned-in, much like Murray's character.
I had to shut it off after the film just sat there doing nothing for 20 minutes. Nothing happening.... still nothing happening...
I'm sure something happens, but I didn't have patience for it this time.
If I wanted to watch a stranger order coffee for 5 minutes or sit in his apartment or at an art gallery for 10 more minutes, I'd go to those places, stare, and eventually fall asleep from boredom.
Sorry, Tilda and Jim... maybe another time.
This review reportedly contains spoilers. I can handle the truth.
This is my second time seeing this film and I still really like it. I am interested in meditation and experiencing beauty and art in a meditative way. This film is itself a meditation on spiritual centeredness, experiencing beauty, and mindful discipline. Jim Jarmusch furthermore criticizes philosophical positivism and favors the right brain sensibility. The viewer is drawn into the main character's mind and sensibility through the cinematography, music, and just how slow the movie is. It's very calming, and after viewing the movie, makes me see the world differently, at least for a little while. It's no use to debate how logical this film is because once you start venturing into rationality (AKA the left brain), then you lose…
There are a few observations you can make quickly about THE LIMITS OF CONTROL. For instance, it's Jarmusch's least dialogue-centered movie, but also his loudest. Loudest not in terms of the soundtrack (which sometimes gets quite loud), but in terms of the images, which abandon Jarmusch's usual witty articulateness for a loudness worthy of Claire Denis or Sam Fuller; your eyes may go deaf. Maybe it's the influence of Christopher Doyle who, as a cinematographer, has always been an enabler; his willingness to chase after lights and shadows can have a liberating effect, but only on those directors who are willing to be liberated from their tastes (James Ivory and Gus Van Sant have steadfastly held on to theirs while…
I love this movie, its cool recursive telling. So great.
Its title (from a Burroughs essay) and much of the sparse dialogue undermine words as effective carriers of truth, therefore exalting images as truth's medium. And, Lo, there are beautiful images in the film. Making a fetish of detail and the act of looking, "no mobiles", the Lone Man sees everything as art.
This movie is a puzzle. There is a man that have to make a dangerous job involving diamonds and match box with codes and meet people with strange nicknames in Spain. Every time that he meets one person, he always ask for two cup of coffee and the person has a nickname. And has a naked girl with a transparent coat.
I love everything about this except maybe the last 15 mins or so. Those really brought the film down, otherwise this would've been an easy 4.5 star rating.
"The best films are like dreams you're never really sure you had."
Cinematic genius or pretentious navel gazing - hard to be sure.
I'd say - full marks for form, substance maybe not so much, unless form is substance then full marks all round.
"He who thinks he is bigger than the rest must go to the cemetery. There he will see what the world really is. It's a handful of dirt."
"Fucking bohemians on hallucinogenic drugs."
Throughout this whole film I was thinking ‘how in the hell is shot after shot after shot composed so damn well; how is the colour in shot after shot after shot so damn exquisite.’ Then I saw the end credits list Christopher Doyle as the DP. ‘Oh, okay, that makes sense, nevermind.’
The 2015 edition of the They Shoot Pictures, Don't They? 21st Century's Most Acclaimed Films list.
Incomplete data forced the…
A list with film titles that could easily have been titles of porn movies.
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