The Souvenir

The Souvenir ★★★★½

This film has a very show-don’t-tell approach, one that almost reads as lacking in pathos, which left me pretty cold on first viewing but was far less elusive this time around. It doesn’t lack pathos, it’s more like a sledgehammer blow delivered in 100 smaller fragments that you don’t realize are happening and almost never come to any sort of conclusion emotionally. I wondered if fact that it was conceived as a two-part film contributed to my feeling incomplete the first time around, waiting for some sort of catharsis or finality that doesn’t arrive, but I think the last two shots are much more like a beginning than an end that I was left unsettled and incapable of accessing my own reaction to the experience on first viewing. I’m very anxious to see the second part and planning to view either today or tomorrow while this is still fresh in my mind.

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