Victoria ★★★★★

My single continues take of a German film that lasts 2 hours and 19 minutes!

No, it's not a film that I made, that was just an expression. Because oh the victory in Victoria! It is one of the few feature films out there done in a single continuous take, and mind you, I think this is the first one of this kind that I've watched. Not only did it impress me, but it amazed me. I just need to state what a high level of skill it needs to take to shoot a more than two hour long film in one take. It takes incredible acting and camera control to do this. After all is said and filmed, that's not even the best thing about Victoria. What excels most of all, is the degree of authenticity and realism that is captured in this film. You still get the sense that it is a scripted film, however almost every little movement and word said feels as though the camera was just there present on one odd night out in Berlin, Germany. The four men act like how any of us would act on a drunk night out. The lead, Victoria (Laia Costa), falls in effortlessly into the role of young, outgoing and not-a-lot-to-lose woman. The camera never leaves her presence and she never fails to keep the audience engaged. The only drawbacks that I would point out from this film is that it does get a tad bit slow at the junction between the first and second act, and the ending was a bit too fair, or might I say, happy. I do not want to get into it any further as I'm afraid I might spoil it for those who have not seen it yet.

Victoria is not flawless, but it's pretty fucking great. The start is an energetic white-greyish glowing light flashing quickly with the club music blasting in the background (WARNING: this could be dangerous for people who are sensitive to flashing lights), and it immediately creates a believable crime underbelly, nightlife in Berlin. Through it all, Victoria steadily manufactures and maintains an emotional bond between the audience and its lead, and perhaps as well, to a lesser extent the male lead, Sonne. Victoria really takes off through the middle of the second act into the third act, and it will surprise you where it takes you. All along I was thinking Mad Max: Fury Road was by far the best film released in 2015, little did I know there was an ambitious German film I had not watched yet that is not that far behind, until now.

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