Saturday 22 January 2011

Requiem for a Dream (2000) - Darren Aronofsky

Nothing I say can prepare you for this.

Aronofsky’s second film is a highly disturbing cinematic representation of addiction.  His frenetic directorial style pushes cinematic limits to the extreme: the pacing is sometimes spaced-out and languid and at other times hyperactive with frequent use of swift cuts and montages; at times the camera is still, at others it judders out of control; the camera cuts from extreme close up shots to distant long shots.  The music and use of sound further the disturbing ambience from distortion to silence.

It dizzyingly puts you in the position of the four protagonists as their lives plummet into desperation and despair, fuelled by their addictions and dependencies, peppered with cruel yet sublime fantasies.

And then the last harrowing half hour hits, despair and fantasy reaching fever pitch, a whirlwind of events that push the characters, and the viewer, to the very limits of humanity.


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