Author Topic: An Elephant Sitting Still (2019)  (Read 331 times)

An Elephant Sitting Still (2019)
« on: March 15, 2019, 10:23:36 AM »
Anyone else seen this? I think it's a contender for my favourite ever film, definitely favourite ever ending.

It's four hours and the reviews make it seem overwhelmingly depressing, but it's completely absorbing and immersive (great camera-work), and while grim, there are always things happening (the main subplot is about revenge).

If you're going to torrent it, try get a recent torrent (some of the older ones have a different soundtrack and title sequence, and it does make a difference).

Blinder Data

  • Use your library
Re: An Elephant Sitting Still (2019)
« Reply #1 on: March 15, 2019, 10:31:30 AM »
I wish I was brave enough to sit through a four hour Chinese film that's bound to be grim and depressing. Rather regret not plucking up the courage when it played (the once) at my local arthouse.

Very sad that the director topped himself.

Re: An Elephant Sitting Still (2019)
« Reply #2 on: March 15, 2019, 10:54:18 AM »
I can't watch most depressing films, mainly out of a cynical view that it's easier to make a sad piece of art than a happy one (same way I think it's easier to write a 20 minute post-rock song than a genuinely great pop song).

I can't go as far as to say the film isn't grim, but some of the subplots are straight-forwardly dramatic (a girl dating a vice-principal, a guy out for revenge, the target of that revenge trying to hide, etc). It keeps things moving and for that reason, I didn't find it as depressing as something like Stroszek. Certainly the ending is a lot more hopeful.

I watched it in a cinema, so that kept me focused (couldn't mindlessly browse the internet on my phone, out of habit). Although if it's downloaded / on DVD, you can have an intermission, which probably helps.

Anyway, if you ever get the urge, give it a go!

Re: An Elephant Sitting Still (2019)
« Reply #3 on: March 15, 2019, 11:00:02 AM »
Apparently one of the things that may have contributed to him topping himself is that the producer wanted to reduce it to 2 hours. I came away thinking that would've been impossible, it would've just been incident after incident with little in between. So ... I guess the full 4 hour film being shown and getting great reviews is sort of a good thing.

Z

  • The movie, not the TV series, or the book
Re: An Elephant Sitting Still (2019)
« Reply #4 on: March 17, 2019, 11:40:33 PM »
Set out to see this several times last month and could just never motivate myself to go into the screening. Is the Elephant in the title in some way a reference to Van Sant's Elephant? Cos every shot I've seen looked a lot like that film

BlodwynPig

  • Throwing two dogs at a goblin
Re: An Elephant Sitting Still (2019)
« Reply #5 on: March 17, 2019, 11:43:29 PM »
what's it about?

Re: An Elephant Sitting Still (2019)
« Reply #6 on: March 18, 2019, 01:08:54 AM »
I am an elephant sitting still in a room different from the one you are in now. I am recording the sound of my speaking voice and I am going to play it back into the room again and again until the resonant frequencies of the room reinforce themselves so that any semblance of my speech, with perhaps the exception of rhythm, is destroyed. What you will hear, then, are the natural resonant frequencies of the room articulated by speech. I regard this activity not so much as a demonstration of a physical fact, but more as a way to smooth out any irregularities my speech might have.

Re: An Elephant Sitting Still (2019)
« Reply #7 on: Yesterday at 05:40:30 AM »
Set out to see this several times last month and could just never motivate myself to go into the screening. Is the Elephant in the title in some way a reference to Van Sant's Elephant? Cos every shot I've seen looked a lot like that film

It's not a reference to that, although now you mention it, those long steadicam shots are reminiscent of Van Sant / Alan Clarke (apparently Bela Tarr is the main inspiration but I've not seen anything by him).


Re: An Elephant Sitting Still (2019)
« Reply #8 on: Yesterday at 05:41:46 AM »
what's it about?

There are four main interlocking stories: a boy who accidentally decks the school bully; the school bully's brother looking for revenge (also, the husband of the woman he's having an affair with commits suicide that morning); a school girl having an affair with the vice-principal; an old man whose son wants to put him in an old folks' home (and his dog is killed by an arrogant middle-class couple's big dog that morning). Gradually and separately, they hear about an elephant in a nearby zoo, who just sits down calmly and ignores the outside world, and plan to go see it (this is a bit surreal, but is played completely straight). Amazing film.

BlodwynPig

  • Throwing two dogs at a goblin
Re: An Elephant Sitting Still (2019)
« Reply #9 on: Yesterday at 02:24:57 PM »
thank you

Absorb the anus burn

  • New Avatar coz I'm dead drunk like, la.
Re: An Elephant Sitting Still (2019)
« Reply #10 on: Yesterday at 02:30:42 PM »
I am an elephant sitting still in a room different from the one you are in now. I am recording the sound of my speaking voice and I am going to play it back into the room again and again until the resonant frequencies of the room reinforce themselves so that any semblance of my speech, with perhaps the exception of rhythm, is destroyed. What you will hear, then, are the natural resonant frequencies of the room articulated by speech. I regard this activity not so much as a demonstration of a physical fact, but more as a way to smooth out any irregularities my speech might have.

+1

(He he he)