The Forbidden Room
Action / Comedy / Mystery
The Forbidden Room
Action / Comedy / Mystery
A never-before-seen woodsman mysteriously appears aboard a submarine that's been trapped deep under water for months with an unstable cargo. As the terrified crew make their way through the corridors of the doomed vessel, they find themselves on a voyage into the origins of their darkest fears.
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March 10, 2016 at 10:14 AM
Hypno inducing and dreamy
It is impossible to talk about the movie without mentioning the ongoing project Seances dot nfb dot ca. What can you say... It's Guy Madding, Evan Johnson and Galen Johnson, so expect to be in a trance for two hours. The amazing soundtrack will put anyone to sleep (which is not a bad thing!). I tend to disagree with some viewers when they comment that the movie is "non-linear". I find it to be absolutely linear, with it's nested stories driving you towards a path that is much like a dream, if you could actually recall one. A story within a story, within a story... But its absolutely perfectly structured, with a beginning middle and end for each story. I recommend watching multiple times, preferably in bed just before going to sleep. You'll realize that all the judder from your mind is silenced, and the movie will carry you to your own forbidden room.
Not the best
In fairness, this sounds like quite a good idea on paper. A bunch of lost movies from the silent era have been put on film by using old reviews as building blocks. What's more, the idea of visually representing this material by way reproducing the look of old film stock and silent movie techniques seems like a pretty good one. But what it ultimately comes down to is that old adage that some ideas sound far better on paper than they are in practise. At the outset I was pretty much on board with this one and appreciating the visual ideas and general oddness of the content but after half an hour or so I was basically struggling. The visual style, while well done, is basically so relentless that it becomes increasingly difficult keeping your mind on any of the content. So much so that for the most part of this I was staring at it as you would wallpaper. Pretty wallpaper admittedly but staring at a wall for extended periods is hard going and ultimately a somewhat mind-numbing endeavour.
I don't think there is any point summarising the plot. I cannot see what good that could possibly achieve. But suffice to say that that the material is dealt with in a part surrealist, part absurdist manner. There is even a few interesting actors involved in this as well but they are pretty much lost is the mix also. As I said earlier there is an interesting visual aesthetic at play here and the concept has potential as an idea but, despite all this, I found this to be a thoroughly unengaging experience. It felt way too long clocking in at two hours as well and, in the final analysis, I more or less hated watching this interminable film.
Read more IMDb reviews
The Forbidden Fruit.
Despite having seen him mentioned a number of times,I've never found a good "entry point" to start with looking at the work of film maker Guy Maddin.Getting the wonderful chance to host an event on IMDb's Film Festival board,I was intrigued to find that a Maddin title had been nominated for viewing,which led to me stepping into the forbidden room.
The outline of the movie:
The film is based around short unrelated sketches that merge into each other with barely any connection. One of the stories involves a submarine crew eating flapjacks in order to get extra air from the air holes,who are left breathless,when a mysterious woodsmen is found in a dock,who has no idea how he got there.
View on the film:
Based on "lost" films which Maddin believed would only be seen if he made re-made them himself,Maddin and editor John Gurdebeke work closely together to unleash a rupturing nightmare atmosphere. Washing the screen in volcanic reds,Maddin & Gurdebeke blend the titles in a rugged manner,where the acid reds screech between each changing "dream/nightmare."
Inspired by reviews of films which are believed lost,the screenplay by Maddin/Evan Johnson/ Robert Kotyk/John Ashbery and Kim Morgan aim for a dream-logic anthology,spanning disconnected stories which fade in/out at regular intervals. Despite this approach keeping the films focus constantly changing,it also causes the flick to get stuck in a surprisingly sluggish dead-end,due to there being no attempt to give any character the vaguest impression,and the writers giving the recurring stories no feeling of purpose over there return,in a forbidden room that should remain locked.