Burning Man

August 19, 2012 No Comments

Rating;  7,.5/10

Burning Man is a searing portrayal of immolation by relentless grief.

Gee, entertaining?????  Aren’t movies supposed to be entertaining?

Yes.  Jonathan Teplinzky’s innovative film is a remarkable (if flawed) tracking of the non-linear recording of one man’s journey through tragedy and an attempt to capture/express/transcend the experience.   Tom (portrayed by the mesmerizingly intense and attractive Michael Goode) is a young man who has it ALL–loving, beautiful wife, intensely fulfilling career (successful  chef), adorable child and the swagger that announces that he knows it–suddenly shoved into the world of cancer and the relentless trekking–loss of health, loss of hair, loss of the beloved–that is forced upon him.

Director JonathanTeplizky utilizes a style that is elliptically  jumpy, visually overloaded and confusing, to invite us to feel the internal demolition of his protagonist.  Gutsy.  Does it work?  That is a question complicated by the limitations of the filmmaker AND  us (the audience).   Can we  do it?  Why do we want to?  The frenetic pacing of the early scenes of the film jar us and remind us that life passes in the wink of an eye.  Do films such as these merely depress us?  Do they offer  us any sort of way to make it feel worth it?

This is the kind of film whose images linger past the closing credits.  Tom is a chef who feeds others with style, but struggles with substance.  What will become of him?  Of us?  This film offers no escape from the inevitabilty, but manages to generate a sense of hope.  And that makes it a Must See Movie.      Jolyn Wagner

Must See Movie of the Week

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