Friday, October 13, 2006

[French Film Fest] They Came Back (Les Revenants)

Walking Wounded

The horror... the horror!

No, the movie's nothing frightening, but in fact, it bored me to tears. You can literally take a piss, go to the snack bar, have a smoke, and return to the theatre, missing absolutely nothing. Half the time I was wondering whether something remotely interesting will crop up midway to quicken the pace, but I was dead wrong. The movie is meant to be painfully and excruciatingly slow, for it to bring forth its philosophy about life and death, and its abstract ideas about existentialism.

The big question presented, though it is hardly ever gonna come true anyway, is how will society react if the dead suddenly became alive again? The issues that are posed, from housing to employment to health care and even human rights (!), are those that are any government's nightmare. The movie begins with stoned elderly folks walking, and walking, and walking some more when the opening credits rolled, until it is said that the dead are walking the earth, and are quickly scrambled to makeshift holding areas while awaiting the relatives to come claim them, and for everyone else to try and make sense of this phenomenon.

Perhaps Heaven is getting crowded, or Hell has frozen over, that the departed need to return to the land of the living. They do not crave the blood of man, but rather, are finding ways to integrate back into society. Herein lies the opportunity for philosophy that is unappreciated by myself. There are different viewpoints presented via various characters, but all that is worth recalling, is that the dead are not pleased to be alive, and those alive are absolutely clueless as to what to do next. Bottom line is, let sleeping dogs lie.

One thing's for sure, I don't really like abstract zombies. Give me those that crave for flesh and blood anytime!

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