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The Revenant - a documentary


Andrew Reid
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The Revenant is an obvious candidate for one of the most cinematographically spectacular films of the past year. Director Alejandro G. Iñárritu had a documentary crew following him from the start of principal photography in October 2014, following a gruelling shoot, 20th Century Fox have uploaded the entire 45 minute documentary to YouTube.

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Can there be a movie without political messages?

The 'global warming' and hate 'white men', as well as 'do not use resources' etc memes are destroying my enjoyment of extremely well crafted pieces of art.

If you haven't seen the movie, don't let this ham-fisted, preachy documentary deter you. The movie isn't that way. 

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Can there be a movie without political messages?

I say no, not really.

Even Michael Bay is making his jingoistic movie.  If one is not creating something with perspective and passion, then it's just craft.  Which is fine for some things, not so much for others.  And if you want to do something artistic, you need that.  Even unsophisticated passion interesting.  Isn't the opposite rather boring?  It's like looking at a Norman Rockwell painting or a Thomas Kinkade.

I think the reason that so many movies have a progressive political slant is simply because storytelling artist tend to be a more empathetic lot.  One has to be to willing and able to create characters with "truth" to them.  It's easier to get there if you project your feelings and emotions, rightly or wrongly.  

But whatever.  

I don't mind navigating the ideological minefield.  It's part of what makes life interesting.  If you want political parroting, there's plenty on on-line cacoons to wrap oneself in.

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I say no, not really.

Even Michael Bay is making his jingoistic movie.  If one is not creating something with perspective and passion, then it's just craft.  Which is fine for some things, not so much for others.  And if you want to do something artistic, you need that.  Even unsophisticated passion interesting.  Isn't the opposite rather boring?  It's like looking at a Norman Rockwell painting or a Thomas Kinkade.

I think the reason that so many movies have a progressive political slant is simply because storytelling artist tend to be a more empathetic lot.  One has to be to willing and able to create characters with "truth" to them.  It's easier to get there if you project your feelings and emotions, rightly or wrongly.  

But whatever.  

I don't mind navigating the ideological minefield.  It's part of what makes life interesting.  If you want political parroting, there's plenty on on-line cacoons to wrap oneself in.

Sure, all stories have a message, but the good ones don't lecture. We're humans and prefer to judge and figure things out on our own. Heck, we can't even stand dialog that just says it like it is rather than use subtext. The more the audience thinks they came to the conclusion on their own, the more powerful and lasting the message will be.

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Sure, all stories have a message, but the good ones don't lecture. We're humans and prefer to judge and figure things out on our own. Heck, we can't even stand dialog that just says it like it is rather than use subtext. The more the audience thinks they came to the conclusion on their own, the more powerful and lasting the message will be.

Exactly! This is what the movie accomplishes that the documentary did not. Depending on your point of view on any number of topics, you could draw different conclusions from the movie.

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the good ones don't lecture.

I don't disagree that heavy-handed crap is heavy-handed crap.  I just refuse to be offended by it and expect that sort of nonsense when online and watching certain things.  If I was offended everytime I saw something like this on the internet, I'd never have a chance not to be.

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I've just come back from cinema... Seen this film in 4K on big 11 x 4m screen. It was breathtaking. Every scene was thoroughly made. Composition, colour grading, dynamic range, even lens flares was pleasant to watch. Long one shot scenes, slow cut, stunning performance... Finally, I'm glad for visiting cinema!

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Saw it yesterday on the IMAX. I used to be really into Malick, Herzog, Tarkovsky and probably any other slow, elegiac-landscape director I could find (Sokurov springs to mind) but these days I have little patience for such films. If I want to enjoy the beauty of nature and life I go outside and open my eyes. The Revenant though was something else. It really impressed me in a serious way. It was sooo beautiful to watch on that huge screen - not just the images but the camera movement as it connected to the story. I'm even considering going to see it at the IMAX again because it will never be the same for me again. Even 4K on a 60" TV or projector won't cut it I don't think. I could talk about the film for ages but suffice to say I can't remember the last time I was so hooked on the actual physical experience of being in a cinema. Truly a work of art. I can't think of a better experience in terms of just soaking up cinematography (& not just pretty images but connected to the story). 

Really worth traveling to an IMAX to see before it's too late IMO. 

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