Very Slow Movies
53 6.4 5.81. Wavelength (1967)
Just a 45-minute zoom. Not quite minimalist - stuff happens - all within that inexorable zoom.
Wavelength is not an easy film to find (at least on film); when I saw it at a local avant-garde film screening, you could hear the nervous creaking of seats as spectators tried to take in a unique visual experience. Odd effect at the end of the film: even though, like the other spectators, the film made me uncomfortable, the first thing I wanted to do when it ended was see it again.
109 8.2 7.72. Jeanne Dielman, 23 Quai du Commerce, 1080 Br... (1975)
The slowest narrative film I've ever seen, "Jeanne Dielman" is the 'poetry of everyday life' in the most literal sense. Most of this film's 200+ minutes shows the title character engaged in common domestic chores: cooking, doing the dishes, cleaning, and (to avoid 'spoilers') other perhaps more exciting (?) activities.
It took me about a half hour to get into the rhythm of the film; at first I was tempted to just give up on it (nothing's going to happen!) but I glad I stuck with it. Often read (probably correctly) as a feminist manifesto, I like to think of "Dielman," like "Wavelength," as an indication of one thing the cinema can do well, if it does it rarely.
40 7.8 7.23. The Long Day Closes (1992)
"The Long Day Closes" is a beautifully shot meditation on memory, where (as with anyone's reminiscences) ordinary life is transformed into the extraordinary. Who would have thought a shot of a carpet could be utterly fascinating?
137 7.8 7.54. La Belle Noiseuse (1991)
100 7.4 7.15. The Scent of Green Papaya (1993)
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