"It's funny how the colors of the real world only seem really real when you viddy them on the screen."

Sunday, March 10, 2013

When Time Becomes a Woman

The title is intriguing.  Does it mean when a woman is better with time, as in it makes her more becoming?  Or does it mean that time, the concept, actually turns into or becomes personified as a woman?

At the beginning, it felt like the latter was the case.  And I was curious how it would play out.  A woman is meandering down a rocky beach, all dressed in white, oblivious to a man chasing her - of course he's all in black.  He catches up to her, and she's disinterested in his motives.  She's happy on her own.  But he needs her desperately because, "Time is running out."  Ah ha!  And I started to try to puzzle it all out:  If she's time, is he knowledge??  The idea of personifying concepts kept me interested for the first twenty minutes or so.  But then the story turned out to be about something else entirely, and I struggled to watch the rest.

It was like a whole movie of Jacob talking with the Man in Black from Lost at a point when you don't yet know their family history.  It's perplexing, but it's brief and within a larger plot line, and you're eventually rewarded with a story that makes sense in a weird kind of way.  Lost is more or less internally coherent even though it's entirely unrealistic:

When Time Becomes a Woman is science fiction, and, like most sci-fi, it has a philosophical bent.  Unfortunately, I found the science implausible, and the philosophy overdone.  It's about good and evil, black and white, male and female, change and stability, destruction and creation....  But I didn't come away with anything new about them.

Two people just talking for an entire film is a risky venture.  It worked with My Dinner with Andre because it was as if we were eavesdropping on a very interesting conversation at the next table.  This doesn't work because, really, the story gets dull and the actors seem like they're in an improv setting where they're expected to go with whatever crazy idea the other one dreams up.  And these two got really carried away!

It's an award-winning film, and other reviews love it.  It's just not for me.  It kept my attention for a while, though, so I'll give it a C.   

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