Calendar

Screen Earthbound

Published on December 28th, 2014 | by Marc Calhoun

0

Under the Skin

Earthbound and down.

I was recently reminded, (in a rather cruel way) of how engaging and meaningful the ideas of the science-fiction genre are.  When most Hollywood movies seem to be a remake or based on a comic book, we can often look to sci-fi for the fantastically visual and cerebrally interesting.

uskin7

Case in point: the new Jonathan Glazer film, Under the Skin.  It is optically wonderful as well as meditative and desolate (both visually and emotionally).  There are some uncomfortable moments that are not visceral but situational.  Scarlett Johansson, taking a break from the blockbusters, plays the alien man-stalker.  She tries to pick up single men in order to take them to a dark place where some mystical alien goo engulfs them.  But things change and roles are reversed.  That’s pretty much the movie….

usin8

Except of course for how it feels.  Lonely, desolate, and alien, Under the Skin has the pacing of an 60’s art-house film, and the creepiness of a Twilight Zone episode.  The sound design is fantastic, and probably responsible for a large part of the uneasiness rampant in this film. Glazer has a style of his own (that certainly owes something to Kubrick, Lynch, and even Antonioni).  It is a singular film experience and one I would wholeheartedly recommend.

uskin1

But when thinking back to the merits of the sci-fi genre; the most impressive factor of Under the Skin is that it appears to be emotive-based science fiction as opposed to idea-based science fiction.  Nothing is revealed to us about this alien huntress, we as viewers are left to experience our world through her.  One of the most revealing scenes is when the protagonist gets utterly distorted in that crucible of late-20th century labyrinths: the mall. This alien can do few things well in this world  She has trouble talking to the men she hunts and no sense of working human groups and relationships. One sci-fi trademark notably absent from this film is any sort of advanced technology.  It is alluded to, but only by circles, colors and sounds.  Instead the movie relies on an impressionistic palette of displacement and isolation.

uskin6

Highly discussable and visually stunning, Under the Skin, is a fantastic cinematic anomaly, as well as another promising step on the continuously interesting path for Glazer.

View the original post on Total Echo

Tags: , , ,


About the Author

Marc Calhoun is a freelance writer/blogger/musician living in Providence RI. He currently presides over Total Echo (http://totalecho.wordpress.com/) and Micro/Macro Album Coverz (http://micro-macro-album.tumblr.com/). Feel free to check out his past radio shows (http://www.bsrlive.com/shows/same-old-song) or his own musical mishaps (https://soundcloud.com/roboticdeathhawk).



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>

Back to Top ↑
  • Too cool to be cool.

    This is NOT a review site. Squarepop.com is just the good stuff. We only share what we love.
  • Upcoming events

  • Tags