Saturday, 14 July 2012

Shame- Steve McQueen/Abi Morgan

Warning: spoilers and rude words.

I joked about watching this film a few weeks back, too many hilariously unfunny jokes about Fassbender’s manhood put me off; however, having watched it now, it was deeper than I expected. Note to self, trailers and reviews ‘best’ bits are often the worst bits. But please keep reading here of course.

This film was realistically brilliant; seedy, depressing, unromantic, lacking in intimacy, occasionally (the running scene) reminded me of an action movie, then it had hints of Sex and the City (naturally), some humour, some uncomfortable points but mostly humanity and relationships and its failings. And Carey Mulligan was au fait with messed up, such a dimpliscious lovely, and this with only a hint of an English accent, sat on a sofa once, slightly cracking up then (SPOILER) slashed her wrists. (She also sang for a bit too long)

Meanwhile Brandon (Fassbender) wanks, pulls, wanks, watches porn, wanks, uses prostitutes and so on and so on. Throughout there is an overwhelming sense of tragedy and loneliness to which dismally, he exercises control over, spiralling out of control when his sister ‘Sissy’ turns up and creates havoc with her contrasting haphazardness and emotion. We see men and women, people generally, deal with unyielding love so differently, to cut off completely or hang on to desperately.  Both in this situation cause promiscuity, physically and emotionally. Dystopic love.

Don’t expect a journey with this film; it’s a repetitive pattern of bad behaviour that comes from something purer that most will judge. If you want a comfortable film and happy ending, this one isn’t for you.

Its interesting and surprising though…and not just about sex. Its about patterns of behaviour to cover up old patterns of behaviour while not really dealing with what’s causing the pattern of behaviour in the first place, you know when people talk of magic realism, this one’s real realism. Good old-fashioned shameful carry ons.

Perhaps the answer is not to feel shame.

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