USA / Germany / France
"Day Night Day Night ,"
an astonishing movie from Julia Loktev , begins in a state of heightened
ambiguity. The camera trails behind a young American woman (Luisa Williams ),
who is picked up by a stranger at a bus station somewhere. They ride in silence
and have a meal in silence, too. She's deposited at a hotel, where she has a
bath, eats a spring roll, and dozes off. Later a group of masked men in knit
hats and jumpsuits arrives to handcuff and blindfold her.
Through it all, she manages a gracious bearing. In fact, her manner is delicate. The sweet softness in her voice creates a nice contrast with the deep, sugarless intonations of the men who sit with her, bring her clothes and pizza, and put a rifle in her hands before recording her with a video camera. When she asks for a Kleenex to dab her nose (it's too shiny), there's still time to think "Day Night Day Night " is a paramilitary comedy.
Theatrical Release: May 25th, 2006 - Cannes Film Festival
DVD Review: IFC Films (Genius Ent.) - Region 1 - NTSC
|DVD Box Cover||
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|Distribution||IFC Films (Genius Ent.) - Region 1 - NTSC|
Average Bitrate: 5.20 mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s
NOTE: The Vertical axis represents the bits transferred per second. The Horizontal is the time in minutes.
|Audio||English (Dolby Digital 2.0)|
|Subtitles||English, Spanish, None|
Fairly dull and not especially sharp image on this IFC interlaced, single-layered transfer. We have noticed this is typical of IFC - anamorphic but non-progressive showing fairly prominent combing (see last capture). I *think* it was shot on digital but bumped to 35mm - anyway I don't suspect the combing is a function of the finished theatrical product. There are optional English or Spanish subtitles and an unpronounced audio track (limited dialogue abounds). On another notes I did enjoy some of the film's inventive shots and use of the camera framing (mise en scène).
There is a commentary from director Loktev where she talks about the impetus of the story - a news item about suicide bombers she noted while in Russia. She informs us of her penchant for uncanny storylines where the bizarre and normal collide forming a kind of irrational and questionable collusion. It is quite compelling and although she is soft-spoken she gets her points across quite articulately. She bounces from the narrative to production details in a composed manner. Also included are a 2 minute trailer.
The DVD weakness doesn't really hinder the film's impact although I did find the whole narrative a bit flawed in its pacing. Still the attempt is appreciated - producing an intriguing effort and I'll be keen to watch more from Loktev in the future.
For a stronger film, in my opinion, on a female suicide bomber see The Terrorist.