On Tuesday night, JD, Sophie, Gunther and I went to UK premiere of the Holy Motors premiere.
For those of you who haven’t heard of Holy Motors, I’m not sure I can help much with telling you what it is about. Holy Motors is in the David Lynch spectrum of weird. I went into it having seen previews, but ultimately not knowing what it is about. I finished watching it still not really knowing what it was about. That is, I don’t really know what was going on plot wise. Hell, I haven’t even decided if I enjoyed it!
The best synopsis I can give you is this:
Holy Motors follows a day in the life of Monsieur Oscar. He spends his day in a limousine, travelling between appointments set up by an unknown employer. Each appointment requires Oscar to transform into a new character and act out a segment of their life.
If you are looking for a film with a logical plot that has a beginning, middle and end, then this movie will disappoint. If you enjoy an art house film with evocative images and themes, then this might interest you. If you want to be confused for two hours, you will love it.
My brief take on the film is that Monsieur Oscar’s story is an allegory for life. Each appointment is a vignette on themes such as love, life, art, creation, death, celebrity. But ultimately, the over arching motif is hypothesis on attempting to prolong our lives by living (or acting) through others, and the consequences to one’s psyche in neglecting to live one’s own life. Either that, or the director just chucked a bunch of surrealist stories together and the whole thing is a meaningless exercise in directorial masturbation. It’s happens. Maybe I should read a few essays or something.
While I enjoyed the ride, I am not sure I think it was a great film. This isn’t a film review site (although I have always wanted to start one of those…) so I won’t complete my thoughts here.
Following the screening, the cinema had a Q & A session with director, Leos Carax and Kylie Minogue. The actual Q & A session was at the Curzon in Mayfair, however we
couldn’t afford missed out on tickets, so we enjoyed the Q & A via live video link (along with 35 cinemas across the country).
Leos was an interesting character. He wore sunglasses and fiddled with a cigarette in his hands for the entire event. during the His responses often seemed, unintelligent. Or at least uninterested. It was either that, or he was incredibly shy in front of an audience and simply didn’t want to be there.
Kylie on the other hand was quite at ease in the spot light. This is unsurprising given she has been in the spot light for the last 20 years. However, she also seemed genuinely humbled to be apart of the film and to have the opportunity to participate in the event.
Unfortunately, the event proved that it’s risky to take unfettered questions from the audience at such events. This was demonstrated by one audience member, who was granted the opportunity to ask a question after jumping up and down and holding her arm up like a precocious school girl who thought she knew all the answers to the teacher’s questions.
Kylie, I am your biggest fan! I have all your albums and I missed my birthday today so that I could be here for you! I have brought this book along and I was wondering if you could sign it?! Singer, dancer, actor – you have done everything – I think you’re amazing!!!!!!!!
I’m paraphrasing, but I think my summary is pretty accurate.
Kylie (usually the bubbly, all-teeth-and-smiles, glamour-puss) frowned. She then proceeded to go to town on the mole.
This event is about Leos Carax’s amazing film. Everyone has come here to ask questions and hear about the craft and skill that went into the film. This is currently being streamed to 21 cinemas across the UK , so I am not sure why you chose this moment to do this. I am quite embarrassed as we are not here to talk about my singing career. I am quite excited to hear more about Leos’ motivations behind the film as is everyone else, so I really wish you hadn’t wasted this question on me.
As far as my career goes, there are a million things I haven’t done. If I felt I had “done acting” then I never would have chased this role or had the opportunity to be in the film. I’d really like to turn to someone else now so we can focus on the film, sorry.
Oh, and happy birthday.
[As you can see, I love using block quotes]
Again, I’m paraphrasing here, but if my memory serves me well (what day is it today?) then I believe the sentiment of my summary is pretty accurate.
Many might consider Kylie’s response harsh, however I tend to disagree. This is the first truly serious acting role for Kylie Minogue since she moved into Ramsay Street as Charlene Robinson, nee Mitchell back in the 1980s. Sorry, her second truly serious role. I forgot about Street Fighter.
Kylie really busted out her acting chops for this role and, even though it was a minor cameo, it was an important role and she absolutely delivered. The film was beautiful, surreal and complex – the kind of film that demands conversation. Kylie clearly wanted to talk about the film. Everyone in the room wanted to ask questions about the film. And here, we have this lady who wants to waste the limited question time gushing over how wonderful Kylie looks in gold hot pants. It was an embarrassing display and a waste of everyone’s time.
Perhaps I am being harsh. It was her birthday after all. I just don’t understand why she couldn’t have approached Kylie after the Q & A when she undoubtedly would have signed autographs.
Besides, it was nice to see Kylie bite with a bit of venom!