Father and Son (2004)
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Critic Reviews for Father and Son
Although Father and Son is never as deep or wrenching as Mother and Son, the careful casting and Sokurov's unique visual style continue to make this a series worth following.
Here was my question for most of this movie: Wha-? I was clueless. Did not understand.
The best way to watch Father and Son is to let it wash over you and not be overly concerned with prosaic matters like plot.
Poised and teasing in a way that might incite less patient viewers to madness. But you don't come to Sokurov for his narrative agility, you come for his rhapsodic longueurs.
The opacity of the characters and situations prevents the film from having any true emotional impact.
Audience Reviews for Father and Son
Avant-garde to the extreme, this film plays out like it really wants to be a smart, artistic film with beautiful imagery and little dialogue, but it really just comes off banal and a half-assed attempt at something truly poetic. Everything symbolic feels trite or so dense that Sokurov's metaphors are lost within everything else. Only a couple of moments did I feel like I was starting to understand what he was trying to say before he went and lost me again. Honestly, it felt like I was watching a foreign meldorama disguised as a foreign art film. There's a great deal of talk about the homo-erotic qualities to it; there are moments, but I could feel what he was trying to do was comment on the relationship of a father and his son and what that ultimately means, but all that needed to be subtext wasn't and all that needed to be said wasn't said at all. Whatever he was trying to convey, it got lost in his passion for trying to say it in the first place. The only thing I came out of it with was some nice cinematography.
Huh. An interesting product from Sokurov. I'm actually beginning to wonder if I have seen any Russian films other than from Sokurov. Here we have a very interesting relationship between a father and son that seems to border on relationship territory. Throw in a girlfriend and things are really weird..particularly in those long looks.
A Russian film that is erotic, enigmatic, and baffling. No plot, dialogue that serves more as poetic musings, and visually dreamy and gorgeous. People never just look at each other but gaze at each other, and the two leads are heavily muscled and mostly topless throughout the film. The backdrops are spectacular: a dreamily lit flat, the incredibly steep rooftop outside where the father and son leap about, the tall, squished-together buildings of their port city, the train and it's intricate levers and buttons...This film is more enjoyable if experienced like a dream: an experience about deep feelings, the deep psychic bond between a father and his son, and the sadness, loneliness, and fear for both when the son begins to detach from this bond to pursue a bond with a woman. The unusually intense connection between the father and the son borders on erotic, and it almost feels like viewers are being made deliberately disturbed by the intensity of certain scenes. Not overtly explicit or sexual. Very arty film: definitely an acquired taste.
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