La Mort en direct (Death Watch) (Death in Full View) (1980)
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as Katherine Mortenhoe
as Vincent Ferriman
as Gerald Mortenhoe
as Girl in the Bar
as Harry Graves
as Katherine's Dad
Critic Reviews for La Mort en direct (Death Watch) (Death in Full View)
While it may be conceptually rooted in science fiction, 'Death Watch' is essentially melodramatic in tone and execution: it was shot in late '70s Glasgow with not a shiny jumpsuit or flying car in sight.
Tavernier slips in subtle touches that seem meaningless and would normally have a big circle around it and an arrow pointing at it and saying "look at me, I'm important," but instead reinforce the droning, impersonal nature of this particular society.
It's an exciting tale about self-respect and personal autonomy in a society where privacy and personal identity are being steadily eroded and it's as topical today as when it was made.
Much like Lumet's Network, Death Watch grows only more unsettling as the years pass.
So deliriously improbable is its blend of contributing elements, and so prescient is its peculiar version of the future, that you can almost forgive this curio the rather tepid character drama that holds together all its odd particulars.
Audience Reviews for La Mort en direct (Death Watch) (Death in Full View)
Perhaps too intellectual and character-driven to satisfy Sci-Fi fans, Bertrand Tavernier's futuristic tale of media and what would soon become "reality TV" is a dead-on dark glimpse into humanity and human cruelty. The film also features unique departures for both Harry Dean Stanton and Harvey Keitel. Both actors are given the opportunity to play characters unlike what we are used to seeing them play. And, as always, one is reminded of the cinematic power and charm of the late Romy Schneider. Dark, disturbing and provocative cultural commentary.
(***): [img]http://images.rottentomatoes.com/images/user/icons/icon14.gif[/img] Interesting and well-acted.
More of a drama than one would expect from the plot summary, this is a great little film that probably rings truer today than when it was made, which made it seem like a sci fi.
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