The Loneliest Planet Reviews
The truth is "The Loneliest Planet" is a hard film to review because it is contingent on one scene (really one physical movement) an hour into the picture, that I can't really talk about. But what I can say is that the latter half of the movie (after the big scene) although consists of Bernal and Furstenberg continuing to walk around the Caucasus Mountains (mostly in silence) is quite a moving piece of cinema that does show off Loktev's Malick-esque directorial skills.
On the other hand, this film is not for everybody. What will ultimately hold this back for many, will be the (at times) too Independent for its own good feel of the entire picture, as Loktev holds on shots for minutes at a time where nothing seems to be going on, and spends a lot of time filming characters ad-libbing their dialogue. Other issues may come down to the free flowing (slow) pacing of "The Loneliest Planet", which may leave many walking out of this movie questioning: Was Loktev's introspective inquiries really worth the journey?
Final Thought: In my opinion this sort of Avant-garde piece about a couple under duress is very much a film geared more towards female audiences. That is to say, the main focus is not Bernal. He is only the vehicle that helps show the nature of the male counterpart. The real star of the show here is Furstenberg, who displays the complex prospective of a female outlook on relationships exceptionally well, and thusly what she goes through should be more fully understood by female audiences. That is not to say that men will not enjoy this film, but for most men, "The Loneliest Planet" may be too hard of a pill to swallow. Plus, if you are currently a male in a relationship, this is one movie that may only serve to plant the seed of an awkward conversation (which in turn, probably is the point).
Written by Markus Robinson, Edited by Nicole I. Ashland
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But what the audio of the movie does not pick up oddly enough is usually the sound of conversation, not only between the lovers as they trek in this microcosm of a relationship where trust is paramount, but also in the way curious people of different cultures exchange information about each other, even if Alex and Nica have drifted far enough away that English is no longer the lingua franca. Out of the drips and drabs of talk that we do get, it can be inferred that Nica, having traveled a great deal already in her young life, is ready to settle down at the age of 30 before hauling her future kids all over the place to see her favorite sights.
What gives the second half of this movie its honesty, darkness and gritty charm is a moment-long hot flash that seems like forever, because it's the first time Alex and Nica shot together has a joint feeling of watching two naked people scared and alone left to their own devices. It's some of the most quietly devastating film 2012 can shake a stick at, in a beautifully realized work that should be noted and appreciated both for its narrative invention and reflection on the difficulty of relationships. "The Loneliest Planet" brims dizzily with idea and understanding -- unforgettable, irreversible, and that haunts like no other.
Part of the beauty of The Loneliest Planet is the fact that's its largely told in images and action, it's nearly wordless. Really who says silent filmmaking is dead. The film is a beautiful collage that impacts the aural and visual senses, demonstrating an astonishing artistic sensibility. Every shot and scene shows the excitement and sometimes sheer terror of guiding and being guided through unknown terrain, on an emotional and physical level. And take care to try and catch the telling moment that could potentially change everything Alex and Nica know about one another. The Loneliest Planet is vital, beautiful filmmaking, a treatise on how no individual can outrun basic emotions of loneliness and yearning, even while exploring the very ends of the earth. It's some kind of miracle.
The extreme long shots that last eight minutes accompanied by meditative music attempt to take us to these mountains and see what the characters cannot.
The unflinching takes of monotonous conversation aim to bring you into the relationship of two people that feel utterly comfortable with each other.
At the same time, the long takes capturing a relentless silence will tell us much more about them than anything they can say. There is a lot in a relationship that remains in the dark, words that go unsaid and thoughts go unexpressed. Much of a relationship is built on what is not said. This film captures that quiet crumbling of a superficial relationship based on conjugating verbs and headstands. It asks but never answers the questions: what does it mean to be a man, a coward, independent, in love, alone? Well done.