April 24, 2008

Drawing Restraint 9 (2005)

So let's say you had 144 minutes to kill on a Sunday and just HAPPENED to come into the possession of a copy of Matthew Barney's latest magnum opus starring his girlfriend Björk - Drawing Restraint 9. To be honest I've never watched any of Barney's stuff except a few clips from his 14 minute sequence of Destricted - 'Hoist'. If you never heard of Destricted, you probably never will, suffice it to say that Barney's sequence involves big heavy industrial machinery, lots of mouldable matter, bodily fluids and various parts of the male anatomy. In that respect, Drawing Restraint 9 is not different. Aside from being on a much larger scale and being much longer, it also has the advantage of having Björk's music as soundtrack. I loved the aesthetics - from the grandiose aerial shots to the amazingly composed tableaus to the over-the-top costumes. If you can, it helps to see it on a big screen. It would be unfair to talk about the plot, or lack thereof, seeing how it's not really that type of film. Some of the 'acting' seemed a little cumbersome at times and some of the costumes looked like they were good on paper, but once someone tries to walk in those bone fish-fin-shoe-flip-flops all wrapped in fur and strapped with a seashell on their back you realize that costume was really not made for movement. Overall I liked the way it looked and really that is enough for me to like something. It's not perfect, and very much not for everybody, but for what it is, that is a hardcore arthouse flick that is so niche it didn't even make it to DVD, I can say it was well worth my 2 hours and a half.