I think I have a lot of trouble today with the didactic and the pédagogisme in movies, especially when it is excessive and there was no proposal aesthetic behind it, as if the audience was too stupid to understand about ambiguous or whistleblower of a phenomenon. Unfortunately, Women Talking has a tendency to fall into this trap, at the expense of a strong message and a visual quality interesting.
The film is adapted from a novel, itself inspired by a true story that took place in Bolivia, where a colony of sisters was regularly drugged and raped. Passing it the violence for attendance demonic, the men end up not being noticed. And during their long absences outside of the colony, several of the women get together to know what to do, between fighting or fleeing the only world she knows.
There are lots of interesting things covered in the film: the terms and conditions of these women, the illiterate, confined in spite of themselves, and who have lived in the community throughout their lives. But the fact that it is filmed in a very Hollywood misrepresents that realism is cruel and therefore takes on a twist of the order of the story (intended, apparently, by the director), but is struggling to pass the violence experienced by these women.
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The fact that they do not show any rape is a bias that is defensible, it is not necessary to shoot violence to make them feel. But as everything is mapped in the game, the setting, the intentions, the dialogues, it’s hard to capture their deep pain. The music is sometimes a little too omnipresent comes to seal some plans of real aesthetic beauty, and actresses, rather than anchoring their discussions in a real more raw, seem to play the oscar race in their interpretations. I find it a shame not to have been more subtle to capture the real hell that they have lived. By playing more often with silences, misunderstandings between them, and above all, the place of religion in these abuses.
The arguments which explode in the film are very often related to the report on religion and forgiveness: should we excuse these men who have so long abused women in the arrogant? A real moral question is difficult and that is very interesting aesthetically. But the film does ultimately not do a great thing, everything is played out on a few dialogues much too didactic. And the hatred repressed is represented here, too much on the surface, that by means of a few moments to explain why.
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The fact that it is largely closed forces the director to build on its dialogue to make his point, namely that the system causes men to commit such crimes. The same, the subject is interesting, and is addressed quite nuanced in the film. But it is frustrating to never enter the heart of all of this through the mise en scene. Women Talking sounds almost like a lesson and becomes very preachy and teaching, which makes you lose any substance to the aesthetic proposal of Sarah Polley.
Because yes, there are ideas of mise en scene, especially the fact that you do not date the period in which the movie takes place (we can guess, but it is never mentioned) by the prism of the sets and costumes are very Nineteenth century, but where some cars seem to belong in the Twenty-first. But also by the work of desaturation of the image, which turns to a black-and-white to slightly coloured, it is also a little troubled by the heaviness of the sequences of freedom dreamlike colourful.
This gives a universal movie, showing that regardless of whether the story unfolds in our days, or 200 years ago, the problem remains the same in this lack of understanding between men and women. The same for the character of Ben Whishaw, the only man in the film, defending the cause of these women, who falls into a lump of victim, and almost childish at the end as if it was just to cry its helplessness. It is a shame not to have to create the only male character more subtly to convey the same message: this human inability to understand what they have been able to live with these women, but who still support incredible voice.
Women Talking is this didacticism and does not have enough confidence in its bold setting but is weak. It retains most of the film as a lesson of humanity as a real shock to the senses despite these proposals. The lack of a way to make very Hollywood that does not benefit from this awful event evoked more subtly about a major and important. It falls very quickly, in the last 20 minutes, in the suffering-centeredness tearful.
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