Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Journey From The Fall

I don't know what took me this long, but I just finished watching Journey From The Fall directed by Ham Tran a few hours ago. It's probably a bit premature to write about it, because I'm still in the process of unpacking what I think about it.

But it's pretty clear just from the opening shots that Ham Tran isn't just making your average movie. The storytelling seems to be a turn off for some people, since it skips and jumps through different points in time. Perhaps I'm just pretentious but this type of storytelling works well for me, it adds complexity to my response to the film, since often I know what's going to happen. It may make the film a bit more difficult to follow, but I kind of like having to piece things out for myself. And I think that Ham Tran also manages to craft a pretty convincing and effective narrative out of such a complex and challenging way of telling it.

The movie is pretty unrelenting, but none of the violence or plot developments seem unnecessary. Each character works according to their own type of logic but none of them seem forced or improbable. At the same time, Tran definitely tells the story by showing rather than telling. There's one particular scene that sticks in my mind, he never explicitly shows two characters being intimate, but simply the way that they interact in the scene speaks volumes about their relationship.

I've been on a run of horrible movies, the low low point being the totally awful Iron Man. So discovering Journey From The Fall, albeit belatedly, I heard about it on Angry Asian Man, was doubly a pleasure. Go find this movie and watch it.

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