December 24, 2013

Phantom (2013)

Phantom (2013) - Movie Review
Directed by: Jonathan Soler
Country: France

Movie Review: “Phantom” is an experimental drama wrapped in a dreamlike atmosphere and narrated completely in voice-off by its pair of protagonists. Jonathan Soler’s first feature film was shot in Tokyo, exposing a bunch of personal thoughts in Japanese about the world, life, and people, in a logical order. Since the beginning, I could anticipate what the story would be. A woman (Yuki Fujita) arrives home and goes to bed alone, but instantly begins a long conversation with her boyfriend (Masato Tsujioka) who appeared from nowhere. She confesses her sadness for not feeling useful in a world where people are evaluated for their status and salary. After this topic, a lot more would come, including the search for self-identity, financial problems, environmental issues, the changes of turning into adult, the roles played inside their families, and their dreams and hopes for the future. In precise moments, a clear connection could be found between the images and what was being told, but most of the time Soler gives us merely shots of the couple inside the room or walking along the city, all intercalated with Tokyo’s out-of-focus landscapes. I can understand this approach (once phantoms don’t talk or sleep, and got no influence in the world), even if sometimes its repetition didn’t allow a better outcome. Adopting Hong Sang-soo’s melancholic and talkative posture in order to point many of today’s main problems, “Phantom” is far from being faultless, but definitely is a film to discover for whoever fancies different experiences.

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