Monday, June 22, 2009

"Don’t Look Now”

Director: Nicholas Roeg, 1973
A disturbing movie about an English couple grieving over the drowning death of their young daughter. Laura (Julie Christie) and John (Donald Sutherland) go to Venice to cope with their grief—and for John to work at restoring a church.
Water and religious images abound, as does the color red. Laura meets a pair of sisters, one of whom appears to have second sight. Their daughter is happy in the afterlife. John scoffs at first, then slowly believes he has glimpsed his daughter in the dark, eerie byways of Venice.
“Don’t Look Know” possesses a mesmerizing quality. Christie and Sutherland are believable as a married couple (there’s a famous lovemaking scene). The film is beautifully shot—no surprise since Roeg was an accomplished cinematographer before directing.
Based on a story by Daphne Du Maurier, whose work inspired two Hitchcock movies (“Rebecca,” “The Birds”).
The meaning of “Don’t Look Now” eludes me. Critic David Thomson writes that “in the end what it comes close to meaning is the lure of the death wish that calls itself luck.”
Since I’m not sure what Thomson is driving at, the best I can do to explain the film is this: when someone with second sight advises you to get out of Venice ASAP, you better get out of Venice ASAP.


Post a Comment

<< Home