Tuesday, June 2, 2009

LE SILENCE DE LORNA (Luc & Jeanne-Pierre Dardenne, 2008, Belgium) Lorna pays for her malignant silence with a pregnant guilt that begins to consume her spirit. She prostitutes her dignity to a foreign man, her body owned by a pimp, in order to save enough money to realize her tiny dream. The plan: she marries a drug addict to become a legal Belgian citizen, then a divorce (or accident) separates the two and she is free to marry a wealthy Russian exile thus giving him legal status. But she begins to feel shame over her deeds, her body only worth a few thousand euros; her humanity drained and emptied, she becomes a hollow vessel that can no longer feel love. Her future plans begin to evaporate because she can no longer live this lie. Eventually, her pimp realizes that she is no longer a useful ingredient for his success. The Dardenne brothers once again film with hand-held cameras, their cinema of truth bringing Lorna into sharp focus as an individual, shooting her in many close-ups amid realistic settings, eschewing the soundstage or other faux backgrounds and taking to the streets. They specialize in long takes and realistic dialogue, as if we are peering into the very personal lives of the characters. The film utilizes diegetic music so a structured score doesn’t intrude upon the narrative, creating an almost documentary feel to the story. It’s only in the very last moments of Lorna’s isolation, curled up like a fetus, that a forlorn piano haunts the soundtrack. (B+)

1 comment:

Joseph B. said...

Welcome to the LAMB! Always nice to have new faces around.