As you might be able to tell, writing blog posts doesn’t come as easily to me as it used to. And it’s not for a lack of content – on the contrary, it’s for a lack of time due to the abundance of content. Travels plus personal life moments plus trying to focus more on the here and now (people right in front of me) have led to a lot of life experience without feeling the need to ruminate or document. When I saw the movie “Columbus” upon the recommendation of my Art Dealer boss, I was prepared for the possibility that I could love it so much that I NEED to write about it. So here it is.
I think it’s worth saying that you have to be open to this kind of movie to actually enjoy it. If you know you don’t like measured movies that focus on cinematography and the visual sense of a purposely constructed world, then you simply won’t enjoy it. I knew I should see this movie because I like other movies similar to it – ones that are as minimal as they are maximal, i.e. Marie Antoinette or Rabbit Hole, et cetera. I’m coming to realize that my sensibility in art really does translate to all facets of my taste in all interests. So it makes sense that the films that most affect me are the ones that have the same poetic effect that I try to achieve in my drawings and paintings… balanced, delicate, emotional.
I’m not going to call this a film review because it’s not. I don’t really like to write about things that I don’t like. I like to use this space to hash out my feelings on what I DO like – things I want to stay with me. And this movie is staying with me. What is it about? … So little and yet so much. You can find plenty online or just watch the trailer:
I get it; the trailer can feel contrived if you’re really not into this sort of thing. I think to some degree, all movies do follow a formula because ultimately it’s entertainment and it’s story telling. The visuals are undeniably compelling because the architecture is so crazily modern to the point where it feels like it was made specifically for this movie. The symmetry and the asymmetry are exact and serve as these things that define space – physical and emotional
— Spoiler Alert — (as if I need to do that)
The entire movie is more or less just conversations. Dialogue about family, dialogue about architecture, dialogue about attention and meaning. The main characters are attracted to one another in a way they don’t seem to understand, but it’s obvious. They respect one another almost immediately, they confide in one another because they’re essentially random strangers, and they become emotionally tied together because maybe they feel the other sees things in a way they wish they could. Jin prioritizes his mundane work and feels burdened by being trapped in a small town to stick around for his estranged father’s impending death. Casey prioritizes the health and wellbeing of her recovering addict mother and fears the risk of pursuing her own path. They push one another.
You can feel this kinship between them; by the end of the movie it feels so strong like as if they are each other’s crutch. And when Jin finally pushes Casey to the point of her leaving to pursue a career in architecture, her emotional break is so intense. It’s one of those scenes where the character is feeling SO much so intensely that you just cannot help but be right there with her. This is why I see movies like this alone; I love being able to feel it all. And when she was sobbing so hard, scared to leave her mom, scared to fail, scared to be the small town girl she thinks she is… I felt 18 again. I felt 30 again. I felt it.
Anyways. The whole point is that this movie is one of those that really takes you into a curated vision. When I left the theatre, it was magic hour and I found myself feeling the wind against my skin and staring into the sky. Shit like that makes me know that a movie affected me; when it seeps out of the theater and stays with me. Please if you like movies like this, go see it IN THE THEATER. You can’t have the opportunity to watch it and lose focus or get distracted by your phone or whatever. You have to sit. You have to stare.