Wednesday, 25 November 2009

TIFF Dispatch: Apan (The Ape)

I'm not going to write a lot about Apan, the Swedish film I saw at TIFF waaay back in August. This is because:
  • It was about the 8th movie I had seen that day and they were all starting to blur.
  • It was showing at around 5:30 PM (nap time)
  • I had downed two pints in rapid succession moments before going into the theatre.
For a while this was the only trailer I could find.

Then, after some more searching, I found this one:

I will admit that I had every intention of staying awake during Apan. I've liked some of the newer films coming out of Sweden, and not only because they're in color. Its premise was interesting - a man wakes up fully clothed in his bathroom after something has gone most definitely wrong in a most violent way. We're not given any explanation as to his identity or his motivations. We're not really sure what city he's in. I don't even think we get to know his name. Over the next 90 or so minutes a shaky handheld camera struggles to keep pace as he races around town trying to deal with the aftermath and carry out a normal day. He shouts into his cel phone. He argues with his mother. He awkwardly flirts with young boys in the gym sauna. He buys power tools. He clearly has a temper, a fact no doubt related to the mess back home.

This is not a pretty film. The digital video is drab. Our protagonist is drab. The city where he lives is drab. I have a feeling all of this was done on purpose. What that purpose is, however, I have yet to completely understand.

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