Fay Grim

Fay Grim

Hal Hartley's Rivette film, where the central mystery is intentionally unsolvable, each character slowly consumed by the need to know and understand something which is ultimately intangible. Hartley uses this intangibility as a platform for satire, quietly scathing in his indictment of the flimsy, two-faced nature of global politics, wringing humour out of the incomprehensible barrage of allegiences, betrayals and justifications (also found this to be refreshingly apolitical). Every single shot here is canted in some way, this borderline experimental approach resulting in not only a multitude of unexpectedly beautiful compositions, but a self-reflexive acknowledgement of the farcical nature of the film's narrative (and by extension, global relations). The camera here is in on the joke, purposefully placing its characters in a world that is made up of only one word in the entire cinematic language; disorientation. Also helps that I found this to be relatively hilarious, Goldblum a perfect match for Hartley's off-beat sense of tone, the script itself jokier than I've come to expect from the director (a positive). Kind of shocked this was so widely shrugged off upon release.

Luke liked these reviews