Sunday, November 05, 2017

My latest, and a brutally funny farce from Sweden

I'll be brief.

My latest piece in Jewish Week focuses on three of the films in this year's Other Israel Film Festival, and they're all quite good. You can read it here.

And you probably should see the new Ruben Ostlund film, The Square. Like his other films, this is a withering satirical attack on the weaknesses of a certain rarified kind of liberal good will and its detachment from the real world. Where his most recent previous film, Force Majeure, was a barbed look at the workings of the haute bourgeois family, The Square is a merciless send-up of postmodern art and the corporate interests that make its exhibition possible. Two-thirds of the way into the film it starts to fly apart like a Tinguely kinetic structure and, as is usual for Ostlund, the cringe quotient is high, ratched up to almost unbearable levels by his delight in testing how much an audience can stand (both within the diegesis and in the theater). The first two thirds are about as funny as anything I've seen this year, but the end result is undeniably disappointing.





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