Theatrical Review: YOU, THE LIVING

Chase Whale

by: Chase Whale
November 23rd, 2007

Rating: 8.5/10

Director, Writer: Roy Andersson
Cast: Jessika Lundberg, Elisabet Helander, Bjorn Englund
Studio: 9.5/10

I've been sitting here for the last twenty minutes trying to think of clever ways to write about and explain YOU, THE LIVING, but I just can't. This is one of those movies that's that good, that I'm coming up blank with how to start off. The next few paragraphs are collected thoughts on how I feel about this film.

Roy Andersson successfully broke every mainstream rule and carefully lead his cast into a well-crafted film. YOU, THE LIVING doesn't need much explaining. None of that, "you have to think outside the box" bullshit. There is no central plot, everything is completely random, and without main characters. It's just a series of vignettes that focus on people's everyday lives. Some are tragic, some are hilarious and some are quite depressing. The pasty dry colors influence the audiences' reaction to each actor's bad luck. Everyone can relate to this because everyone dreams big and everyone lives these types of lives.

My favorite thing about this movie is the camera work. It's nothing spectacular, but the camera is stationary so the only movement we get are the actors. That's also saying something about the acting as well. There needs to be some pretty damn good acting to keep the viewers attention - YOU, THE LIVING has achieves this without flaw. Each scene seemed right out of a play, perfectly rehearsed. With some longer than others, the only cuts are the ones that introduce a new one. One can appreciate the time and effort the director and actors put into this.

YOU, THE LIVING is an experience. I'm not too sure which genre this fits in. It isn't a comedy. It isn't a drama. It is comedic. It is dramatic. It is something you need to see.

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