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Berlin Film Review: ‘In the Intense Now’

21 February 2017 12:22 PM, PST | Variety - Film News | See recent Variety - Film News news »

Almost every contemporary movie, from Hollywood superhero blockbusters to the most arduous Romanian art film, is shot in some variation of “widescreen.” So it was a shock to sit down in the Kino International, the exotically stodgy yet palatial Cold War movie palace built in East Berlin in 1963, to encounter a film projected in the ancient shape of a square. (The shape matched the theater: so out of time it seemed new again.) It’s clear why the Brazilian director João Moreira Salles chose that aspect ratio. His movie, “In the Intense Now” — one of the rare glories of this year’s Berlin International Film Festival — consists entirely of home movies and TV and documentary newsreel clips shot during the mid-to-late ’60s, and since the vast majority of the footage is shaped like that, why not stay true to it?

“In the Intense Now” is reminiscent of the films of Chris Marker, »

- Owen Gleiberman

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