Seaside takes place in a small coastal town on the Bay of Somme. The year-round inhabitants find ways to make their lives work; Paul, a lifeguard in the summer, works at the grocery all ...
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Seaside takes place in a small coastal town on the Bay of Somme. The year-round inhabitants find ways to make their lives work; Paul, a lifeguard in the summer, works at the grocery all winter. His mother, Rose (Ogier) likes to play the slots just about anytime; his girlfriend Marie works in the local factory - the town's biggest business - but watching the summertime vacationers each year just makes her increasingly curious about what else might be out there. From these and several other stories, aided by close, revealing observations, we see a community perched between transition and stasis. Written by
a boring movie about boring people in a boring town
Films about the mundane are often the most interesting of all films to me, in the hands of an insightful artist who examines all the twisted little details of the mundane. The French cinema seems to often be very good at this sort of thing, and I love the French cinema.
This film was about the mundane. It didn't have a much of a plot. It was just characters who lived in a town, very normal people, and stuff just happened. But it wasn't very interesting stuff, and it wasn't examined very insightfully. The film did capture a bit of a mood, but it wasn't a particularly captivating mood. And while I can't think of much that the film did specifically wrong, it failed on just about every level to do anything right.
There were a lot of characters in this film. A lot of them kind of looked alike, so it was hard to figure out who was who, and what were their relations to one another. I don't mind putting some effort into understanding a film, or even watching an especially complex film more than one time to iron out the details, but this one was a puzzle not worth the solving for me.
The only good thing I can really say about this film is that the cinematography was pleasant--functional, not brilliant, but pleasant. The camera often captured some nice postcard-type shots. But it rarely found the really interesting little details.
I've seen a handful of not-so-good films so far at the Seattle International Film Festival, but this was the only one that failed to get any applause when the credits rolled. I sensed a big collective sigh of relief when the film was finally over. But I suppose there are probably some people out there who would like it.
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