Surrounded by endless forest, close by a river, a small community exists where everyone seems to lead idyllic lives. After a few years away, Johanna returns to the village, and becomes ... See full summary »
Surrounded by endless forest, close by a river, a small community exists where everyone seems to lead idyllic lives. After a few years away, Johanna returns to the village, and becomes aware that things have changed. William, a writer, has inherited his grandfather's house. Gradually, he starts to get the feeling that the circumstances surrounding Vladimir's death are more complicated than they initially appear. Written by
Being a completely broke film buff with a house to furnish, I'm a big fan of IKEA. My whole domicile, practically, is packed to the brim with the cheap particle-board stuff. And you know how all those stylish household items at IKEA have those funny names--a bookshelf called "Holika" and a bathroom mirror called a "Grundtal"--well, it just adds to the whole Euro-charm.
Like those interestingly-named (but horribly translated) items on the shelves at IKEA, I'd like to provide a bit of translation to some of the reviews I've read about the Swedish-made "Kraftverk 3714."
Original Comment: "For a low budget film, this is pretty cool stuff. It would be great to see what these guys could do on a Hollywood budget!"
Translation: The film stock is crappy, the lighting is pedestrian, the cinematography is uninteresting, the sound recording is hollow.
Original Comment: "David Lynchesque sci-fi drama set in a strange forest town with equally strange characters!"
Translation: These "actors" are acting for free, the storyline is circular and tiring, the ideas that undergird the flick desperately try to be existential but are simply mundane, and the settings (especially the interiors) are dull and filled with ugly wallpaper.
Original Comment: "The editing is well-done, and the conservative use of computer graphics shows that compelling CGI effects don't have to come out of a Hollywood studio!"
Translation: When you've got sketchy cinematography to begin with, hide the imperfections by digitizing all of it onto a Mac and blending vigorously for three minutes. Ingenious!
I took a chance on this DVD because I'm a sucker for independent films, especially those that attempt to tackle the often-expensive and awe-inspiring genre of science fiction. I mean, some of the best sci-fi flicks of all time have been realized with little or no budget, spfx, and specious actors. Take Peter Fonda's eco-warning-time-travel flick "Idaho Transfer" for example! A classic.
But "Kraftverk 3714" doesn't fit the category of "carefully-crafted, low-key, idea-dependent sci-fi." It relentlessly focuses on characters that don't do much and don't say interesting things. It goes round and round in circles. It is much too long (this coming from a major Tarkovsky fan). Worse, its concept of "reality shifting aliens" is Twilight Zone fodder from 40 years ago. It's just not a well-made film -and I really wanted it to be, dammit!
However, being the IKEA fan I am, I did make one ground-shattering observation. First, anyone who has shopped at IKEA knows how their tricky shopping carts work--all four wheels being multidirectional. The carts can spin a perfect 360 degrees, and it takes some familiarity to handle them like a pro, as any avid IKEA shopper knows. Well, I'll be damned, but one of the lead actresses in "Kraftverk 3714" goes to some inky-dinky grocery store in the middle of nowhere and what is she pushing around? A multidirectional shopping cart! So, that's not an IKEA invention after all, but is yet another wonderful invention (let's call it a "Tacklebee" for the hell of it) from the land of hei-doo!
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