Wonderful Days (2003)

“Wonderful Days” (2003)

Fantasporto 2010



Those who are regular readers of my comments know that i have a special appreciation for the theme of cinematic uses of space. Usually, most of the times, i mean physical built spaces, architecture. I plan on developing the theme, and in a near future hopeful get sponsoring to deepen my research and eventually get somewhere. In the meanwhile, i collect examples of films which clearly address the theme.

The thing i’ve been noticing is that unlike other qualities you may find in a film, this space/image adequation is something that simply won’t happen unless the filmmakers are conscious of it. In other words, in order for buildings to become either characters or spacial entities, there has to be a lot of thinking and awareness involved. Being an architecture might help, it certainly did help Meirelles in Blindness.

Here we have a fairly interesting example of the theme. The story is absolutely uninteresting, dull and discardable except for what allows the architecture connection to show: everything revolves around one building, the ECOBAN, where the bad guys have their fortress from where they control the surrounding world of the film. the sequence during the credits is powerful in how it synthesizes this concept: the hero rides his motorcycle through the road, and enters this building. It’s interesting to understand this building: it has a central plant, we actually even see a virtual model of it, inserted in the film!, when the bad guys discuss the security of ECOBAN. from that central round core (with an interior that uses Wright’s New York museum) we have several huge accesses, several long corridors that connect the core to the world. Those corridors great structures that mix Gothic bows with more bionic freely designed structures, one inside the other. It’s one of this corridors that we see the hero ride through, in the initial sequence. So that first essential scene has him reaching the inside of the building. That’s the most spatial sequence of the whole film, and it makes the experience worthy, even though the rest of the shots are usually uneven (with a few exceptions). It’s useless to say the the final solution to release the world from tyranny is found at the centre of the building.

So, we have a story folded into a building, making the building a character itself. that building works in its conception as the metaphor (symbol) of what it represents in the story. So it’s Storytelling mapped into architecture. That’s really interesting. Everything else in this film fades compared to this concept. More than that the story is strangely inefficient. I don’t know how we can have the cleverness of making architecture a character to support such an unclear narrative. It’s like there were different people working on different aspects of the project.

The production, and visual aspect is quite good, as in fact pretty much anything that comes out of South Korea.

My opinion: 3/5

This comment on IMDb


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