At its packed Budapest world preem, as part of the 25th Hungarian Film Week, pic drew general nods for the startling quality of its vision and intensely cinematic style. Director Bela Tarr was still shooting only weeks before the unspooling, with the final print arriving wet from the labs. Adapted from a novel by Laszlo Krasznahorkai, film started out several years ago as a regular-length project but expanded as Tarr became obsessed with the content. Production, on a reportedly high budget in Hungarian terms, was spread over two years shooting days , with Tarr showing an uncompromising perfectionism.
Laszlo Krasznahorkai’s “Satantango” - Words Without Borders
Movie has a long-limbed, almost rondo construction, opening with a seven-minute take that introduces the rural setting and functions as a kind of overture. Setting for most of the action is an abandoned agricultural machinery plant in the vast Hungarian plain, where an assortment of deadbeats including three couples and an alcoholic doctor eke out a hopeless existence. Each is planning, or dreams of, some kind of escape, and the air is thick with betrayal and counter-betrayal.
With a comic Romanian acolyte in tow, Irimias sweeps into town in a sequence of Leone-ish bravura and promises a newlife to those willing to chance an exodus to other parts. Meanwhile, the liquor-soaked doctor, holed up in his Dickensian room before a rain-streaked window, laboriously catalogs the comings and goings of the characters in a collection of exercise books.
Budapest screening started late afternoon, with two intermissions. Some knowledge of Hungarian history is necessary to get the most out of the film, though its general theme — of a people riven by lack of self-confidence and internal feuding who are duped by a false messiah — is accessible enough. Animal lovers should steer clear of a graphic segment in which a village ragamuffin beats up on and then poisons her cat. International sales: Cinemagyar, Budapest. Directed by Bela Tarr. Screenplay, Laszlo Krasznahorkai, Tarr, based on Krasznahorkai's novel. Running time MIN.
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This seven-hour European epic takes place in an abandoned Hungarian farm machinery plant. There live a small band of hobos who will do anything they can to leave the place. A series of events occurs, but the story presents those events from each of the different character's viewpoints. Bela Tarr. Jul 22, Erzsebet Gaal as Mrs. Laszlo Lugossy Jr. Iren Szajki as Mrs.
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Mar 26, Full Review…. Oct 5, Full Review…. Feb 9, Full Review…. May 20, Full Review…. May 21, Full Review…. Jul 25, Full Review…. View All Critic Reviews Aug 08, Speaking of a little crazy, I've heard Jack Nicholson ask Batman if he's ever "danced with the Devil in the pale moonlight", but this Beelzebuboogie is ridiculous, and I really, really, really mean "ridiculous"! Yeah, references to Tim Burton's "Batman" might not be the best way to let people know that I'm credible enough to say that I know more about this art epic than the overrating critics, but really, people, calm down, because I feel like I understand what's going on.
Well, I don't know if I can say that this film forces you to do anything, because you don't have to suffer through it, yet that hasn't stop the snobby critics or, well, me, that one jerk who hated sitting through this Thank goodness I had the internet on the side. It's [b][u]"seven hours Musicality is unevenly used and sometimes misused, and visual style is about as often misused as it is attractive, so if nothing else is consistent at bringing some kind of life to this tiresome drama, it's the performances, because when I say that this film has no script, I literally mean that this film just had a script for the sake of having a script, so most of what material there is was improvised, and while there are times where the improvisation gets to be about as aimless as the "story"telling surrounding the performances One of the film's more entertaining moments is some guy dancing the tango and chanting on and on about how his mother is the sea, his father is the earth, and his life is the tango There are strengths in this film, it's just that they're so outweighed by the missteps, and for an impossibly unreasonable amount of time at that, yet you can spot them here and there, especially when they go backed by a rarity: an effective moment in the telling of what story there is.
That's right, people, the film is seven hours and a quarter of arrogant and abusive tedium on a level beyond comprehension, and the best thing that you can say about it is that it is sometimes depressing, but make no bones about it, the patient are bound to run into a few moments that give you a drop of what the pretentious critics could be talking about, limited though they may be.
Of course, on the whole, this film requires just too much blasted patience to only have a few enjoyable moments, and while there is enough realization to the film for it to not be an unpalatable torture, watching this film is a challenge that I can't even begin to recommend, because it doesn't even handle plotting all that well when it actually does take on something resembling a story. There is a whole lot more plodding than plotting in this mindlessly aimless snooezefest of over-experimentation, but if you want to say that there is something of a story structure, you should note that the film is divided into twelve segments Yes, twelve segments in a little under eight hours; Transatlantic's "The Whirlwind" is starting to sound a whole lot shorter that all connect in some fashion, but often just barely, with the most consistent aspect within each segment being padding so considerable that you have trouble remembering and getting invested in the segment you're watching at the moment, let alone the other segments, resulting in focal unevenness, a term I use pretty loosely, because there's any focus in this film.
There's a whole lot of rambling, but hardly any exposition, and a whole lot of wandering, but hardly any direction, so what you end up with is a sprawling character drama that pays only so much focus to its characters, which would be easier to forgive if there weren't so many extra-distancingly questionable character actions, most of which are forced in to supplement the artistic "story"telling. Whether they're whispering dialogue much too often or just standing around doing nothing much longer than your average Joe, the characters come off as not too much more than mere components to the artistic steadiness which drives this non-narrative, though you quickly forget this, certainly not because the characters are well-handled enough to be ever so slightly less than thoroughly unengaging, but because questionable characterization is overshadowed by a substantially more problematic component to the film's deliberate steadiness, a torturously bone-dry atmosphere, whose thoughtful attention to the environment proves to be occasionally immersive, but mostly dulls things down beyond belief, not sometimes, or often, or half of the time, or even three quarters of the time, but nearly throughout the entirety of this film whose running time is among the longest in cinematic history.
Limply paced and utterly quiet, if you're lucky Oh, the unbearable white noise of rain, wind and footsteps, so many footsteps , this film has been called by many to be consistently engrossing, and that statement is so beyond conceivability that it qualifies more as a blatant factual inaccuracy than a questionable opinion, because the film is always bland, to one degree or another, and is mostly boring, and I would be more willing to forgive that and conclude that the final product is, I don't know, mediocre or something, - like such other tedious, but reasonably tasteful art pieces as, say, "Wings of Desire", or "Days of Heaven", or whatever - were it not for there being an unthinkable amount of time to think about how boring this all is.
At about seven hours and a quarter, or minutes, or seconds, or milliseconds, or microseconds, or nanoseconds Between the opening credits and an introductory narration is a slowly wandering tracking shot of cows making their way across the farm around which this film's "story" is mostly centered that runs for, not one minute, or three minutes, or even the five minutes that I've once heard someone say they "felt" the sequence ran Cameron J Super Reviewer. Sep 09, Though the hyperbolic running time will certainly be a barrier for many viewers, those with patience to spare may find this a visually stunning, spellbinding and darkly wry film that reveals so much about human nature as it follows a group of static, miserable lives caught in the relentless grip of Tarr's hopelessness and nihilism.
Carlos M Super Reviewer. Nov 16, Gee totally forgot this Movie till saw a user has created a beautiful skin for this Movie Page. I cannt describe it, one have to watch themselves to experience the joy. Sorry sounds like an advertisement but its not. NaWie M Super Reviewer. Sep 16, I actually watched this over a week, watching an hour a day.
Some people have said this isn't the right way to watch it, but for me it was. I have trouble paying attention to long movies, especially ones like this, so I was actually paying attention to each hour, before getting to the point where I stop concentrating. It was boring. I LOVE long takes, but these were just pointless.
You Should Watch the Seven-Hour Hungarian Film 'Sátántangó' Right Now
The scene with the cat made me cringe, because animal cruelty makes me cry like a baby. Lauren D Super Reviewer. See all Audience reviews.