Blue Eyelids (Párpados azules, Mexico, 2007)

Trying to connect

Trying to connect

It’s good to see films about the marginalised in cinema. In this case the characters are, I suspect, hardly at the margins in society though they are in cinema: the lonely. If lonely people are to be portrayed then we should be able to sympathise with them, however the protagonists of this film are so vacuous that it’s no wonder they have no close relationships. So empty, in fact, that they take their cue from a film, the titular Blue Eyelids, on what to say and what music to listen to. They don’t even talk about the weather and there is a lot of rain.

Then there’s the old woman, a sort of fairy godmother, who dispatches birds to keep the lovebirds together. If that sounds magical you would be mistaken as it comes across as absurd. I may be missing something: is it an anti-romance, creating expectations before emptying them out of the film? Certainly the scene with Marina’s sister appeared to come from a telenuevola, and the meeting of the protagonists is as inevitable as a film ending (this one didn’t end quickly enough), but there was no satisfaction when the characters did get together: was that the point? It included a brilliant ‘excruciatingly bad sex’ scene but that was the ‘high’ point.

Maybe the mangled genre conventions and clunking narrative would not have mattered if it’d been directed with any competence. During Marina’s and Victor’s first meal together, in a restaurant, the camera dollies back as if leaving them; then dollies back for the non-conversation, that the characters habitually have, to continue. At a bar, the dancing is shown by two right-to-left pans and a right-to-left tracking shot, interspersed by ‘mangled’ montage (by that I mean the shots appeared random in seeming to isolate people, who would be significant later in the scene, but who in fact weren’t). A scene in a park is interspersed by ‘establishing’ shots outside the park; extreme close ups, with shallow depth of fields, were the norm but I don’t know why.

This was bad narratively and stylistically or was I missing something? Comments below.

PS Roy Stafford found more to like than me.

One Response

  1. Haha am I actually the first reply to your incredible article?!?

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