Om det oändliga [About Endlessness] (2019)

Om det oändliga
Director: Roy Andersson
Writer: Roy Andersson
Cast: Bengt Bergius, Anja Broms, Tatiana Delaunay, Jan-Eje Ferling, Thore Flygel, Lotta Forsberg, Göran Holm, Stefan Karlsson, Martin Serner
Seen on: 16.9.2020

A sequence of moments, some trivial, some monumental, accompanied by ironic and earnest ruminations about the vulnerability and humanity of life itself.

About Endlessness is a strange film and one that isn’t easily summarized (as you may have guessed from my “plot description”). It’s probably not a film for a casual viewer and how much you will get out of it will probably vary widely – I’m not sure about it myself. But it is definitely an interesting film and with its short runtime, it is pretty much perfect to just give it a try and see what it does for you.

The film poster showing a man and a woman hugging tight as they fly over the city.

About Endlessness is a film that is as colorless as it can be without actually being shot in black and white. Beige, grey, light brown dominate here, both the sets and the people who are all pale and mostly fat and older. With that visual language alone, the film manages to create a very strange atmosphere. One would think that it gets boring to look at with its washed-out aesthetics, but somehow the opposite is true (though I don’t know if I would have wanted the film to go on longer than it did).

The scenes that are played out are filled with humor that is both very prominent, but also very soft in its absurdity and a little bit of irony (without getting too detached). It’s not a comedy where somebody makes jokes, but where you realize how absurdly funny life is. That means, that it’s not made for really laughing out loud, I think, and there is always a note of bittersweetness to it. At times, the humor gets totally left behind, too.

a rather full café. it's snowing outside.

About Endlessness is a slow film. It’s a labored film, that somehow manages to retain a sense of lightness. But above all it’s an unusual film that is very much its own animal. I haven’t seen another Andersson movie, but from the posters I gather that it shares some traits with others of his films. I am certainly curious now to check them out.

A man standing in the kitchen looking straight at the camera, a woman sitting at the table behind him.

Summarizing: strange.

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