Brilliant thoughts about a brilliant film.
Songs from the Second Floor is one of the most extraordinary films that I have ever seen. Released in 2000, it represents the Swedish director Roy Andersson’s surreal and disturbing meditation on the emptiness, absurdity and alienation he sees permeating western society at the turn of the millenium.
How to describe this film? Monty Python meets Ingmar Bergman? Jacques Tati meets Luis Bunuel? Perhaps the easiest way to begin to explain this film is to say that it consists of 46 shots in which, with total precision, Andersson positions his actors as if in a tableau, their movements limited and always remaining within the frame. With a perfect sense of tragi-comic timing, Andersson presents a series of vignettes that each have the concentrated brevity of an advert, with all the associated visual imagination and surprise that is characteristic of a form in which you must grab and hold the viewer’s…
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