I’m not entirely sure where to start when talking about this film. At the cinema I was glued to the screen in a constant state of stunned and amazed. From beginning to end this film was a work of art better than anything Gerda or Einar/Lili create within it.
The cinematography of this film is some of the most beautiful I have seen on screen. The thing I truly loved were the scenes where they was no in screen sound but rather just the soundtrack, ditching the viewer to truly focus on the visuals. The soundtrack mixed with spot on acting gave us the emotions and an understanding of the characters feelings without the need for their words.
Being a film focused on two artist, it was somewhat necessary for it to be beautiful to watch I think, but it is so impressively done. The art of their canvas, mixed with the game that Lili starts as, mixed with Europe all around them is constantly a feast for the eyes. Landscape shots show us the variety of character that Europe holds, that you don’t need to look hard to find. Similarly the portrait/profile shots bring us into the characters, especially of Einar/Lili, they force us to consider everything we think we know about gender.
However it goes further than that. With Lili we are forced not only to think about what gender means but also about sexuality, about love, about art. There is a heart wrenching scene wherein Lili gets beaten up for having a make body but dressing as a female and that scene hit me as being so important. Lili is in a bubble almost where the people she’s closest too are accepting, she has been out a few times as Lili and nothing has happened. Then suddenly this sharp change comes in and both her and the viewers are reminded that not everyone if accepting. It reminds me of times when I gave tried to have discussions about gender, sexuality or politics with people outside of my family and friends groups and I’m reminded that people can be bigoted and close minded. We’re aware of it but it’s so easy to think of as being “out there”when your constantly around like minded people.
I could talk about the beauty of this film all day but I feel I would just be finding new days to day it’s beautiful so I will stop now. But please if you get the chance, go and see this film.