I think “floating” is the main concept throughout the documentary. It is the first thing that came out on the screen, eyes with or without a direction of a man’s, floating in a boat crossing the water. Never seen him again, like the people who left this region, thinking that staying here will become rotten as this deserted place, and that blackouts and murders are just unpredictable. Life is impermanent. The late night when a man is directing the boat and telling stories of another man of madness – is the most impressing floating scene to me. The playing/changing of lights are doing really great works here. Sometimes there is an overall dim light around the whole area, but sometimes there is only a streetlight shining dazzling from the man’s back. Sometimes you see the man’s face, and sometimes you don’t. This tactic adds to the mysterious and darkness of the stories. It is hard to identify with the stories being told, since they are all so “abnormal” in other places though normal to the locals, but the angles of scenes are so closed-up that you instead identify with the film producer who was doing the work of shooting, as if we were there, right on the boat, recording every piece and movement of the man’s mouth and spoken words.
I wouldn’t say that the directions of shooting on the boat did a “great” job as well since there were times I wasn’t really sure what the angles were trying to tell, like when the screen just show random scenery for a long period of time (someone answered in class that this may show the slow pace of the place). But it did a “good” job, to be fair, in giving the audience many different aspects to see: from the angle of the bow of the boat facing at the boatmen, from the bow facing forward, from inside the boat facing the boatmen pulling the ship on shore…there are already numerous angles solely sitting on the bow. The opening scene was confusing, though, where the focus on the man was suddenly blurred out. Meanwhile I found the angle toward animals watching straightly in the screen was very spirited and soulful. All of these above were shown during “floating,” during when you feel like the people, and you, are being watched by the animals, the violent soldiers, the empty houses, the wandered souls, and the God.
At the very end of the documentary the audience are told about the new murder. Wow. That means we were also floating through time and space when watching the film in a classroom in 2017.
I wonder where the man in the first scene went, the one on a boat, floating…
“We’re floating in the universe.”
“If I keep telling then it is going to be morning.”