Guest Author - Rain Battle
It seemed like an interesting idea: choose three talented directors to interpret one theme. In Eros, an erotic collaboration, three directors direct three short films. There is "The Hand" directed by Kar Wai Wong, a Chinese filmmaker who is quite well known for his refusal to use formal scripts on his sets. Then there is "Equilibrum" directed by Steven Soderbergh ("Ocean's Twelve", "Erin Brockovich"), who's new movie "The Jacket" was released just a few months ago. Finally there is "Il filo pericoloso delle cose" ("The Dangerous Thread of Things") directed by Michaelangelo Antonioni, a 92 year old who made his first feature film in 1950.
In "The Hand," a young tailor's apprentice overhears a romantic interlude involving his master's most important client. Aware that he has overheard her and enjoyed what he heard, the woman tells him to never forget his feelings at that moment and he will be able to create beautiful clothes for her. He is in love with her from that moment on, but can only watch and dream as she courts everyone but him. This story initially appears to be a typical one about unrequited love. As the film continues, we see it is about more - a woman who could have true love rejects it and instead seeks shallow adoration until she eventually destroys herself.
"Equilibrium" stars Robert Downey Jr. as an anxious man having a recurring dream about a woman he doesn't know. His intense dream disturbs him and offends his wife, so he visits a psychiatrist (Alan Arkin) to tell him the meaning of his dream. The doctor has his new patient recall his dream in detail, but the doctor isn't really listening. Instead he is making romantic plans of his own.
Finally, in "The Dangerous Thread of Things," we meet a couple on the verge of divorce. Despite being on vacation, they seem miserable and oblivious to their beautiful surroundings. Eventually, they have an argument that separates them, and while apart, he has an affair with a beautiful young girl. Later, the couple talk about their relationship and leave the possibility of a reconcilliation open. However, the wife is soon to meet someone who may change her mind...
It seemed like an interesting idea... but it was severely disappointing. Perhaps the hype over the film was too intense. There was a lot of pressure for these three internationally renowned directors to deliver masterpieces, but these shorts are good at best. Although it wasn't a contest, "The Hand" was clearly the best of the bunch. "Equilibrium" was somewhat predictable and a bit silly, and "The Dangerous Thread of Things" seemed to rely on nudity as its main source of eroticism. "The Hand" boasts both a good story, solid acting, and an original plot. Overall, perhaps it would be best to wait for another new release with this film - to DVD.
Extra Extra! Tidbits About the Movie...
*In Reality - In Greek mythology, Eros was Aphrodite's son and the god of Love.
*Tidbit - This film has a limited release and is currently only being shown in certain parts of the country.