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A hipster vampire girl on a skateboard rides through the night, her Chador billowing out like Batman's cape, backed by music from a Spaghetti Western. Ever since seeing the trailer, You have no idea how long I have been waiting to watch A Girl Walks Home Alone At Night. It was practically unreleased in UK cinemas, and had a significantly staggered DVD release too, meaning I've only just had a chance to catch it just now. Was it worth the wait?
Somewhat. A Girl is one of the most gorgeous looking films I have seen in a long time. Not since Under the Skin have I seen such impressive cinematography. You could take any frame of this film and mount it on the wall of a trendy wine bar. This is best encapsulated by "The Girl" herself, who is as photogenic as she is haunting and agonizingly cool. Outside of the occasional overly pretentious scene (there is an interlude in which someone tangos with a black balloon for no apparent reason), I can't fault the way this movie looks. I could recommend this film on the visuals alone, and sadly, that is probably what I am going to do anyway.
You see, there just isn't that much else to it I'm afraid. There's some imaginative exchanges between characters to go on, the mystery that is The Girl, and a muted feminist subtext, but by and large there is very little substance to keep the film from dragging. Arty movies such as these tend to have a slow pace as it is, but the lack of any real story beyond "boy meets girl, girl is a blood thirsty, hipster vampire" means there is a general lack of depth to the picture. Really, this could have done a lot better as a twenty minute short.
I am disappointed with the picture, but I only have myself to blame for getting my hopes too high. For everyone else who has never heard of it, I would still recommend A Girl Walks Home Alone At Night. It is slow, but it is something you are meant to savour.
Just as a quick counterpoint for potential viewers -
I LOVED this movie as soon as I saw it, and as I tend to with most movies I enjoy, I gorged myself on reviews to see what other people thought. The biggest trend I've noticed (both w/ critics and random commenters) is that there's a big divide between people who either thought the film had intentionally slow, excellent pacing, and people who thinks it drags like hell.
Personally, I find the pacing almost... sensual? I don't really even know how to describe it. It goes very slowly, little happens, and it's often very quiet. But if you're really engrossed in what's happening despite that, it's great.
So... don't go into this expecting a huge amount of action. Go into it expecting a sort of artsy, romantic vampire flick. And hey, even if you hate it, it's on Netflix, so you might as well!
That all said - to you, the reviewer - I can see thinking it drags on, definitely, as you're right, pretty little happens in this movie. I think your last line hit the nail on the head with this one.
I remember once seeing A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night on Netflix about a few years ago. In all blunt honesty, boring and pretentious is really the only way to describe this terrible film. Sure it had some style, but it had zero substance whatsoever. Apparently, having black-and-white visuals and being in a foreign language was enough to make a lot of professional film critics gush over this movie, while completely ignoring its total lack of any real plot or interesting characters.
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