Saturday, 6 July 2013
Possession (1981) Second Sight Blu-Ray review.
Second Sight have done it again with Possession, which finally gets a Blu-Ray release on the 29th of July 2013. The disc features an absolutely beautiful transfer of Andrzej Zulawski's horror/art feature, as well as being crammed with an amazing array of special features such as a commentaries, interviews and documentaries. If you have never seen this movie, then this release (the movies first time on Blu Ray) is the perfect time to pick it up and loose yourself in one of the darkest and most nihilistic movies I have ever seen.
Possession, upon it's release in 1981, became a victim of the video recordings act, and was banned in the UK for over a decade. Strangely, the movie bares little resemblance to other movies labelled with the video nasty tag, favoring a more psychologically disturbing and emotionally raw story with shocking scenes of violence, which is certainly different than your average horror movie. The movie was even nominated for a BAFTA and the Palme d'Or.
To give much of the plot away would do the movie a great disservice, so I am only going to give a very brief outline on what the movie is about. The movie revolves around a married couple and the breakdown of their relationship. Anna (played with such commitment by Isabelle Adjani) and Mark (Sam Neill) argue and fight argue over anything and everything, including their child. Everything seems rather normal at first (or as normal as can be for the breakdown of a relationship) but the movie descends into madness and surreality, coupled with a brutal honesty.
The way the couple interact is truly breathtaking. The way they explode at each other is truly venomous and emotionally affecting. It really takes it out of the viewer, the couples constant gnashing of teeth, shouting, trying to outdo one another suffocates the viewer to the point of making them severely uncomfortable, like they are looking in on real life. It really is the most gut wrenching portrait of the end of a relationship ever committed to film.
The special features on the Second Sight Blu Ray are truly something to behold. You get two commentaries, one with director Andrzej Zulawski, and another with co-writer Frederic Tuten, both of which are informative and entertaining. There is a making of documentary entitled The Other Side of the Wall, which is an incredibly informative and interesting documentary, a featurette on the artist who created the film poster for Possession, an interview with the director and much more.
Possession shares a lot thematically with movies like The Brood and Antichrist. It is a no holds barred, unforgiving film of emotional breakdown, rage and a bleak hopelessness. This is a true piece of cinema, and moves beyond any generalization or categorization anyone can give it. It is a bravura piece of cinema, and one that cuts right to the bone both with its realism and with its honest portrayal of the disintegration of love and spirituality in all of its misery and brutality.
Possession really is a film like no other. It deserves to be seen by every fan of cinema out there without fail, as it is an emotionally raw and sickening journey into the heart of human despair and base instincts.
Check out the Second Sight website by clicking HERE. There is more information about all of their releases on there, so it is definitely worth giving it a look.