We are the Night (2012) Review
Exposing the reality of immortality, once one can be given no limitations all sense of restraint, moral judgment and basic lessons we learn in good education and faith decay leaving only a shell of the former person, only to produce a monster. Perfectly captured in the opening scene, where a myriad of passengers are strewn throughout the cabin drained of their blood. Meanwhile Nora sanguine holds several designer label bags, Louise having enjoyed a bottle of champagne and Charlotte obliviously reading, typically no different from a quiet evening at the dinner table for them. But furthermore the contentment among cadavers clearly falls under an atypical night.
In spite of their steely nature all these women retained qualities which carried remnants of their humanity which appealed to my emotions and attachments. Truthfully their pact was dysfunctional because their lifestyle was based in indulgence as opposed to logic; demonstrated by other depictions of vampiric societies whom employ specific rules meant to protect themselves from exposure in society while allowing them to exist within it. Louise, Nora and Charlotte were internally damaged as people and in linear probability foreshadowed an imminent collision leading toward demise. One haunted by the ripples of her former life, another still too young to truly embrace her condition still clinging to the physical world and of course Louise who has spent 280 years searching for someone who loves her; collectively spelling disaster for our novice Lena being least accustomed or emotionally mature.
Perhaps my favorite aside from Charlotte was Nora, yet another heartbreaking part of Wir sind die Nacht. Faithfully exuberant in what lavishness and spoils perpetual longevity entails, Nora frankly succumbs to victimization by circumstance and predicament. Consistently exuding a child-like quality she loves the “night life” which Louise immerses her girls in, but simultaneously acts lost. Her view of humanity teeters between unconcerned to surprisingly tender, making her death evermore woeful. Set from the beginning Lena and Tom are scripted romantic involvement. By the climax their chemistry does not surpass any mundane romantic comedy duos, but admit to their initial meeting being humorous and refreshing. On a tangent musical tracks throughout were well incorporated, complimenting and in fact setting moods in certain cases (i.e. nightlife exuberance, Lena escaping arrest, setting fire to a whore house & SWAT storming the hotel). Reflecting upon my experience as a viewer I prefer drawing back to when Lena was first exposed, many casual observers may not have noticed by “we are the night” has strong elements as a classic tragedy underneath all the glitz and glamor. By the falling action everyone besides Lena and Tom are dead and audiences are left with an open ending to write the rest for themselves.
Camera angles had an experimental quality, but retained wonderful effects on perspective. Dialogues between characters did not come across as scripted, but natural & unique to each personality. Unfortunately most flat of all performances was Toms, who seemed to be onto something earlier, but lost it in becoming more 2-dimensional than Pac-man. In addition his response toward Lena showing her condition seemed flat line at face value; if he was trying to communicate a state of shock it came much closer to ambivalent apathy or boredom, showing no investment in the scene.
Opposite of this hit and miss was Miss Charlotte who enthralled us with her stoic melancholia. Guided by specific moments in the story she does not seem to have wanted her undead gift, pinning in nostalgia until finally finding closure in a final sunrise. Strangely enough considering the level of care put into her personal background secretly made this movie focus on her journey instead of Lena. Most childe are recruited into covens as shown, ultimately making Lena a carbon copy among thousands. Esoterically dedicated fans of this particular interpretation may agree or disagree, but intrusively I stand by my statement. Being a cinematic zealot I can appreciate foreign films, especially since more so they are far better in development, character depth, plot and artistic creativity than most American productions. Since some film creators operate on a limited budget and or resources, they are forced to stretch their means. This recipe has always produced incredible results. Adjoined editing, restructuring events and re-shooting will have been welcomed since I believe these alterations are needed. For lack of succinct phrasing a certain level of concentration becomes lost. A reoccurring motif of a twisted love triangle is revisited numerous times between Louise, Lena and Tom, but fails to be convincing or a driving force. My recommendation, be your own judicator since it has an acquired taste.
Directing 6/10 Storyline 6.5/10 Dialogue 8/10 Cinematography 7/10 Soundtrack 9/10
Honorable mention of Amy Fischer, Jan Berger and Jennifer Ulrich for delighting and riveting me so early in the morning.
[i]. http://www.justpressplay.net. Web. 17 Sept 2012.
[ii]. http://bloodyselena.files.wordpress.com. Web. 17 Sept 2012.
[iii]. http://www.cinemaxx.de. Web. 17 Sept 2012.
[iv]. http://www.dvdtalk.ru. Web. 17 Sept 2012.