One of the most highly acclaimed films of the year, 'Leviathan' is a thrilling, immersive documentary that takes you deep inside the dangerous world of commercial fishing. Filmed off the coast of New Bedford, Massachusetts - at one time the whaling capital of the world as well as Melville's inspiration for 'Moby Dick'- it is today the country's largest fishing port with over 500 ships sailing from its harbor every month. Leviathan follows one such vessel, a hulking groundfish trawler, into the surrounding murky black waters on a six weeks-long fishing expedition. But instead of romanticizing the labor or partaking in the longstanding tradition of turning fisherfolk into images, filmmakers Lucien Castiang-Taylor and Verena Paravel present a vivid, almost-kaleidoscopic representation of the work, the sea, the machinery and the players, both human and marine. Employing an arsenal of cameras that passed freely from film crew to ship crew; that swoop from below sea level to astonishing bird's-eye views, the film that emerges is unlike anything that has been seen before. Entirely dialogue-free, but mesmerizing and gripping throughout, it is a cosmic portrait of one of mankind's oldest endeavours.
Brian Jannelle, Adrian Guillette, Arthur Smith, Asterias Vulgaris, Callinectes Sapidus, Christopher Swampstead, Cleona Celata, Clyde Lee, Declan Conneely, Fulmarus Glarialis, F.V. Athena, Gadus Morhud, Hippoglossus Hippoglossus, Homarus Americanus, Johnny Gatcombe, Larus Argentatus Smithsonianus, Larus Marinus, Luna, Mare, Melanogrammus Aeglef'inus
If you want to watch the out-takes of a go pro left lying on a fishing boat in the dark for 1h30, then this is for you. Otherwise, you will be hugely disappointed. I simply cannot understand how this could be "one of the most critically acclaimed" films of 2012 as there is literally, and I mean literally nothing to see. After the first 15-20 minutes, I thought the opening scene would end and they would show something more interesting than chains being untangled in dim light, but no. At times the camera is left on a deck, showing fish heads sliding to and fro, sometimes it is dragged just under the surface of the sea, still in near darkness, occasionally we see a guy watching TV. These are the highlights, as the viewer won't understand what it is they are seeing in most of the other shots. All the shots are extremely long and although at first I expected to see something, after 30 minutes, I realised it just wouldn't happen. I stuck with it right to the end just in case but in vain.
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