Monday, 19 January 2015

Fin / The End


Have any of you seen the Spanish film "Fin / The End"? Or read the book by David Monteagudo?

I saw it last night: naturalistic acting, lovely cinematography, nicely understated style, good music, and well directed. I didn't know what to expect when I chose this on a whim, and was pleased to find myself engrossed. I was therefore a bit dispirited to see some negative reviews for it.

Some of them seemed put off by the film being in Spanish. I don't understand the prejudice some people display about subtitles. You soon get used to them. And they open up a new world of film: great films you'd never see otherwise, and better in the original than any second-hand Hollywood remake. Also, you never wonder what is being said during action or mumbling - it's all there!

Maybe other people were confused about the type of film it would be, and expected an effects-laden apocalyptic film. Don't go in expecting that - it's a thoughtful and tense drama.

SPOILERS! I just wanted to talk about the ending, so don't read on if you haven't seen it. Some people seemed confused by it, and it is open to interpretation, so this is just my take on it. We see a big explosion at the start, maybe an ancient supernova in Sirius. It brings to mind the big bang theory - part of which is questions about what happened before the big bang. Many believe in a cycle of expansion and contraction, all matter eventually pulled back to collide and bounce back in a new big bang. So endings are also beginnings (one message of the film). At the end it is proposed that god has died; that the world-despoiling humans have no real purpose but as a beloved experiment of a god. With god's death we fade away, at the point when we realise we are alone and despair (pay attention to each disappearance). Note that non-humans in the film don't usually seem to be alone - flocks of birds, packs of dogs, goats, two vultures, lambs. However, the supernova is representative of the death of a god, but there are other stars, maybe a new god takes over, starts again. One man, one woman called Eve, in an unpopulated Eden. The EMP at the start serves one purpose as a red herring (has there been a nuclear bomb attack?), keeping you guessing about the type of film it is, but also serves to wipe out electronic technology, wipe the slate, create a simpler world in which to start again. Anyway, just some thoughts, I'm sure the original novel is well worth reading to find out more. Oh, if the supernova was a god dying it is interesting that we repeatedly see stopped clocks, beyond the point where it gives the viewer information - it may tie in to Auden's "Stop The Clocks" funereal poem (which also mentions phones not working, planes, oceans, and stars going out).
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