Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Mr. Nobody

Recently I sat down and watched the 2009 film, "Mr. Nobody".  It premiered at the Venice Film Festival back in 2009.  The film is about Nemo Nobody, who is the last truly mortal man left on planet Earth, at age 118.  The rest of our race has acheived semi-immortality, being able to live significantly longer than naturally possible.  Nemo is about to die, but is joined by a journalist who has been tasked with documenting Nemo's life, as the last true mortal.  He describes his parent's divorce, three possible love interests, and other trying moments in his life.  Theses aspects are told at ages nine, fifteen and thirty-four.  What makes this story different is that Nemo doesn't stick to one story.  These alternate timelines are switched around incredibly quickly, as Nemo makes split second decisions.  This makes the film very non-linear as we bounce between nine possible realities.

This film also takes a look at different science fiction concepts.  Often times this non-linear format even gives way to the butterfly effect.  We see Nemo affected three times, in multiple realities based on the butterfly effect.  We see a drop of water, leaf in the road and a bird in the road change Nemo's life drastically.  In addition to the butterfly effect, we also see a lot of talk of "The Big Crunch".  The Big Crunch can most readily be described as the opposite of the big bang.  At the end of the universe, everything will contract rapidly.  We see this science play a significant role because Nemo is a science television host in one universe.  

Overall this film features incredibly beautiful shots (and not just because our lead actor, Jared Leto, has gorgeous eyes).  We see many close ups, that help add to the sense of disorientation and fast pace, as we never are given much time to establish a scene.  The attention to detail is immense when it comes to the cinematography.  We also see countless beautiful time lapse shots that create an incredibly surrealist feel.  All of this is complimented by some very intense production design.  Very often, Nemo's worlds are surrealist but uniform.  

This includes a world where everyone wears plaid and drives red cars.  This pattern required a lot of work by the entire production design team.  Overall this film is a beautiful surreal piece, all tied together by the realization from Nemo that, "Each of these lives is the right one! Every path is the right path. Everything could have been anything else and it would have just as much meaning." 

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