In most cases, prior context shouldn’t be necessary to viewing a film, but with Music, we’d highly recommend it: Angela Schanelec’s work falls under a particularly niche type of art film, and having some understanding of this can be useful. Told through long and contemplative shots with deep colour and a methodically considered mise-en-scene, Schanelec relays the story of Oedipus Rex as a contemporary and emotional update told between the 1980s to present day.
For those willing to exercise patience and contemplation
The story starts with a baby being rescued from the mountains. Years later, the same baby, Jon, ends up in prison due to an unfortunate, deadly encounter. Here, he falls for prison guard Iro; they marry and have a baby. From the clifftops of Greece to Potsdamer Platz, misfortune and history repeat itself as the years pass. Music is a guiding force throughout the film, offering companionship just when the characters are in the most desolate of states.
Doug Tielli provides a brilliant, original score alongside baroque classical pieces. Schanelec has a background in theatre, which can be felt throughout the film; the drama and heat of the Athenian Sophoclean tragedy is carefully pronounced through meticulous visual style. For those willing to exercise patience and contemplation, Music, with its high levels of depth and intrigue, will be a rewarding experience. If you like your films meditative, mysterious, austere and with incredible costume design, then this flick is essential viewing.
- Starts May 4, with Aliocha Schneider and Agathe Bonitzer. D: Angela Schanelec.