Thursday, December 20, 2007

Daft Punk: Electroma

Two Fridays ago saw Vice Canada (and perhaps others) presenting a midnight screening of Daft Punk's feature film, Electroma at the Royal Cinema, conveniently located a half-block from my house. Given that it was a one-time only showing, it was so close, and Daft Punk made a movie that I hadn't yet seen, there was only one Friday night option: get baked and go see this 1-hour long offering from France's favourite robot brothers.

I'll be honest - my expectations weren't that high. I already knew the premise, read some lukewarm reviews, and knew that sitting through a silent film at midnight while high without falling asleep was going to be a chore. But I did it, and I'm a better person for it.

That isn't to say it was particularly good. In fact, had I known that IMDB's eight-sentence plot summary was actually a fully description of literally everything that takes place in the film, I may have stuck around the homestead.

But given that I can't take back the 74 minutes, I opt instead to think of what was good about the flick: a diverse and fitting music soundtrack, scenes of dramatic robot suicide, and the hilarity of drastically oversized human heads.

Actually, writing off the remainder of the film as mediocre-to-terrible is probably unfair. Instead, Electroma's failure lay almost exclusively in the Vincent Gallo-esque pacing - each scene realistically could have been portrayed in one-fifth the time it took to actually unfold. Instead of being captivated, the audience felt more like with the beginning of each scene came the understanding that they could rest their eyes for the following 7 minutes and still awake in time to gather the gist of what happened in time for the next scene change.

But yes. Robots do melt and explode, and their human-replica heads are reminiscent of a bobblehead come to life (think: the ever-amusing "big head" option in NHL 2005 for PS2). So in that, Electroma can't be that bad. And, the music really shines.

Somewhat surprisingly, the soundtrack is comprised of nothing Daft. Instead, it includes everything from Chopin to Curtis Mayfield and psych-rock forefather (and Liv Tyler's adopted father) Todd Rundgren, as well as a signature ethereal offering from Brian Eno. Each track does its best to bring a sense of identity to otherwise bland series of scenes that are at times difficult to sit still through.

From the Electroma OST

Bonus: from Alive 2007

- bbbykmbrly.

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