I finally put down Borderlands 2… only to pick up Lego: LOTR. But only for a short time. I’m going to try to post every week or hopefully twice a week if my schedule and money allows. I’m sorry to say that Caffeine Crew Art won’t be as frequent, but when I have it I’ll post it. Ok on to the movie.
The young and future Emperor Hal Tara(James McAvoy, X-Men: First Class, Wanted) seeks vengeance for his father’s death. With the advice of his uncle, he sets out beyond the his kingdom leaving his sister behind, in search of their sworn enemy, the Zeriths. Little does Hal know that his uncle Nezo (Derek Jacobi, The King’s Speech) “pulls the strings” of deceit.
The strength of Anders Rønnow Klarlund’s 2004 Strings is not the basic fantasy story, but the world within which the marionettes inhabit. Every puppet knows that they have strings attached to them and all structures has been created with this in mind. Homes are roofless, the city gate slides up to bar entry. Strings pepper the sky. Even the prison, one of the most moving scenes, is an open room with a grid ceiling. You can see each other, but you can never touch each other.
The simple fact that they know they are marionettes brings a darker tone to a movie about puppets. Knowing that if you cut the string off one’s arm, you lose the arm. Loss a head string and loss you life. To heal the warriors and the rich, they stockpile the poor for new parts. The age and power of each character is represented with their wooden bodies. Hal starts gold, but paints himself oak to blend in. Ghrak, the evil general, has deep cuts and split wood. Death itself is more dramatic as strings fall from the sky. But with all visions of death, it is beautiful to see the birth of a child. I wouldn’t spoil it for you.
If you think this is as campy as Team American, I sorry there is no gratuitous puppet sex. Strings at it’s heart is a Shakespearean tragedy. A story of love, war and the strings that connect us all. I have to thank the library for letting me watch this again.
Have you seen Strings? What other movies with marionettes should I watch? Shave those comments below.