Eden Log (2007)

<strong class="MovieTitle">Eden Log</strong> (2007)

(On DVD, August 2010) Words fail to explain the sheer tedium felt while trying to watch this film.  An ugly mix of black-and-blue cinematography, trashy set design and muddled plot elements, Eden Log at times feels like a deliberate attempt to antagonize as many members of the audience as possible.  A mostly-silent film in which one speaking actor (Clovis Cornillac, good despite the film) navigates a run-down environment in a succession of slow and moody vignettes, it’s best watched with a far more interesting book in hand, so that you can spend your time doing something useful while the thin mush of SF elements glacially drips out during something pretending to be a plot.  Never mind the misogyny, misanthropy, paranoia and lack of imagination of the script: Eden Log is a series of atmospheric set-pieces featuring one guy caked in mud.  As such, at often works pretty well, especially given what feels like a dollar-store budget: The oppressive feeling of the film is powerful enough to be repulsive in general.  As a narrative, though, it’s twice (maybe thrice) as long as it needs to be, and so never kindles along any kind of lasting interest.  French SF movies often have the tendency to look good while not actually being any good: Eden Log is no exception, albeit it is definitely weaker than most other recent French-SF films.  (It shares many problems with near-contemporary Dante 01, including a bad script co-written by SF writer Pierre Bordage)  And if you’re hoping for a longer review, forget it: I don’t even want to think any longer about this movie.

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