About Endlessness is the fourth film of Roy Anderssons I have now watched, and certainly fits with what we anticipate from the work of this auteur, his delves into relativity but more that reflective nature of his work. Screening at the Glasgow Film Festival, About Endlessness is highly anticipated, moving to a larger theatre to accommodate all that wish to see it.
Another to add to Andersson’s cinematic oeuvre with his trademark reflection on human life in balance, the cruelty as well as the beauty. With this particular film of Anderssons this feeling of endlessness is a thread that runs through each of his narratives, whether via time or lives, or themes. His focus on the more insignificant moments during historical events shifts the focus, and allows us to ponder the inconsequential. Be it a moment in a bar, when most are looking outside at the magical scene of snow falling or a couple floating over a war-torn Cologne or a priest losing his faith, and unsure of where to go next. These are all human moments, a window into a life that is perhaps not the most fulfilling or action-packed, but the timing and the quirks of Andersson’s unique style and cinematography hold the audience’s interest.
The acting is marvellous, and is often a touch on the old school form of OTT, but the deadpan, depressed and forlorn looks from many in the cast all sit well with what we have come to know of the work of the director. The moment with the endless supply of champagne for the woman who simply loves champagne stands out across the sketches for the contentment that seems present in that one scene, albeit scraping away at something more. Considered a story about the vulnerability of human existence, About Endlessness is also a work of materful cinema, those wide angle shots we have come to love from Andersson, and that de-saturated grade, which is so prominent with his style. For any fan of his work, it is a must-see, and for any fans of the more insignificant moments being observed, I urge you to see.
For more on the Glasgow Film Festival, which runs until 8th March, click here