Sunday, 4 November 2012

Enter the Void (2009)

(AKA How I Learned I Definitely Am Not Epileptic)

A surreal and psychedelic journey through death, drugs and reincarnation. The experience of watching Enter the Void is difficult to properly articulate.

Slick and stylishly produced, ETV might be a little hard to follow at times but the initial confusion gets ironed out as the movie goes along. It tells, in a non-chronological order, the stories of an American, Oscar, who has moved to Japan with his sister and the friends they make there in the seedy drug and sex fuelled underworld of Tokyo. Oscar meets his end at the hands of the city's police and we go from seeing the world literally through his eyes to following his less well defined experience of his memories and the journey of his soul as he observes his friends and associates as they deal with his passing.

The series of bad decisions made by the sometimes bad people of the drive the plot through the drugged up hallucinogenic hazes and bright neon lights of Japan at night. People have fucked up childhoods, become fucked up adults and some of them fuck up at the end of the line.

But honestly, as I said above, it's difficult to accurately surmise what watching Enter the Void is like without getting too technical and abstract, but it's a film the likes of which I've never seen before. Right from the off with the seizure inducing opening credits (which were a great influence on Kanye West's video for All of the Lights, by the way), it's an interesting and otherworldly experience you're unlikely to see many imitations of any time soon. A never ending procession of light and colour take you through the impressive runtime (2hr40m) from the very start to the, well, quite memorable, end sequence.

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