Lately I’ve been watching more interesting movies through streaming than on DVD. Maybe because independent directors find it easier to showcase their movies online and get some profit than trying to enter the regular distribution circuit.
Anyway, a couple of weeks ago, we watched Le Havre by director Aki Kaurismäki and although is not a movie filmed in Africa or by Africans, it touches the subject of African immigration in Europe.
It’s not your regular Hollywood movie, or your regular independent movie for that matter.
Le Havre is a quite original film that tackles a subject in a way that is at the same time dramatic and funny. It evolves slowly and steady, but once you start watching it you can’t stop. Visually is completely different too, and it looks more a like a collection of paintings than a movie. A dramatic and hard lightening helps to give it that look.
It tells the story of a French man that rescues an illegal African immigrant, just a young boy that escapes from a container full of illegals during a police raid. The man gets more and more involved trying to save this boy from deportation and later to reunite him with his mother in London.
It’s a contradictory film, little emotion is shown and you expect the worst, but it gives you a surprise after another.
I LOVED it!
I admit that it’s different, but in a nice way. The subject is so sad and dramatic, but you can’t stop laughing the whole movie! But you don’t laugh at the characters or the story, buy maybe at the absurdity of it all. You actually identify with the main characters and root for them because despite all their flaws they are good people who try to do their best, to help each other, something uplifting compared to the grim background of the story.
I truly recommended it, and since it’s streaming on Netflix, don’t miss the opportunity to give it a try. For me it’s a master piece.
BTW, for the Argentineans reading this blog, one of the songs played in the film is the tango “Cuesta Abajo” by Carlos Gardel.