Fish and Cat (Shahram Mokri, 2013)

Discussions of specific films and franchises.
Message
Author
User avatar
swo17
Joined: Tue Apr 15, 2008 10:25 am
Location: SLC, UT

Re: Fish and Cat (Shahram Mokri, 2013)

#26 Post by swo17 » Fri Oct 09, 2015 1:31 am

Alright, I played the disc again on my computer with VLC Media Player and it was much more tolerable. It looked the best with Deinterlace set to "Blend," but I noticed that at some of the other settings it looked as bad as it had on my Oppo, so what I was commenting on before could just have to do with the Oppo's upscaling algorithm. It's a shame that a new DVD for a new film can't have a better encode, but I guess I'd just call the image mediocre instead of a disaster.

As for the film, what a wonderfully weird experience. I kind of want to watch it again right now if I didn't have work in the morning. It's a lot more low-key than might be suggested by zedz's reference to, say, The Texas Chainsaw Massacre earlier (in a sense, it could just be a really, really well orchestrated home video that some friends made one weekend), but maintains a nice eerie and mysterious feel throughout. Oh, and no one has mentioned the score, so I will just say: What a score!

jmj713
Joined: Sat Apr 23, 2005 10:47 pm

Re: Fish and Cat (Shahram Mokri, 2013)

#27 Post by jmj713 » Sat Oct 10, 2015 12:18 pm

Criterion better jump on it!

User avatar
Tommaso
Joined: Fri May 19, 2006 10:09 am

Re: Fish and Cat (Shahram Mokri, 2013)

#28 Post by Tommaso » Sat Mar 05, 2016 7:11 pm

swo17 wrote:Alright, I played the disc again on my computer with VLC Media Player and it was much more tolerable. It looked the best with Deinterlace set to "Blend," but I noticed that at some of the other settings it looked as bad as it had on my Oppo, so what I was commenting on before could just have to do with the Oppo's upscaling algorithm. It's a shame that a new DVD for a new film can't have a better encode, but I guess I'd just call the image mediocre instead of a disaster.
Yep, I've just watched this and would agree that it looks atrocious on a regular player (mine is a Pioneer, and I'm not upscaling because I still watch on my old tube, which normally handles interlacing problems much better than most flatscreens I came across elsewhere). The picture problems are so bad that I actually suspected they had nothing to do with the transfer but might be a result of this having been shot on a not-exactly great digital video cam (I mean, Kiarostami's "Ten" also doesn't look good because of the technology used). But then I played the thing via VLC and most of the problems disappeared, as you say. Very, very strange. It must be an encoding problem then, but the encode isn't even interlaced but progressive, according to VLC's codec info. Curiously, on my standalone player there are no picture problems during the start and end credits, so perhaps there's a particular sensitivity towards the video technology in the film proper (and the PAL conversion might be a problem too)?

Anyway, despite of all this, I was baffled by the film itself. I don't know what to make of it yet, but it's complex and needs further viewings. The one-shot technique is used extremely effectively because it doesn't allow you to try to make sense of the film by interpreting the various 'repeats' just as flashbacks with different point-of-views regarding the characters. Instead, the film really creates the feeling of time being stuck either in a loop or the film being set in 'no time'. I'm not sure whether the genre references - twens in the woods, cannibalist restaurant owners - don't distract from the characters and their backstories and the possible philosophical implications of the 'eternal present', but that might just be my general dislike for the genre(s) the film plays with (rather than quotes). So, my first impression: a little bit like an Iranian Raoul Ruiz film.

User avatar
swo17
Joined: Tue Apr 15, 2008 10:25 am
Location: SLC, UT

Re: Fish and Cat (Shahram Mokri, 2013)

#29 Post by swo17 » Sun Feb 04, 2018 6:57 pm

FerdinandGriffon wrote:
zedz wrote:On the other hand, it looks like Llinas' Extraordinary Stories might finally be getting a release after all these years, so miracles can happen!
How and where? I've been kicking myself about missing its brief run for three years now.
Not sure of the best thread to put this in, but Extraordinary Stories is finally available from Intermedio.

User avatar
zedz
Joined: Sun Nov 07, 2004 7:24 pm

Re: Fish and Cat (Shahram Mokri, 2013)

#30 Post by zedz » Sun Feb 04, 2018 8:59 pm

swo17 wrote:
FerdinandGriffon wrote:
zedz wrote:On the other hand, it looks like Llinas' Extraordinary Stories might finally be getting a release after all these years, so miracles can happen!
How and where? I've been kicking myself about missing its brief run for three years now.
Not sure of the best thread to put this in, but Extraordinary Stories is finally available from Intermedio.
Hallelujah! Maybe in another ten years we'll get, I don't know, Melody for a Street Organ, Paper Soldier and The Forsaken Land.

EDIT: But - no indication of English subs (and I'm sure there was mention of them when it was just listed as vaguely 'coming soon').

User avatar
zedz
Joined: Sun Nov 07, 2004 7:24 pm

Re: Fish and Cat (Shahram Mokri, 2013)

#31 Post by zedz » Mon Feb 12, 2018 3:55 pm

Intermedio have confirmed no English subs for Extraordinary Stories, alas. Paging SecondRun!

User avatar
swo17
Joined: Tue Apr 15, 2008 10:25 am
Location: SLC, UT

Re: Fish and Cat (Shahram Mokri, 2013)

#32 Post by swo17 » Mon Feb 12, 2018 4:08 pm

Que lastima

User avatar
dadaistnun
Joined: Thu Nov 04, 2004 8:31 am

Re: Fish and Cat (Shahram Mokri, 2013)

#33 Post by dadaistnun » Mon Jan 06, 2020 11:03 am

So...this was pretty great. Zedz's description at the top of the thread does a great job of summing up the head-spinning experience of watching it. The humor was much more pronounced than I expected, especially the recurring conversation between the two men regarding the nephew who had been shot eight times with six bullets. Swo rightly praised the amazing score; layering the score over top of Moonlight Sonata when the one cook listens to music through headphones was a particular highlight. I’d add that the entire soundscape is very impressive and really helps make the location memorable. (I watched the film the morning of New Year's Eve; the weather that day felt and looked much like that of the film — chilly, wet, muddy. I also live in a semi rural area that has a lot of similarities to the lake and woods seen here. It was a bit unnerving.) The playing around with time, and perhaps even by extension space, has had this turning and re-configuring itself in my brain for much of the past week.

Regarding the final scene:
SpoilerShow
it reminded me a bit of the ending to Cria Cuervos with its voiceover description of being killed, followed by a crane shot and catchy music.
  

I was reading what I could find on the film online and came across this:
The fleeting moment went unnoticed by foreign film commentators. In 24 Frames, the last film by the late Abbas Kiarostami, often hailed as Iran’s greatest filmmaker, the director places a note that is written in Farsi underneath a tree. It is a tribute to the person whose name is inscribed on it.

The note reads "Shahram Mokri", and refers to one of Iran’s most exciting new talents whose second feature Fish & Cat Kiarostami highly admired. The soft-spoken Mokri has never pointed out this heartfelt tribute in any interview to date, refusing to bring attention to himself
I just rewatched 24 Frames yesterday and didn't notice this. I know parts of it were screened early before the film was complete; I wonder if it was in a segment that did not make the final cut. Ahmad Kiarostami mentions in his interview on the disc that there were around 30 completed or nearly completed frames to work with.

User avatar
dadaistnun
Joined: Thu Nov 04, 2004 8:31 am

Re: Fish and Cat (Shahram Mokri, 2013)

#34 Post by dadaistnun » Tue Mar 24, 2020 11:07 pm

Two of Mokri's short films are on Vimeo:

Limits of the Circle
Ando-C

Both are single take affairs, and very impressive (to me at least) on a technical level. He credits "with great respect" Van Sant's Elephant in the former and Mike Figgis's Time Code in the latter. Both shorts are subtitled (a little roughly, but not to great detriment). Limits uses Philip Glass's Candyman theme to good effect.

Mokri looks to have a few feature in production for this year titled Careless Crime.

dda1996a
Joined: Tue Oct 27, 2015 6:14 am

Re: Fish and Cat (Shahram Mokri, 2013)

#35 Post by dda1996a » Wed Mar 25, 2020 3:28 am

His new film, Invasion, is available to stream:
http://www.damneddistribution.com/invasion
There are three different options. Haven't tried it, and wondering if they have English subs. But the trailer looks interesting...

User avatar
knives
Joined: Sat Sep 06, 2008 6:49 pm

Re: Fish and Cat (Shahram Mokri, 2013)

#36 Post by knives » Wed Mar 25, 2020 12:10 pm

Those short films are great, but word to the wise: the subtitles are horrible and should be taken like Godard's Navajo ones.

Post Reply