Satantango ★★


Letterboxd, you are incredible. You somehow managed to rangle up countless spectacular ratings, shot this right up the top 250 list, and suckered me and a bunch of other users into spending 7 whole hours watching a bunch of Hungarian villagers stare at people, walk slowly, get drunk, quietly plot, torture a cat and very little else.

There are a collection of gripping scenes in the film, but for every one that compels you to invest your attention there are several that are tedious and ridiculously self-indulgent. Sure, we get it. This is a desolate world these farmers live in. There is stagnation and desperation that will continue to haunt them in a world driven by working yourself to the bone. 7 hours was not even close to necessary to get this point across. I can’t even really call this well acted either unless your definition of great acting is how long someone can hold the same facial expression for.

A director like Stanley Kubrick must look like Michael Bay in the eyes of Béla Tarr. I can’t comprehend why anyone would think stretching out somber long sequences by this much somehow adds value to them. If Tarr ever comes out of retirement and makes a film about paint drying, he would probably tell the paint to dry more slowly.

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