Persona ★★★★★

My favorite films strike a match and set my hair on fire. They smack me so hard I feel like my face is gone. They pluck out my eyeballs, toss them up in the air, then punch them back in their sockets. They create new facial expressions, cause my mouth can’t keep up with my eyes, and my ears look for silence and bump into sound.

I’ve never seen writing so perfectly in tune with cinematography. Closeups that slice faces in half and splice halved faces. A foregrounded Alma pouring her soul into the stoic and silent Elisabet. Dialogue that’s monologue, a brain chasing its own tail. Alma frantically running after Elisabet, a betrayal of trust that never was. Herself vs her self. 

There’s before I saw Persona, and there’s after I saw Persona. If that sounds pretentious, you probably haven’t seen the film. In eighty-four minutes, Persona pulled a pin from a grenade, stuffed it in my ear, and rearranged my brain. It became a part of me, flitted away, then fell down again, sifted and sinuous. It will always be here, but I’ll have to find it again.

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