Man with a Movie Camera ★★★★★

What an experience.

Man with a Movie Camera is filmmaking in its purest form. Unlike most movies of the time, there’s absolutely nothing here that makes this movie comparable to theatre and literature. It’s an experience that could only be expressed in the form of a movie, where the elimination of narrative and characters is not only an advantage, but an essential part of the movie.

Editing and cinematography are what make movies stand out compared to other art forms, and Man with a Movie Camera is the perfect example of that. Some of the angles and framing here are unbelievable, even by today’s standards, and the editing is genuinely the best editing I’ve ever seen in a movie. The order in which the clips are placed allow the viewer to feel tons of emotions throughout its incredibly short runtime, and that is beyond impressive to me, considering the fact that there isn’t a single line of dialogue in this movie.

Like the editing, the score of Man with a Movie Camera is the best score I’ve ever heard in a movie. It’s completely different from other silent movie scores, which usually rely on one instrument or an orchestra to accompany the visuals. Here, the score is jazzy, funky, bombastic, and it even matches what is happening on screen, with one example being a saxophone serving as the sound of a boat’s horn. 

Man with a Movie Camera managed to make me fall in love with movies all over again. It masterfully accomplishes everything that it sets out to do and is the definitive example of the magic of movies.

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