Tuesday, January 5, 2016

FISH TANK (2009)

"Say hello to the whales for me!"

I love this movie.

After being thrown out of school, fifteen-year-old Mia (who lives with her single mother and little sister in a public house estate in Essex) fills her empty days by walking around getting into trouble and breaking into empty apartments to practice dancing.  Her mother doesn't care about what Mia does and seems more preoccupied with partying than being a mother to her two children.  Maybe she even resents them for being born?  Mia's life changes one morning, when she meets a new guy (Michael Fassbender) that her mother brought home last night.  Nothing is openly implied, but you can tell by Mia's demeanor and the intimate camerawork that she is smitten by this guy.  Her entire life has been nothing but moment-to-moment brutality and a complete lack of parenting and suddenly here's this handsome guy who talks to her like an adult and smiles at her in that certain way.

FISH TANK is one of the best movies of all time and Katie Jarvis' performance is one of the best ever captured on film.  I've watched it over a dozen times and every time I'm completely spellbound by...well, everything!  The story is depressing as fook, but somehow still uplifting and funny.  The performances by the entire cast are spellbinding (I especially loved the little sister.  She steals every scene she's in and I quote her all the time. "I bet there is, like, a million fucking bugs in this grass." "If I'm a fuck face, you're a cunt face", fish A.I.D.S., etc.)  The camerawork by Robbie Ryan is beautiful and the direction/writing by Andrea Arnold is absolutely perfect.  I love how FISH TANK doesn't over-explain itself and lets the audience figure things out for themselves.

Sometimes I hate being stupid and unable to properly express my admiration for a film, but that's kinda where I'm at right now.  Just do yourself a favor and go check out FISH TANK.  Also, say hello to the whales for me.
One of my favorite shots of all time.