The Ape (Apan)

Last night we saw our first of five festival films (phew!), The Ape, or Apan in Swedish (tiff | imdb). It is, Nellie and I agree, a prototypical festival film. Interesting, but way too outside the mainstream to ever have a wide release, or maybe any release at all in North America.

Taking my cue from the TIFF guide, I can’t reveal anything about the film. The camera rarely left star Olle Sarri, indeed it seemed desperate to keep up, but the audience was left in the dark as to what was happening (just as the actor was, for the most part) as we chased along behind. It got shocking and very tense, and never made it easy on the viewer. In the Q&A after, director Jesper Ganslandt played coy with people who inevitably and aggravatingly ask “what did x mean?” or “what did y symbolize?”, I suppose hoping those audience members would realize that they’re part of the art too. Personally I was glad that I got to be part of it last night.

Not a stunning start to our festival, but certainly a natural one.


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