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I might need to see more of French director Claire Denis's movies to really get a handle on her bleak science-fiction drama High Life, but I'll say this: Robert Pattinson, an actor who has laughingly mentioned that directors have taken to showing him masturbating in their movies, very specifically DOES NOT in this one. But we do see him interacting with a baby, sensitive ovaries dully warned. High Life starts as a mystery, with Pattinson and his baby daughter alone on a doomed space mission, struggling with loneliness and depression. Through disjointed, but not too difficult to understand editing, we track back and discover how they got there, what happened to the crew, and eventually flash forward to a resolution. I like a good space movie grounded in present-day tech, but I'm not sure I understand 1) the mission (perhaps not important) and 2) what Denis is ultimately trying to say. And that's really down to its confidinglyly opaque ending. That said, I quite like her vision, dark though it is, and she definitely offers something new to the canon, even though we've had other space-as-isolation films before and after (most recently, Ad Astra). RItuals and societies start to form in microcosm even if they are societies of one or two. Intriguing psycho-sexual stuff, but like I said, I really need to study up to really appreciate it.
So dense, even more than that black hole. The highs and lows of humanity are splayed out without any censor. I'll need to sit with this one for a while.
It has been a week and this film is still lingering inside of my head. I didn't particularly love it at first, but it is starting to grow on me. Will definitely need a rewatch.
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In 2 official lists
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This movie ranks #91 in A.V. Club's The Best Movies of the 2010s
This movie ranks #379 in TSPDT's 21st Century's Most Acclaimed Films