Friday, March 9, 2012

Director of REGISSÖREN (SE) reviews INVINCIBLE FORCE








FILM BIZARRO 03.06.12
By RONNY CARLSSON

Plot:
A man joins a 90-days work-out program and believes to have found a new reason to live. During these 90 days his body goes through changes, but his body isn't the only thing that changes.

Our thoughts:
What we've seen of Daniel Schneidkraut as a director so far is that when he makes a movie it's not just mindless entertainment. It's an experience that requires both thought and concentration. In a way I don't think it matters if you like his films or not as neither "Seeking Wellness" or "Invincible Force" will leave you unaffected, and that seems to be what they are set out to do. They want to shake your comfort zone, even if just a little bit. And they are very successful at that.

This particular experience follows a man, Drew, during 90 days. He has started a 90-days work-out program that forces him to change his life completely and make working out the main priority. What starts out as just a way to better your physique, leads to him losing his girlfriend, his job and his mind. At first this program makes him feel energetic and happy but he lets it take over his entire world, and he just has to live his life by maximum repetitions.

"Invincible Force" and "The Bunny Game" have something in common - they're not completely fiction. In "The Bunny Game" we had the Rodleen Getsic actually endure the torture that her character goes through, and in "Invincible Force" we actually see the real transformation from a slacker to a machine. I don't know the exact details of the film production but basically Drew Ailes actually did the same transformation as his character. I don't know if it was an experiment for the film or if they filmed around the fact that he was doing it. Either way, this is the so called "hook". This is the thing you'll be hearing about and it's what will gain a lot of interest. I know it did for me. But I am also very happy to find out that the movie isn't just that hook, but it actually has a well-written fictional story around it. And yes, make sure you understand that it's not a documentary - it still has a screenplay that it follows and it's a fictional story. Even though Drew's physical transformation is very interesting to follow, it's the way he starts to act that will keep you interested for the full 130 minutes. The way his and other's lives fall apart around him yet he only cares about himself and his body.

I know that "Invincible Force" got to me simply because of how my mood and thought-process changed through the film. I got involved and wasn't just watching it to be entertained. I wanted to see Drew transform into a fit machine, yet I was also fascinated in what a monster he becomes. For the first 30 or so days (within the movie) you sit there thinking "Maybe I should be working out more...". You get inspired and motivated. And then his life slowly starts to fall to pieces (the worst part was when he took down his "Basket Case 2" poster - hey! If working out makes me lose my film interest, I'm out!) and you start seeing a nice guy turn into an asshole. And actually, I have seen this happen in real life too. People can definitely get too involved into something. I don't really remember how far into the movie this is, but let's say it's through the next 30 days. And then by the end you realize he's a total wreck. We don't know what happens to him after these 90 days, but someone is going to die and very likely Drew too.

It's hard not to praise Daniel Schneidkraut and everyone involved for yet again breaking the typical rules and creating something like this. "Invincible Force" is engaging, devastating and absolutely fascinating. Films that get to you like this are worth remembering as they're rare. You don't have to like these films, but you should be able to recognize what they have done. Now, with "Invincible Force" it's not a problem as I think it's a great film. It's experimental in how it's filmed yet very real in how it was created, and to top it all off it has a good fictional story to tell as well and that's a much impressive feat.

Positive things:
- Seeing Drew the character and Drew the "actor" go through the transformation.
- Tells an interesting story of a man wrecking himself when trying to better himself.
- At first I was afraid I'd be bored because of the runtime but it flows really well.
- I'm usually so-so towards death metal in films (it usually comes off as cheesy ways to show your own taste) but in this one it just works well because of Drew's personality.
Negative things:
- It's both positive and negative that it ends on the 90 day mark. It fits perfectly with the film but at the same time we would've wanted to see what happens next.

1 comment:

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