Amos Lassen | Little Rock, Arkansas | 01/06/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
Amos Lassen and Cinema Pride
Rarefy will you find a movie with the sheer intensity of "Combat" (WaterBearer Films). It is brutal, it is courageous, and it is beautiful, "Combat" is actually just a third of trio of films entitled "The Irregularity of the Tearing" and it is the product of the mind of its director, Patrick Carpenter. The two other films on the DVD are "God is a Dog" and "Les 9 Mardis" and the three films together look intimacy, sensuality, and desire.
"God s a Dog" was made in 2004 and is somewhat a record of the director's childhood memories and how they, in turn, interact with his love encounters as an adult. "Les 9 Mardis" or "Nine Tuesdays" has a look at the absurdity of the passage of time and how it can reopen and close past wounds while showing how time gives courage to continue in life.
"Combat" is the third film of the trilogy and the most powerful. It is the story of two young men who can only show their affection for each other by way f acts of physical violence. I had quite expected to be put off by this film, so I was pleasantly surprised by how much I was drawn into it.
Artistically this is a gorgeous film, emotionally it is provocative and compelling and I find it very hard to relay its power. If anyone had walked into my home I am sure they would have been surprised to see me sitting there and staring at my TV screen with my mouth agape and with tears in my eyes. The love between the two men is beautiful and brutal and their way of showing it is something rare to see. As the men lay together in a dimly lit forest, their love is framed by a pale moonlight. I am still unaware of this aspect of love, a love based on physical violence but that doesn't mean it does not work for some. It obviously works for these two handsome men.
By the time the movie was over I felt spent and I was completely lost in thought so much so that I was just not in the mood to do anything but watch the film a second time and t was then that a revelation came to me. What the film is really about is the meaning of love and not about physical violence. As I watched the second time, I concentrated on the faces of the actors and I must say that I have only seen such bliss very few times in my life. What this obviously means is that love for every person is not only different but it is given definition by the way those involved in it choose to define it. I am also sure that violence, witch is not my taste at all, can certainly be an aphrodisiac to some.
"Combat" is not an easy movie but it is one that shows something new and that makes it important. Whether this kind of love is right or wrong is not for us to judge. It is just an aspect of an emotion that it is hard to put into words.