Sunday, 22 June 2008

EIFF: Life Track - Review by Guest Contributor Becky Bartlett

Director: Jin Guang-Hao
Running Time: 99 mins
Mon 23 Jun, 20:15
Filmhouse 3
Wed 25 Jun, 19:15
Filmhouse 3

Feet, seen from the first-person, roll and light a cigarette, suggesting Life Track has some potential. However, as the same camera angle watches as the feet, attached to a man with no arms, playing guitar, picking plants, the view starts to wear thin. While Xiangshu's (Chui Jing-hu) feet are undoubtedly agile, and his coping methods undeniable, his cigarette rolling abilities (his most impressive action) fade in comparison to Prince Randian (Freaks, 1931), who managed the feat with no arms or legs.

Xiangshu befriends Zhang (Jang So-yeon), a deaf-mute. The few characters do not speak, preferring to stare at eachother. Minimalist this film certainly is - no plot, music, dialogue or emotions - interesting it is not. Were it beautifully or artistically filmed, or have an engaging story such as My Left Foot (1989), perhaps its slow pace could be forgiven. Unfortunately the scenery is bland while filming is perfunctory at best, so that Life Track emerges with no life in it whatsoever.

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