Frederick Back

film 3 of 7


Film Review by Dean Duncan Jun 1, 2015

The beginning and the end of this film start to look like they’re by the prodigy who will  make The Man Who Planted Trees. Back is some kind of artist, evoking the concrete by means of indirect impressionistic technique, by near-abstraction sometimes. These bookend sections have an appealing formlessness, visually and narratively. The middle part, in which a pied piper figure pulls the children away, is pretty good, pretty true, and pretty of its time. It not only takes good whacks at commercialization and heedless development and the erstwhile progressives that pollute. It’s actually quite good on the insidious workings of ideology, to boot. But Back sure is a tree-hugger! You can’t really fault his position, but you can fault the heaviness, the humourlessness, the sometimes unfairness of his particular take on it.