Vita and Virginia
Going to each movie so far has been a treat. However, out of the 13 I have seen so far, my favorite one is still the opening night film. Vita & Virginia, to me had many moments that stuck with me. It starts with Vita arguing with her husband on the radio when he questions her social freedom. I admire that because I always enjoy seeing strong women on the screen due to the forced submission of the opposite gender for countless years. Vita’s lack of understanding for hypocrisy survives the entire film, however, she fails to see her own.
Vita spends the movie trying to seduce Virginia, however, when Virginia gives up the safety of her allusiveness, Vita decides to leave her life. This was heartbreaking to see due to how Virginia previously said, “I’ve given you all of me I can”. Virginia spent her time trying to become a more open lover so Vita could try to understand her, like Vita wanted. However, Vita spent the time Virginia used to grow, to travel instead. Vita viewed experiences as a valid placeholder for growth, all while expecting Virginia to do the opposite.
The end of the movie is my favorite part visually. Virginia runs out of the mansion in her nightgown. She was just with Vita in bed but wakes up and runs away. As Virginia is walking slowly through the house, everything is dark. After Virginia makes her way to an empty field just outside the property, the film shows Vita waking up. In direct contrast to Virginia, Vita is in a black nightgown. The film cuts away to show each room in the darkness highlighting the emptiness the Vita must feel when in her mother’s mansion. The only light in the area around the two troubled lovers, is lightning crackling in the sky.
Clothing was used well throughout the movie. Throughout the majority of the movie, Vita and Virginia would wear contrasting outfits, or at the very least, different colors. However, during pivotal moments, the two would either wear the same color, or an outfit from earlier in the film when everything was easier. For example, Vita wears the outfit she wore on her first solo interaction with Virginia when she hears Virginia is sick. Furthermore, when they both sit in front of a fire with complete mutual attraction for each other and are feeling inspired to inspect the other’s body, they are both in black, instead of just Vita.
Although Vita & Virginia was my favorite film so far, the one that left the biggest scar on my psyche would be This is not Berlin. It has currently been 3 days since I watched it on the 22nd, but I’m still unsure how I feel about it. Although I don’t regret remaining ignorant of the plot beforehand, I do know that I would have been more prepared to try and understand the circumstances and actions in the movie.
The movie begins with the main character in a fight between two school soccer groups, but he passes out because he is utterly disinterested in the waste of energy. Later on, he and his best friend sneak into the friend’s dad’s office where they know he hides adult magazines. They turn them over to their classmates, but for a price of course. Acting as a profitable library of porn magazines is the first real instance of sexuality in the film and example of the boy’s lack of respect towards cultural expectations.
The movie eventually progresses to a drift between the friends after they have been partying at a gay bar for a few days. The main character then is befriended by a group of queer artists that have not been coping well with the pressures of society. The leader of the group then convinces the main character to partake in a political protest of soccer. He poses nude and has sex with men on video for the protest.
The film was all about the effects of feeling out of place and unhealthy ways of coping. The main character eventually gets addicted to drugs and claims to be a homosexual just to fit in.