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Morvern Callar [Import]

Samantha Morton , Kathleen McDermott , Lynne Ramsay    R (Restricted)   DVD
3.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)
Price: CDN$ 50.47
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Most helpful customer reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A rare wildflower is not for everyone to see. May 30 2004
By listost
I watched this movie last night... There were about ten people in the room when it started, and only three of us were left when the credits rolled on the screen. It wasn't surprising to me, but that's because I don't have much faith people's patience (or good taste, but that's another matter).
The movie is about self-discovery. That is what is advertised on the dvd box. This is a clear indication that the movie begins badly and ends well. And my theory proved true: The movie begins with death, grime, drab colors (in contrast to the holiday season's artificially flashing bulbs), drugs, sex.
The main character, Morvern Callar played by Samantha Morton, reacts to her boyfriend's death by leaving the banality of her life and into a journey among the rich colors and flavors of Spain. After breaking out from a self-contained "tourist hotel", she finds herself in the 'real' Spain. The cinematography in these shots are some of the most beautiful you'll find in any movie... the feeling of freedom versus mediocrity expressed in the shots, and the emerges of Samantha Morton's (Sweet and Lowdown, Jesus' Son, Minority Report) brilliant acting within the simplicity of the natural world is worth every moment.
I say this movie isn't for everyone though I would like to be proved wrong... thus my advice to everyone is: be patient with this one, and you will find that it is a rare wildflower.
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4.0 out of 5 stars How you you define art? May 24 2004
There is no answer to the above question, however if you want an example of it, then watch this film. Why? Because it provokes a reaction through the display of a story. Sure, I like a Hollywood comedy/action/horror plot as much as the next guy, but it doesn't provoke reaction. Just popcorn for the brain.
This is fresh Spanish paella washed down with a good Scottish ale. Satisfying to see great films coming out of Scotland, and reflecting some of the dismal reality I experienced there throughout my childhood. I could relate completely to their lives, but at the same time gripped by the plot. What was she thinking? How could she do that? WHY WON'T SHE TELL SOMEONE?
However, I've never experienced such pain and don't know how I would deal with it. This movie starts to convey some of her anguish.
I think jumping from a soft scene into hardcore gabber is very apt, because that's what's happening in her mind. Gentle internal weeping, to outright anger and rage at her boyfriend; how could you leave me if you loved me? I think the body dismemberment is really a revenge act against him.
For the naysayers, ask yourself what it is you really didn't like? The movie, or your own thoughts about the movie...
Took a star off, as I noticed the audio difficulties and a couple of other mistakes.
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4.0 out of 5 stars A Tough but Ultimately Radiant Little Film Feb. 17 2004
By Grady Harp TOP 100 REVIEWER
MORVERN CALLER is an example of films that have such an idiosyncratic flavor that much attention and intelligence AND patience is required of the viewer. Because of the technique of direction and cinematography and because the Scottish brogues used by the cast are all thick and dark and a bit plodding, the first fifteen minutes of the film may lose it audience. But struggle a while and the rewards are plentiful.
The superb Samantha Morton plays the title role, a poor, grocery store worker in dankest Scotland whose boyfriend has committed suicide as the film opens. It is Christmas and Morvern has no idea of how to cope until she notices his computer screen with the statement READ ME. Apparently her dead boyfriend had just completed his first novel, instructing Morvern to send it to the publisher. In a trance Morvern changes the name of the author to her own name, prints out the novel and sends it off to the London publisher. While she gets rid of the body she takes some cash and a credit card and discovers she has enough money to take a holiday with her friend Lana. After some reactive partying to stem her disillusionment, she convinces Lana to take a holiday to Spain with her. We move from dark (yet luminously atmospheric) Scotland to the bright madness of Spain. There the two friends separate as Lana longs to go back home, finding the party over. Morvern calls the publisher who comes to meet her in Spain because they have elected to publish "her" book for a large sum. Morvern returns to her home a changed person, a woman who has taken risks and continues (and will continue) to explore life one day at a time.
As stated before, much of the story in dialogue is lost because it is simply un-understandable. Yet Samantha Morton really does not need words to create a character: her face, body, and inner light illuminate the screen. The film is not an easy one, but its rewards are phenomenal. Take the time.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Where's the beef? Jan. 6 2004
Morvern Callar (Lynne Ramsay, 2002)
Lynne Ramsay first came to the world's attention a few years back with Ratcatcher. She now turns in her second feature film, Morvern Callar. I guess you could call Morvern Callar a slice-of-life film in the same way you could say that of Ratcatcher. The question is, is Morvern Callar's life one you want a slice of? (Ramsay is continuing in that vein in her choice of films; her next project is an adaptation of The Lovely Bones.)
Morvern Callar (the gorgeous Samantha Morton, probably best known to American audiences as Agatha the psychic from Minority Report) is a low-income girl in a dead-end job. She wakes up one Christmas morning to find that her boyfriend has committed suicide (and worse yet, done it in the doorway between the living room and the kitchen), leaving her a note, money to cover the funeral expenses, and the text of his novel, with instructions on which publishers to send it to. Her reaction? Going out and partying with her best friend Lanna (Kathleen McDermott, in her first big-screen appearance). No reason to let a suicide dampen your plans...
The main feeling I got from Morvern Callar (adapted from Alan Warner's novel of the same name) was that much was missing from it. This would not be unusual with films of novels, but I haven't yet read the book as a comparison. (What does it say about a film when you suspect pieces of it are missing before you even read the book?) The film ends up with an impressionist, surreal feel that keeps the viewer's attention, but at the same time leads to asking the question "what's the backstory here?" a few times too many.
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Most recent customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars my favourite movie
this is my favourite movie, and i've seen a lot of movies. not for everyone though i guess (a bit morbid)
Published on Nov. 6 2004 by Shonna
2.0 out of 5 stars poor sound, no subtitles
I could not understand the dialogue on the dvd. It was mixed too low and the British slang and accent made it impossible to understand. Read more
Published on July 12 2004
3.0 out of 5 stars Intriguing, polarizing film
There's a lot to like about this film.... it has amazing sound design (maybe the best I've come across since _Requiem for a Dream_) and is terrifically visually inventive (color... Read more
Published on April 24 2004 by Stephen M. Glaister
2.0 out of 5 stars oh my god! what a let down
What was up with the gratuitous nude scenes? I saw that woman's private parts in that film more than I see my own in a week! Read more
Published on April 18 2004
1.0 out of 5 stars In a story, something must happen
I am a great Samantha Morton fan, and so it was high expectations that I got my hands on this film. And I was absolutely astonished by how bad it is, notwithstanding all the awards... Read more
Published on April 7 2004
1.0 out of 5 stars WHAT A CROCK!!!!
why did you go to spain? what was that? why did you chop up your boyfriend? I went back to blockbuster and hid the three copies of this so nobody else would waste their time and $. Read more
Published on March 19 2004 by Michelle Allen
4.0 out of 5 stars What gives with the sound?
I enjoyed this movie and thought the DVD was okay, except for the sound. In parts of the film the sound is out of sync with the video so that it looks like it was dubbed. Read more
Published on Feb. 15 2004
1.0 out of 5 stars LOSER
This is 93 minutes of your life wasted. Unless, of course, you're interested in a nobody who is going nowhere and doing nothing with her life. Read more
Published on Jan. 25 2004
4.0 out of 5 stars Numbing, beautiful, powerful, hypnotic.
"Morvern Callar" is such a wonderful piece if cinematic art. It's tempo and style set it apart from most other films you'll see. Read more
Published on Jan. 22 2004 by Sugar1000
5.0 out of 5 stars A movie that stays with you
Judging by the other reviews here, Morvern Callar is the kind of movie that people tend to love or hate. Read more
Published on Jan. 17 2004
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