IHAO on ... Sound of Noise

Six musical terrorists hold a city hostage for 24 hours, and the only one who can stop them is a tone-deaf detective who just happens to be from a musical-prodigy family.  That is how an American film with the same plot and setup as Sound of Noise would have described it.  And it is basically accurate.  But it is missing the heart of the film, the essence of what makes it so good and intriguing.

I have come to really love some foreign films.  Other countries' films very rarely line up with the genre system American cinema uses.  And while our lines have been blending slowly, it is nowhere like a foreign film, which I suppose is part of their "foreignness."  Sound of Noise is a romantic comedy heist action mystery procedural action surrealist art film.  That just doesn't sound ... good, does it?  Well, it does kind of sound awesome, but it also sounds messy.  But Sound of Noise is a very tightly made film.

What the hell are you going on about?

I realize reading the past couple bits that I'm coming across a bit mad.  This is not an easy film to talk about, as you can see me struggle.  Let's just go bit by bit.

The acting is pretty good across the board, though nothing amazing or emotional.  Just all enjoyable and all well done.  The direction is very good, with lots of great little film moments and stagings that elevate the film incredibly well.  And the music is beyond reproach.  When a film is about music, you have to hope the music is great.  And Sound of Noise delivers, whether playing drums on a celebrity's stomach or using construction machines as a drum set.  This movie is like Stomp if that had a real plot.  Listen to the music wherever you can, because it is really great.  Probably because the Six Drummers all play themselves, so you have real musicians playing these parts.  I play piano and know a lot of about music, and all of the stuff you see is not faked or body doubled, it is them playing those instruments, and random objects, as far as I could tell.  That is an impressive feat.

The story is great up to a point.  Right around Act 3, they drop a lot of plot threads that built up the film and focus on a character story for our detective, which I do like, but it does leave a whole bunch of loose ends and could have people asking a bunch of logic questions.  Personally, I was along for the ride based on the characters, the music, and the art of the film.  They had me.  But there are large gaps of logic and plot that happen to bring about this change and progress.  The film also ends on a very quiet note, purposefully, but it does leave the film a little empty on the ending, lacking a lot of culmination.  It isn't unsatisfactory, it just hits its peak early for me and no longer builds to a climax and fervor I would have really loved.

Overall, I really like the movie, and cannot wait to share it with people.  It is a talking piece, and a film to be shared with others.  And the music is all just great.  I recommend the flick, especially for a large group.

Grade: B++

1 comment:

  1. It's interesting to think about "foreign" as a genre. Same as "indie" as a genre. While neither one is truly a genre, people know (or should know) what it means to describe them that way. There is a feel to lots and lots and lots of foreign films or of indie films that is recognizable.