The five obstructions

When I heard that the film, The Five Obstructions, would be set in more recent times, I thought this film would be easier to understand compared to the past films, but it still proved a bit of a challenge to interpret. The story is narrated in a straightforward manner but the content of the film is what confused me. The character Lars asks Jorgen to remake his old short film The Perfect Human five times with different rules and restrictions. When I saw parts of The Perfect Human I was very confused as to what the goal or the driving force of it was because it just shows a man and woman performing various actions and a person narrating what they are doing and asking why they are performing those actions. The would also repeat himself, and the camera angles would sometimes just pause at the person’s face or body part. After researching a bit to understand the point of Jorgen’s old film, I learned that it was meant to understand the human person and how his mind works because of how it would observe the man and woman as if they were test subjects. This helped me understand better the context of the story of the current film.

I believe that the whole film can be one big remake of The Perfect Human because of how it allows the audience to see and understand the minds of two great filmmakers. Lars sets boundaries for the remakes such as having no set, shot in Cuba, and many more, and these rules can make filming a good movie seem impossible. Then next we see Jorgen adapt to these rules and express his creativity in successfully remaking his old film. I enjoyed the cartoon remake the most because it was a very different approach compared to the past remakes. Even though Lars and Jorgen both stated that they hate cartoons, I believe that the art of the cartoons helped bring beautiful visuals to his old film, and it brought a fresh perspective to me. I also found interesting the second obstruction because one restriction was to not show the place in the film. I was confused at first because I wondered how would he not show the place. Will he put up a blank wall behind him as he ate? Then when he began filming the second obstruction he had placed a transparent wall behind him, and I was impressed with his creativity even though he did not follow the rule to the letter. The film not only showed the creativity of great filmmakers, but it also showed the conditions and processes that filmmakers have to go through. For the first and second obstructions, Jorgen had to fly to Cuba and Bombay, set up the place, and look for actors to join the film. The fourth obstruction needed to be a cartoon, and Jorgen needed the aid of Bob to film because cartoons are not his specialty. The goal of this documentary is to inform and show the audience what creativity in filmmaking can achieve, because his old film was remade five times and yet it gives the audience a fresh perspective.

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