0 The Michigan Daily - michigandaily.com
Wednesday, October 19, 2011- 7A
The Michigan Daily - michigandailycom Wednesday, October19, 2011 - 7A
M83 finds out every
dream needs an end
"Get off of that piano and go make me some crumpets."
Sister' not just sidekick
By SEAN CZARNECKI
Beyond the regular costume
drama, "Mozart's Sister" is a
of angst and the
pain of silence. ***
We like to think
that that no Mozart'S
one - not even Sister
our loved ones
- can keep Atthe
us from our Michigan
dreams, but this
isn't usually the Music Box
case. Yet when
director Rene Fdret ("The Mys-
tery of Alexina") starts rolling his
film's credits, he assures us that
we hadn't conformed because we
were cowards. He assures us that
we are no different from Maria
Anna "Nannerl" Mozart, sister of
the legendary Wolfgang Mozart.
While the film is centered
on the titular Nannerl (Marie
Feret, "Il a Suffi Que Maman
S'en Aille..."), a would-be musi-
cal prodigy, and her search for
self-realization as she squirms
in the constraints that bind her,
it sheds light on others as well.
Her love interest, Louis de France
(newcomer Clovis Fouin), fears
he may become his own debauch-
ery-loving father, and Louis's sis-
ter Louise (Lisa Faret, "Il a Suffi
Que Maman S'en Aille..."), has
been isolated in an abbey away
from her own family, where she
befriends the young female prod-
igy Nannerl. They each live under
a shadow whose shade they can-
But "Mozart's Sister" never
portrays conformity as single-
faceted. For instance, Nannerl
forsakes her own talent to devote
f to her family and brother's acters through the creaky rooms
, not only because of the and carriages only to feel like
ocial standards for women, they're being led on an aimless
o out of love. As for Louis, chase, without direction or drive.
ds his relationship with There are other times when the
rl, both under the pressure drama of the film swells, tying
expectations for him as a together all the loose ends, and
nd his fear of livingthe life could've simply ended. That said,
her led. And Louise - who "Mozart's Sister" is a character
o be mischievous and play- study that has no intention of
assumes a life of discipline being fast-paced or kinetic.
abbey because of her ado- In a twist of irony, the actresses
for the word of God and who played Nannerl and Louise,
:her's demand for her obe- characters pushed downthepaths
. As is evident here, to call their parents chose for them, are
rt's Sister" just a feminist Ffret's daughters. Odd - but it
ould rob it of the subplots serves as another testament of the
mplete it. depths of "Mozart's Sister." The
film moves beyond the usual com-
ing-of-age tropes rife in the genre.
le talent Wvas Its attention is drawn toward the
reasons for the characters' silence
etic, but the and those who speak above them.
As is shown in this film, genius is
ime wasn't neither unleashed by passion, nor
is it extinguished by cowardice
alone. But by circumstance, it can
either be bolstered to greatness or
6 Fdret allows his story muted to oblivion.
By ANDREW ECKHOUS
For the Daily
It's a pretty safe bet that if
"The Neverending Story" were
made into an album, it would
thing like ,
Up, We're M83
a children's Hurry Up,
acid trip of a We're
movie, M83's Dreaming
is an ode to Mote
innocence, dreams and the trib-
ulations of growing up - and
just as "neverending."
The successes on Hurry Up
are triumphant. "Intro" slowly
morphs into an epiphany replete
with reverb-y choir, emphat-
ic drums and energetic bells.
"Midnight City," the first single,
lays intoxicatingly danceable
yelps over fuzzy, flowingsynthe-
sizer and throws in a surprising-
ly effective '80s-style saxophone
solo. Interspersed throughout
are atmospheric instrumentals
such as "Where the Boats Go"
and "Train to Pluton," which
transport listeners from mood to
mood without seeming forced.
However, for all the impres-
sive mood-setting and power-
ful drum and synthesizer lines,
Hurry Up, We're Dreaming sinks
under the weight of its own
But Hurry Up fails precise-
ly because it is too ambitious.
French-born Anthony Gonzalez
- the lone member of M83 -
has crafted a gargantuan double
album spanning over 70 minutes
that is at times an otherworldly
masterpiece. However, Gon-
zalez seems to repeat himself
on multiple occasions, spoiling
the lush, ambient rock that has
been M83's trademark for over
By no means does Gonza-
lez fail completely; in fact, the
music is transcendent in many
instances. The album's expan-
siveness lends to Gonzalez's sur-
real, celestial atmosphere and is
is a re
d from his own growing "Midnight City" is a fantastic
and exciting track, but when
30, Gonzalez decided he there are two other songs that
d a colossal change in sound a little too similar ("Clau-
e and moved from south- dia Lewis," "Steve McQueen"), it
ance to Los Angeles. The makes for a repetitive listening
tic shake-up, along with experience.
lone time in Joshua Tree Gonzalez believes the two
al Park, inspired the con- sides of the album act as "sib-
lings," but they sound a little
more like twins, which is unsur-
Double the prising when considering the
lack of diversity in the produc-
asur, do ble tion process. Gonzalez acted as
asure, double sole songwriter, musician and
he fun' oniy producer behind Hurry Up, and
it's evident. The first seven songs
rtly applies. are original, emotional and
memorable, but 13 of the next
15 are alternate versions of the
tive musician to record A double album should be a
e to dreams: "How every journey full of stylistic twists
different, (and) how you and turns'- otherwise, it
differently when you're becomes stale. While Hurry Up,
a teenager, or an adult," as We're Dreaming is a compelling
Spin Magazine. journey in some sense, there is
ry Up, We're Dreaming is not enough substance to justify
about dreaming, but the 73 minutes of music. No one is
is a polarizing tableau questioning M83's ability to gen-
0s synthpop. With few erate mammoth soundscapes, as
ions, the entire album Gonzalez's body of work speaks
minder of what happens for itself. But next time, cut out
an artist's vision clouds half so that the "neverending"
usical sensibilities. Sure, story can end.
to grow organically, branch-
ing off to reveal the characters'
innermost selves. Enough screen
time is lent to each of the char-
acters for their stories to build,
but never does it nauseate the
audience with over-sweetened
romance or schmaltz.
While his subtle and car-
ing touch is a welcome sight,
Feret should realize that it's a
film - a motion picture - not a
fragile painting from the period
he portrays. Films are meant to
entertain, not simply to look at,
and while the story shouldn't
be manhandled, it'd be better
if it was at least pushed along.
There are moments when the
audience is following the char-
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