Tuesday, December 4, 2007

I'm Not There

I went and saw this film over the weekend and absolutely loved it. It is far from being a typical biopic, which should be blatantly apparent to anyone who is familiar the premise. At the beginning of the film there is a note that it is based on "The Songs and Lives of Bob Dylan," which is the first indication that it is not merely a dramatization of Dylan's life story, such as you would find in the very well made Johnny Cash biopic "Walk the Line." Dylan, whose name is never mentioned in the dialog of the film, is portrayed by six different actors (one of them a woman and one a 12 year old black kid) who represent different aspects of Dylan's character at different points in his life. Within each character's storyline things unfold relatively chronologically (though one does employ some flashbacks), though the film jumps between each Dylan, inter-cutting different periods of his life more thematically than chronologically. It is a hard film to describe in words, I think one must experience it to appreciate it at all. As much a meditation on Dylan as it is a biography, this film isn't spoon fed to the viewer, as there is much metaphorical imagery at work, and requires the viewer (I would say challenges the viewer) to think about and consider what is projected on the screen. Probably not a film for everyone, but one that I will definitely buy on DVD and watch and study repeatedly. Below I've posted some videos (Trailers, clips and interviews) concerning the film that I've run across on YouTube.


The background image on this page is a Hebrew translation of the verse from Bob Dylan's song  It's Alright, Ma (I'm Only Bleeding), from which the title of this blog is taken. Translation courtesy of Yoram Aharon of Hod-HaSharon's page--found via YudelLine-- which has many Dylan lyrics in Hebrew.