In my just-posted Pig review I asked if HE Patreon subscribers recall a recent (7.27) riff about “how the most interesting films focus on invisible things.” For elaboration’s sake, I’m going to violate the Patreon sanctity and re-post part of that article:
“Most of us are attuned only to life’s tangibles — food, shelter, warmth, money, clothing, pets, guns, cars, shoes, homes, furniture, trees, hills, mountains, oceans, swimming pools, sailboats. Things we can see, touch, smell, eat, wear, boast about and dive into.
“But others, fortunately, are also mindful and in some cases stirred or motivated by invisible things — thoughts, feelings, spirits, ghosts, dreams, intuitions, morality, melancholy, premonitions, memories.
“Any filmmaker can focus on the tangibles. Most of them do, in fact. Movies that are strictly about tangibles are ‘mulch’ movies, a term that I defined earlier this month. Mulch is the source of our shared Hollywood ennui…the muck at the bottom of the dried-up lake…the disease that keeps on infecting…the gas that fills the room.
“Except for a smattering of elite, award-season stand-alones (or festival movies) and select forthcoming streamers like HBO’s Scenes From A Marriage (Bergman remake), Hollywood makes almost nothing but mulch these days. The streaming + re-emerging feature realm is flooded with mulch…empty, inane, meaningless, spirit-less, jizz-whiz “content” crapola that nobody wants to see or cares about, but they’re made anyway because the zone-outs and knuckle-draggers need stuff to watch.
“But only serious directors are able to convey or dramatize the presence of invisible things. The finest films are actually concerned with a mixture of tangible things, which is natural and inevitable in any corner of life, but are driven by the invisibles.”