2 automnes 3 hivers seems to be an attempt to record a generation: the current 27 to 30 something year olds in France, to be precise. The film is essentially an ensemble piece with four characters narrating their life. Sometimes this is in HD cutaways, like a reality TV show, sometimes they break the fourth wall in the middle of a scene to speak to the audience. The stark difference between the 16mm film and the HD video is terribly distracting. Every time the film cuts between them, both mediums look at their very ugliest. In fact, the change in lighting even makes the actors look like different people on some occasions.
Structurally, the film is divided into countless chapters, sections, interludes and timeframes. This makes the whole feel like a series of short films rather than a coherent feature. The bite-sized chunks seem to finish prematurely and arbitrarily. Chapter after chapter is thrown at the audience with no consistency of theme or even length. Overall the narrative is hindered by this bizarre, segmented rigmarole whose only real selling point is its edginess.
The performances in the film are good, but fall short of being truly engaging due to the directorial obsession with breaking the fourth wall. Vincent Macaigne certainly shines through with a hip and offbeat, but surprisingly charming, performance. The directorial concepts are fascinating, certainly the kind of thing that could dramatically cause ripples in arthouse cinema for years. Yet in 2 automnes 3 hivers, all bundled together, with no time to grow or be fully realised, everything seems just a messy tangle of disconnected, and often uninteresting, thoughts.
- Entertainment: 3/5
- Artistic: 4/5
- Intellectual: 3/5