Five Dedicated to Ozu
Iranian director Abbas Kiarostami took a new direction in 2002 with Ten, a minimalist, digital-video piece about a cab driver and 10 of her fares filmed from two fixed angles. Now he’s followed it up with Five Dedicated to Ozu, and in terms of scope, Five makes Ten look like Lawrence of Arabia times Intolerance. Five consists of five separate long takes of the Spanish coastline, with no music, dialogue, story or camera movement. In the first shot, a piece of driftwood rolls along the beach until the current carries it away; in another, ducks march back and forth in front of the camera; in the rest, something else dull yet vaguely hypnotic happens. In many respects the work of a true master, Five is oddly enchanting, hallucinatory, magical … and a rigorous test of the attention span.