9 Doights (9 Fingers)
4th October 2017 6.20pm at ICA Cinema
5th October 2017 3.30pm at Vue West End
8th October 2017 8.45pm at Hackney Picturehouse
It’s dark. A figure by the name of Magloire (Paul Hamy) stands on the station platform, steam from the express sweeping through his hair. Suddenly, he begins to run. From what, we are never too sure, but in the process of evading his pursuers he comes across an ill-fated man lying on the beach. A large financial burden is passed from one to the other, and our long-coated protagonist sets off at a sprint as the waves crash against his ankles. He is eventually caught by his pursuers, who are revealed to be a gang of petty criminals led by the psychologically twisted Kurtz (Damien Bonnard). With nothing to lose, Magloire joins the band and before too long the group, which includes female acquaintances Gerda (Evire) and Drella (Lisa Hartmann), are surfing the seas in search of the mysterious Nowhereland. In a journey that appears to never end, they must all seek to preserve their sanity on the “Factory of Hell”. In a philosophical experiment, 9 Fingers will stretch the minds of even the sharpest academics, but do we really want our eyes crossed?
It is evident from the start why this film has been entered into the “Dare” category for this year’s festival. There are numerous attempts at creating something unique and scintillating to view, yet there are some serious holes in the process of achieving this. The opening to 9 Fingers suggests something very promising. It is understandable that the movie is taking on a 21st-century interpretation of a Noir film, with a black-and-white palette canvassing a modern setting, with characters dressed from the Golden Age of Hollywood. It is after these first scenes, however, that the pleasure in the viewing stops. Enter the endless juxtapositions and paradoxes…
The language and context used in the dialogue slowly but surely grind away at the viewer’s brain cells, leaving one’s mind feeling fried as opposed to entertained. Numerous questions asked by characters are left unanswered, such as who is the mysterious 9 Fingers, and demands an investigation into what the purpose of the film is? There is clearly a moral to this picture, it is just too coded to decipher.
This being said there are pleasing factors to the piece, with a wonderful demonstration of claustrophobia and captivity through a number of personal scenes with Magloire in which his surroundings wrap the audience in a sense of entrapment. There is the feeling that 9 Fingers is going to be a Marmite film. Some may love it, some loathe it. The danger with a movie such as this is that the critical reception could go very, very south.
9 Doights (9 Fingers) does not have a UK release date yet.
Read more reviews and interviews from our London Film Festival 2017 coverage here.
For further information about the festival visit the official BFI website here.
Watch the trailer for 9 Doights (9 Fingers) here: