only lovers left alive: movie review / gush

i have said it before and i must say it again: if you are a vampire, i want in. turn me.

i am rearticulating this in light of jim jarmusch’s gorgeous new vampire classic only lovers left alive. jodie recommended it, and i was going with my favorite movie buddy, mike, so i had high expectations.

without spoilers, i just want to say: it is a joy of a movie. exquisite, from the pace to the soundtrack to the landscapes to the clothing to the peculiar problems these vampires face amongst their buttery leathers, intricate moroccan textiles, walls and stairs and piles of books, ancient instruments, ornate robes, cheekbone speeches.

it’s gorgeous.

and it’s set in detroit (albeit a fantastical-alternate-universe detroit with only one black person in it. and that black person is jeffrey wright!)!

and tangier, which looked much better in the movie than it did for the few hours i was there.

here are the other reasons i love this film:

tilda swinton is a delight, that is just her truth. i dressed particularly happy style for the film in her absence and her honor. as eve, she is a direct hit of everything good – swag, lilt, fervor, pleasure. she stomps around the movie all twenty feel tall and full of compassion and good choices and wonderful things she’s learned. her character offers a powerful theory on life – that we are not here to obsess about ourselves, but to connect, learn, love, dance. and she dances, and it’s a wonderful thing to see, she’s a slinky benevolent demon.

jarmusch gets detroit like an intimate stranger. he captures the quiet wild feel and sound of the city if only you know it at night: the glowing skyline across what can look like a forest, the vast clearish skies, the juxtaposition of old rambling homes, empty intersections in rare streetlamps, the isolated clubs where genius can be heard before the world recognizes it.

the movie also offers a beautiful example of the life of lovers – reading, traveling, making and consuming music, loving. delight, adventure, reuniting, nesting, care, tenderness.

jarmusch touches on very specific emotional needs, like tom hiddleston’s adam wanting to uncouple the act of sharing his work with the world from the wretchedness of fame.

it’s just a wonderful film. i recommend it on the big screen, particularly for the closing scene.