Tuesday, January 19, 2010


Originally uploaded by TruthLying
I thought it would be appropriate to write about Northfork seeing as we are suffering from El Nino here, and could get twenty inches of rain before this storm system lets up. If you think I’m a whimp please remember I live in southern California.

Northfork is the tale of a little town named Northfork that is literally going to be leveled because of progress. A new power utility has been promised by the state and it will mean flooding the town to create a new reservoir. Northfork will no longer exist. To aid in the removal of citizens a team of men has been brought together to go house to house and encourage the citizens to leave; as they do this they encounter a strange mixture of local color, wild imaginations and occasionally a violent resistance to leaving.

I’ve wanted to see Northfork since it was in limited release so I was very happy when I finally remember to put it in my Netflix queue. However, while I can say I enjoyed Northfork I am not entirely sure I’d watch it again.

Northfork is a strange little film, one with characters that are never explained, a town that’s never fully seen and I think it’s trying to be a metaphoric representation for something only I can’t quite figure out what that is – which is why I don’t think I’d watch it again. I enjoyed the strange quirkiness of it, but because I could never get a bead on what the film was trying to say that leaves me to think that the filmmakers may not have quite known themselves and may have committed the cardinal mistake of assuming that a lot of allusions would equal a message.

What I did think was spectacular was the visuals in the film. From the color palette to the shots used this was a stunningly visual film. The color palette was bleak, blue and depressed just like the characters struggling to move through the film & the cinematography made the setting come alive in a way such a bleak, abandoned area shouldn’t.

I would be interested to see what the filmmakers thought Northfork was about, and anything else they’ve made. While Northfork might be cluttered, it was interesting to watch.

Director: Michael Polish
Writers: Mark Polish & Michael Polish
Walter O’Brien: James Woods
Father Harlan: Nick Nolte
Flower Hercules: Daryl Hannah
Cod: Ben Foster
Happy: Anthony Edwards

Father Harlan: It all depends on how you look at it; we're either half way to heaven or half way to hell.

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