Coral Reef English 101-11:20 Professor Yvonne Rutland 7 June 2011 The Vacuous Life of an Intelligent Teenager The film Noi the Albino, written and directed by Dagur Kari, is centered on a teenage misfit, in a small fishing town, who fantasizes of hopeless plans to get out of his white hell. This incredible film is a ten year, work of art; made up of original music by the director’s band, Slowblow, and the intentionally boring, unprofessional actors. Although Noi, himself, is fascinatingly bright, he lacks potential to keep him in school and on the right track.
This film, is by far one of the most bleak, uneventful films, but it is the lack of substantiality of virtually nothing happening, that projects the mood and emotion in such a powerful way that it “seeps into our bones and makes us sympathize” with Noi (Zwick). Unquestionably, the essentially eventless plot makes the emotion of the film standout in a big way. It might appear to be a contrived art movie, but it is actually well put together and uncluttered (Rose). It is a movie that’s made solely to make you look deep to all the emotion, and it appears that everyone in the film is “beaten down by life” (Burr).
The film itself is made to be a slow moving; with most of the dramatic action taking place near the edges of the script. Including Noi’s grandmother’s “methodical manner” of waking Noi, by shooting a rifle out the window or the avalanche killing everyone he ever corresponded with (Scott). Many meaningless events, like his conventional drunk father destroying the music-less piano, breaking into the museum, and stealing from a slot machine in the filling station to buy malt; create a thick barrier for visual angst to hit home.
The emotional level is so deep you almost need to re-watch it to notice it all and to truly appreciate it. Believe it or not, Kari, the director uses every trick he knows to make the film’s mood truly make a mark. The film is shot on a white snow backdrop to make it appear as though the white on white is hopeless and depressing. Kari tries to avoid using primary colors because it brings to much spirit into the film. Kari loathes moving the camera often; so he relies on the still-shot camera angles to make the feelings heavier than quick actions (Scott).
The script itself has a lot of deadpan and tongue in cheek humor, as when his grandmother is doing morning exercises while Noi is flipping something on the stovetop; which lightens the film. He also brings the island theme into the picture discretely by using palm tree wallpaper in their television room, his grandmother making him an island cake, and has Noi’s father, Kiddi, wearing a Hawaiian shirt. Between questioning if Noi is “an idiot or a genius”, you wonder more about his actual state of mind (Rose). Noi’s character generates a model of nearly any other angst teenager, each with his own problems.
Noi has a rough relationship with his family, and it appears as though they are there just to simply be another problem. Especially with his father, with whom he has a reverse father-son relationship, which causes awkward moments throughout the film.. His father forces his stubbornness to shine, and continuously pisses him off. When his father asks if he is homosexual you can tell Noi is visually upset. While his grandmother appears to love him and knows what he’s interested in. But his grandmother doesn’t seem to fit the loving parent role, leaving Noi in the cold.
Noi is accustomed to his “rebellious scorn”, but others, like his mathematics teacher, are driven over the edge by it (Burr). He often uses his stubbornness to lash out, making him hard to understand fully. Noi’s character makes up a typical story about love struck; pissed off teenager coming-of-age that is made new again (Burr). He just wants to be “holing up in the basement room” instead of being at school or socializing with friends (Zwick). He is emotionally rich on all spectrums; while not bringing in too much excitement like the typical actor.
This insanely boring film, when looking past the bleakness of it all, is actually a huge success for Dagur Kari’s first full-length film. He got exactly what he wanted out of the actors in this film. The main character, Noi, does an excellent job of using “body language and facial expressions” to act (Zwick). The film’s tragic ending gives Noi the chance to have a clear slate, and run away from the world he’s literally trapped in. The lack of an action within this movie made it one of the top emotional movies that have yet to be made.
This film will forever linger within you’re mind when you see an albino, an avalanche or a troubled teen. Work Cited Burr, Ty. “Deadpan (Noi) has teen angst down cold. ” (04-23-2004). Boston. com. Web 05-04-2011 “Noi, The Albino. ” Palm, 2002. DVD Rose, Steve. “Fjord Fiesta: How did a modest film about a loner from deepest Iceland sweep so many festival juries off their feet? ” (11-11-2003). Newyorktimes. com. Web 05-04-2011 Scott, A. O. “Wintry Landscapes, External and Internal. ” (03-19-2004). Newyorktimes. com. Web 05-04-2011 Zwick, Roland, E. “Haunting tale of a bored teenager. ” (03-19-2005). Amazon. com. Web 05-04-2011