Blow Up was a difficult movie to understand because of the lack of dialogue. While I was watching the movie, I found it difficult to keep up with the one-man, almost-silent scenes that seemed important to the plot. It took me awhile to fully engross myself in the film because the first few scenes had no clear cohesion. Characters were not properly introduced and had no distinct exit from the story.
If I were to view the film through a realistic lens, it would have been open-ended and quite strange. I didn’t understand the importance and purpose of the mimes in the beginning and end of the film. I didn’t understand the relevance of the two teenage model wannabes who pestered the leading man into photographing them. There were many parts that I felt were not that essential to telling the story. But of course, I’m taking a basic film class with absolutely no idea how films are supposed to be watched and appreciated so I should just stop talking about what I would or would not have added to the movie. Above all though, I think the film is deeper than what it presents.
Through a metaphoric lens, the film could have several symbols that mean different things. As a basic film student with no experience in this whatsoever, I will feebly try to make sense of what I saw in the movie. At the beginning when the mimes poured in the city, causing quite a ruckus, a few of them asked the film’s leading man for money. I guess these mimes could stand as the performing artists that may perform quietly (or unnoticed) yet ask for money voraciously.
When the lady photographed in the park was seen in a later scene disappeared as quickly and fluidly as she had entered the frame, could be the film’s way of teasing the audience with the promise of an answer yet yanks it right away. The film teases the audience with the promise of the answer yet does not conclude the movie on that note. The storyline of the movie kind of focused on some murder mystery thriller theme yet does not give us the answer to any of the “whodunit” questions. There were no paths that led to the killer’s motives. We get what happened and we are led to believe our own hypotheses.
An interesting aspect I noticed in the movie was the leading character. He was not exactly likable, he wasn’t a man to be emulated. He was the anti-hero that accidentally documented a supposed murder. The world of fashion, lights, and glamour disillusioned him in a way that he views the world through the eyes of a photographer and not as a human being. Everything ugly should not come near him and women are objects that he is not attached to. I think the possibility of him being a hero and being more than just a fashion photographer appealed to him. Despite being successful and well-sought after, his career in photography lacks a certain meaning so he tries to fill the hole with other kinds of human interest photography.
The film was very difficult for me to watch, to understand and to write about. I liked it, though because it confused me.