The Turin Horse 2011

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(16) IMDb 7.7/10
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The Turin Horse recalls the whipping of a horse in the Italian city of Turin which is rumoured to have caused the mental breakdown of philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche Filmed in black-and- white and shot in only 30 long takes, the film depicts the repetitive daily lives of the horse and it’s owner.

Starring:
Erika Bok, Janos Derzsi
Rental Formats:
DVD, Blu-ray

Product Details

Discs
  • Feature ages_15_and_over
Runtime 2 hours 26 minutes
Starring Erika Bok, Janos Derzsi, Erika Bók, Mihaly Kormos, Ricsi
Director Bela Tarr
Genres Drama
Studio FUSION MEDIA SALES
Rental release 10 September 2012
Main languages Hungarian
Subtitles English
Original title A Torinói ló
Discs
  • Feature ages_15_and_over
Runtime 2 hours 26 minutes
Starring Erika Bok, Janos Derzsi, Erika Bók, Mihaly Kormos, Ricsi
Director Bela Tarr
Genres Drama
Studio FUSION MEDIA SALES
Rental release 10 September 2012
Main languages Hungarian
Subtitles English
Original title A Torinói ló

Customer Reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars
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38 of 39 people found the following review helpful By GlynLuke TOP 500 REVIEWER on 25 July 2012
Format: DVD
What makes a great film?
The idea occured to me towards the end of this lengthy, apparently final work of Bela Tarr, in the small cinema screen where I saw it on its one meagre day`s release, a dozen or so of us there to watch it weave its rare spell.
Well, is it the overlapping backchat of His Girl Friday; Wayne`s eyes of depthless rage in Red River; the shadowy doorways, delirious camera angles and suggestively empty squares of The Third Man; or perhaps it`s the ecstatic tree fighting and wall climbing in Crouching Tiger...or the deceptively simple fables of Eric Rohmer? Yes! Yes, all that and more. You just need to open yourself to the possibility that there might be some way of filming `life` that you haven`t seen yet - or at least not in such a way before.
This is my first exposure to Bela Tarr. I have been longing to see one of the Hungarian`s films since I heard they existed, especially having lived for two years in Budapest, and therefore interested in anything emanating from that strange and exasperating country. I sat engrossed and riveted, despite a two-and-a-half-hour running time, and its grudgingly unhurried pace. But if you are at all used to `slow` films (but what, after all, is a `slow film`...?) you will no doubt be as spellbound as I was by this stunningly beautiful black-and-white tale, whose impetus comes from a (true) anectote concerning the philosopher Nietzsche, who witnessed a horse being whipped, which appears to have brought on the breakdown that led to the insanity of his final years.
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67 of 70 people found the following review helpful By deejtarr on 9 Jun 2012
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
There is no plot outside of the daily grind that a father and daughter go through- attempting to saddle a resistant horse, preparing dinner (boiling spuds) eating dinner (with a touch of salt), listening to the wind, watching the wind and visiting the well. I have always been a fan of Bela Tarr but approached this with trepidation- it seemed almost a parody of his previous work, taking too far the patience of the audience... I could not have been more wrong.

Once again Vig's music is phenomenal- the grinding, aching, maddening repetition of a single motif you could listen to forever- even more grinding and maddening than Valuska or Oreg (from Werkmeister Harmonies). The long shots are still there but now without the giant whales and hospital raids to give them a gripping, visceral force- instead, this is cinema pared right down to the bone. There is only the long shot of the daily task. And still it manages to be utterly mesmerising... Kelemen (the cinematographer) is a large part of this, as is the wind-- but mostly it is the mental directions you get pulled in, the world you are given time to occupy and explore, questions ask and secrets reveal.

It is Tarr's last film- his most experimental, his most bleak... and, I truly believe, one of the greatest films of all time,
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Format: DVD
The Hungarian filmmaker Bela Tarr's last film `The Turin horse' is based on a story of how the German philosopher Freidrich Nietzsche witnessed a cart driver beating a horse, and threw himself in front of the animal to stop the beating. According to legend, this event signaled the onset of a mental breakdown from which Nietzsche never recovered.

Set in the 19th Century, in a remote and unknown place lives a man, his daughter and their horse. The story is based on the last days of the horse, old and weary and physically exhausted as his owner. Theirs is a harsh and unforgiving existence, living on nothing more than water and boiled potatoes, and the occasional glass of plum brandy. The horse refuses to eat or work, which threatens its owner's livelihood.

`The Turin horse' is pared down to the minimum, individual scenes are shot in great length. The rigours of life are shown in all its isolated detail, little happens, little is said, little can be done. Its difficult to look beyond this, which i think is what Tarr was trying to evoke. The trouble is that its an incredibly difficult proposition for anyone to experience it, its not even a depressing film but the lack of anything of interest other than this empty existence and the windswept landscape is hard to sustain. Tarr shows you the arduousness of their life and what such an existence was like, as stirring as this daily routine is it will test your patience. There is only so much poetry that can be drawn from the emptiness and the struggle of survival, perhaps Nietzsche's mental breakdown was no surprise?

What does lift this film is the exquisite black and white photography, the best i've seen since Michael Haneke's `White Ribbon'.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Iris on 26 Feb 2013
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
This is the strangest film I've ever watched. It's in black and white, virtually no speaking (sub-titled). Very atmospheric. It's a long film and the climax is so slow in arriving that it keeps you wondering where it's going for the duration of the film. I must admit I did find it challenging to stick at but I was in the mood to watch it and I had no interruptions. The haunting thoughts it provoked stayed with me for days afterwards. So many unanswered questions. A very powerful film. You'll either love it or hate it.
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