Film Review – Timecode by Mike Figgis

Directed by Mike Figgis, Timecode is an experimental film that is set in the location of a film production company office in Los Angeles. It involves several groups of people who interact with each other during the preparation of the shooting of a new movie.

The dialogue is mostly improvised and the screen is divided into four corners, where each corner is telling a different story.

Four cameramen filmed four continuous 90 minute takes and by varying the volume of each of the four stories, Figgis successfully manipulates the way in which the audience views the film. By increasing the volume of one of the stories, our attention is automatically drawn to that particular corner.

At first the four stories are difficult to follow, but the viewers eventually adapt to this different way of viewing media and allow the volume of the stories to guide them. Figgis is experimenting with the ways in which our attention can be manipulated by media and shows that we are able to adapt to new styles of storytelling.

Although the actors can be admired for their ability to improvise for so long in the film, the quality of the acting inevitably suffered. And although Figgis is successful in using sound as a guiding tool for the viewers attention, it took me a long time to effectively follow the separate stories. However, the experimental style of the film has such an inspirational effect that the audience’s concept of storytelling is certainly broadened .


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