Leviathan is an observational documentary about the lives of commercial fishermen. Directors Lucien Castaing-Taylor and VÃ©rÃ©na Paravel used handheld cameras that were tied, tethered and strapped to the boat, buoys and passed among the crew to capture the everyday events and details of fishing.
It appears the film’s goal was to portray both the beautiful and grotesque lives of fishermen, while at the same time demonstrating the artful, hypnotic and meditative nature of the ocean. These two goals appear to work in tandem to enlighten the reasons why commercial fishermen may ultimately do the work they do.
Leviathan is a gorgeous art piece that truly captures the battle between man and ocean, depicting in raw, unvarnished footage the lives of fishermen. At the same time, however, the same thing that makes it beautiful is what makes it grotesque and difficult to watch. No part of the fishing process is hidden from view or censored to make the audience feel more at ease. Caution should be taken by the squeamish.
Is Leviathan Essential TIFF Viewing?
As the film dances the border between observational documentary and experimental film, it is definitely not essential viewing for everyone. Fans of both the observational doc and experimental genres will want to catch this on a big screen during the fest, since that’s the best and most potent way to experience it.
Leviathan Screening Times
- Wednesday, September 12 at TIFF Bell Lightbox 3 at 7:00 PM, and
- Friday, September 14 at TIFF Bell Lightbox 4 at 3:30 PM
More About This Movie
Leviathan Production Gallery
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