Tuesday, August 16, 2022

Movie Review: SPOOR -- Amazon Prime Video


 Spoor was quite good. A slooooow burn and not the horror movie i expected it to be. 

The heroine is definitely a wise woman stereotype but the depiction works. The bad patriarchy guys also work well too. So it didn't come off as a screedy polemic. 

The story takes place in Eastern Europe. Our heroine is an older woman who loves animals. We're dealing with patriarchy here. In fact there's a young orthodox priest who is a nasty piece of work. He says stuff about animals that many-but-not-all Christians would have problems with. Women are also treated like crap. Our heroine has a connection with nature, the stars, etc and she lives near hunters, poachers, and a cruel research lab on the outskirts of the village. She's surrounded by men who basically think anything weaker than an adult man pretty much can be treated any kind a way  - the law be damned. Her best friends are her animals, but the priest says it's a sin to call animals friends, to say animals have souls, and that burying animals is a sin of pride. 

Well, suddenly heroine's pet dogs disappear, strange deaths keep happening, and deer start getting attitude. Heroine is already battling ageism, patriarchy, and a world that belittles and oppresses everything that is weak. The only mercy in this town is patronising the weak. The patronizing is no joke. Sadistic lab guy is being horrible to a girl in town and hunting season is on. Heroine is always showing up at dead bodies and animal tracks are near the corpses of murdered hunters. I liked this movie

Still...there were things that were problematic for me. 

First: the patriarchy was represented and upheld by a christian priest. Of course, this often happens in real life but just because christendom does patriarchy and nature cruelty badly doesn't mean that the Bible affirms that kind of patriarchal cruelty. But alas, the history of Christendom does have a lot of cruelty to women, animals, the weak, etc. So that depiction was bothersome, but somewhat fair.

 Second: the pantheism and panentheism was a bit much for my Christian soul. Heroine is a true astrologer, more so than the typical stuff one sees in newspapers or hear from friends. The worship of the star? The stars ruling and controlling our fate. Heroine could love nature without going so far. But heck, it's not my movie. So why argue? 

Yes, why argue? Especially because i agree with so much of the socio-emotional issues in the movie. Thirdly: the ending. Again, problematic. A murderer gets away scotfree and i was happy about it. yeah, i know. My heart was conflicted. What can i say? I agreed with the filmmaker that the patriarchy had to be outwitted. Animals, the weak, and women were being treated so bad. I know that as a good Christian there are philosophies, story constructs, and story resolutions I'm supposed to dislike. But, the heart is the heart. I'm not saying it's wholly unredeemed aspects of my heart that made me like this movie. I think the redemmed and holy part of me also liked it. But these are stories and characters that American Christians don't deal with. We're kinda trained off certain things. For instance, how many evangelicals become anthropologists or feminist critics or climate activists? It is what it is. I so wish American Christian filmmakers would make movies like Spoor. But American Christian filmmakers rarely deal with matters of soul, animals, evil patriarchy. They deal with a totally different other set of americanized issues. Nothing spiritual generally. Anyways. Spoor. AmazonPrimeVideo. A slow movie but it really touched me.

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