The Addiction * Abel Ferrara (1995)

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When my eye fell on a small row with Ferrara films at my DVD rental I was not sure if I already saw “The Addiction”. If I did, it must have been quite a while, since I did not recognise the often sampled opening scene. I heard a lot of good about the film, but I am not surprised by the 6.3 on IMdB. I find the film wholly unconvincing myself. First there is the extraordinary dull scene in which Kathleen (Lily Taylor) receives her addiction. Then follows a whole film with semi-intellectual contemplations on evil. Kathleen is a philosophy student and Ferrara apparently tried to make a shocking, but intellectually-looking film combining visual- and soundsamples of war-crimes and philosophers explaining their darkest thoughts. These philosophical ramblings sound like they were taken out of some quotations-book rather than musings of learned persons. Besides, I doubt a ‘real philosopher’ would throw names alternating every word, trying to name four philosophers in every sentence. I find the atmosphere unconvincing too. The ‘shocking scene’ at Kathleen’s party is roundout laughable. Did I expect too much? Have I grown numb to shockeffects or is it simply so that Ferrara’s style simply does not work for me?

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