It’s been a while since I’ve seen a film that made me recall past relationships and journeys in my life.. I would liken it to a cross between the French film “Amelie” and “500 Days of Summer”. This Norwergian film centers on a main female character, “Julie”, and her self-discovery through her relationships and all the highs and lows in between.
There are several techniques I love that Joachim Trier uses in this film. Firstly, I love how he spliced the screenplay into chapters. It’s almost as if I’m reading a book based on a true story. It keeps me engaged and creates a good storyline structure to follow. Secondly, I love the use of a narrator that comes in and out through voiceovers. It’s a quirky, engaging, and clever way of giving exposition to the scene. I mean, I ALWAYS love me some voiceovers, obviously. Third, I love the subtle visual techniques he does for key scenes that indicate some transition in her mind. This is why I love cinema. The way you can play with elements in order to convey certain emotions, not needing any words, is so beautiful to me. Lastly, I’m a sucker for films with a great playlist and this one I definitely enjoyed.
But going a bit deeper, I personally enjoyed the narrative and the screenplay itself because she honestly reminded me of myself. I think everyone, at some point, would feel like they’re the worst person in the world when you’ve hurt somebody, especially when you realize it was all because of your self-centeredness. But I think this film just shows you that some things in life just have to happen and you aren’t necessarily to blame if you have to let go of some people along the way. Julie reminded me of myself and how I used to be in the relationships I had – erratic, hot then cold, and indecisive. I think it’s the Sagittarius in me that just can’t stay still, especially when things get dull or when I feel like I’m not giving enough time to my craft. It’s always been a problem for me to settle down until now because I’ve always prioritized my happiness and my goals in life. And because of that, I’ve had to let go of some relationships I felt were not aligning anymore with what I wanted or needed. Some people, maybe those of my past, would have said I was being selfish and narcissistic, but I simply just wanted more out of life. And though it has made me really feel like the worst person in the world sometimes, I believe this film is showing me otherwise.
I find that if you prioritize yourself, your happiness, and what you want, then you shouldn’t blame yourself if some things in life just don’t align anymore. Of course, there is a very vague threshold to that, due to the fact that every relationship has its own complexities. But I’ve learned that if you’re in place of unhappiness, then it’s okay if you need change. Sometimes you just need to work on yourself first. There’s a certain quote that stuck with me before and it was something along the lines of “You can never make somebody else happy if you aren’t even happy with yourself in the first place”. It’s okay to need what you need. And you can trust that other people will understand along the way.
This was a nice one to reflect on and though it’s bittersweet, I highly recommend this. Onto the next new one!