Although Marc Forster has directed many movies we’ve all seen, from “Finding Neverland” to the licensed to kill blockbuster “Quantum of Solace,” he’s resisted becoming an auteur -- a filmmaker who doesn't let us forget that he’s behind the camera -- a la Stanley Kubrick, Kevin Smith and others. In his latest offering, Forster is breaking several of his own rules, including taking command of the lens from both sides.
“[While filming ‘Solace’] I realized that the only time I had for me, which was quiet and calm, was on an airplane,” Forster explained of his mind-blowingly trippy new short. It's something that has to be seen to be believed, and you can check it out over at the website for Swiss International Air Lines. “It was the only moment where I could reflect and be myself… there’s a nice symbolism in the meaning of journey.”
With that in mind, Forster set out to make his most personal film yet. Using butterflies, pyramids, outer space and things that we could never describe, the director gives us a two and half minute glimpse inside his head.
“This is very personal -- and at first, I was thinking ‘Should I do this?’” Forster explained, laughing. The director also narrates and stars in “LX Forty,” his first commercial -- as in advertisement -- effort. “You know what? It’s interesting to experiment with personal expression like that, and put yourself out there.”
Although he’s an incredibly successful filmmaker, Forster admitted to being really nervous when he agreed to make the short film for Swiss Air. Watching it, it’s pretty obvious that he got over the fear. The results are impressive.
“That beginning part -- when I speak that I stayed under the covers for many days -- it was a time in my life where I didn’t get a chance to make movies. I was thinking ‘Why does nobody believe in me?’” Forster recalled of the tender admission that begins his trippy film. “That was part of the journey. And then, as [my career] went on and I became more successful, [I continued] hitting walls.”
Make no bones about it however: the montage-based piece is indeed a commercial. It’s just that as your head swims in all of the visuals, you have no idea what the hell it’s advertising until the very end.
“That, I thought, was an interesting thing -- the selling becomes part of it,” Forster said of the conditions under which he took the gig. “But it is not the main focus of it.”
What do you think of Forster’s intensely personal, trippy film? Should he set out to make a full-length movie with such visuals and concepts in mind?