Reviews Gunda the domesticated animals in Gunda star Taken from farm to fable, the domesticated animals in “Gunda” star not as commodified flesh for human consumption but autonomous entities with inner lives.
The latest medium-pushing documentary from Russian director Viktor Kossakovsky is bare in its aesthetic dogma—there’s no music, no title cards, and no people in sight—and flawless with its observational truth. “Gunda” dispenses with all explanations and emotional scheming tactics for a thoroughly pictorial experience.
This non-fiction rarity’s only soundtrack features an ambience choir of birds chirping and bugs buzzing.
Gunda, an expressive female pig, has just given birth to a litter of impossibly adorable piglets at a Norwegian farmstead. Their high-pitch squeals, as they all fight to feed at once, announce their first bonding session with mom and each other.
From the moment we are invited into the hay-laden abode, our visual contact with her and her young is always up-close. Shot with natural light and a chiaroscuro sensibility, the black-and-white frames play with shadows and silhouettes.
With the camera close to the ground and moving swiftly about the open spaces, Kossakovsky and his co-cinematographer Egil Haaskjold Larsen prioritize the animals’ vantage point.
Their visual language forces the viewer to experience the world at their eye level and not from a position of dominance.
There’s a miraculous blend of craft and implicit cooperation in the astounding close proximity with which they immortalized all their non-verbal subjects—including an audacious one-legged chicken.
As the small flock of chickens survey a terrain steep in vegetation they appear to be explorers
in a newfound land or astronauts on a foreign planet entering the unknown.
There’s a sense of discovery in the way the hesitant winged friends roam around for
what seems to be their first time out of a cage.
Kossakovsky lets us into their secret lives; we are guests who get to wonder in their
engagement with a freedom so often denied to them.
On the rare occasion of a wide shot, we witness Gunda’s domain or that of the supporting cast.
This is of special relevance in an epic scene of cattle running without restraint, or as we see
the energetic, ดูหนังออนไลน์ juvenile hogs chasing after their mother. Time has passed and they are much
bigger but just as playful. Each segment runs its course leisurely, substituting a zoology research with a reflective study.