(Warning if you suffer fromÂ photosensitive epileptic seizures please avoid this film)
My first trip into the mind of Gasper Noe was the movie Irreversible. That being said, it was a very short trip indeed. It was the first time in my life that I had come across a scene in a movie that I just couldn’t handle. The crazy thing is that Argentinian-bornÂ French filmmaker intended for me to have that reaction.Â Enter the Void was rather different experience. For me, the highlight was the opening sequence, but hey I’ve also be diagnosed with attention deficit disorder. Watch it after the jump, let your brain simmer down, then read the Gasper Noe interview. After that, if you’re reading from Atlanta catch the whole movie at the Plaza Theater on Ponce . [Click here for showtimes]
Vice: You have a reputation as being a director who people either love or hate.
Gaspar NoÃ©: Here at Cannes Iâ€™m used to people screaming at my movies. When it didnâ€™t happen withÂ Enter the Void, I thought, â€œThis is weird.â€ I was shocked that nobody was booing or whistling! But then I read the reviews of the movie and some people really hated it and I thought, â€œOh, weâ€™re OK then!â€
Why did you decide to shoot this film in Tokyo?
Gaspar NoÃ©: Because Tokyo is like a huge pinball machine! Itâ€™s both a scary and an extraterrestrial place. I wanted to find a city that looks likeÂ Tron, and nowadays thatâ€™s either Las Vegas or Tokyo. I donâ€™t like Vegasâ€”itâ€™s full of bad whiskey and dirty moneyâ€”so I thought it would be much better to go to a real city, Tokyo. Itâ€™s also a place where people are obsessed by sex.
After the first 20 minutes, the film is seen through the eyes of the main character, who has died and is in the afterlife. Do you believe in reincarnation?
Gaspar NoÃ©: Maybe I believed in God when I was a teenager. Back then I was reading lots of books about near-death experiences and the soul. But now I think life is a one-shot thing. After you have gone, only other people can still enjoy your life. Some people are so afraid of having a meaningless existence that they make themselves think they will have a second chance at life after they die. That is how all these religions work: by claiming there is going to be life after death and that it will be amazingâ€”but only if you behave like a lamb before you die.
A lot of people say your films are pure shock value and that youâ€™re taking the piss out of the audience. What are you actually trying to say with this new film?
Gaspar NoÃ©: Itâ€™s all about trying to establish that the main characterâ€™s own life was not totally meaningless. And itâ€™s also about the experience of one small mammal among millions of mammals. Very frequently what a life boils down to is a single, very traumatizing experience.
This film seems less aggressive than your previous work.
Gaspar NoÃ©: I used to be very crazy. But then I reconsidered my own patterns. The truth is that you can seriously not do a movie on drugs. It takes so much energy to make a movie that you have to be totally in your right mind. Iâ€™ve been very clean lately besides alcohol. The next thing I should stop is vodka. I have problems going to a party and not drinking one glass after another after anotherâ€¦