Tuesday, 14 December 2010

Review - The tenant

Fig 1. The Tenant

Director: Roman Polanski

Starring: Roman Polanski as Trelkovski

             Isabelle Adjani as Stella

             Melvyn Douglas as Monsieur Zy

Fig 2. The Tenant Still

From the beginning of the film, Polanski's character, Trelkovski is boundering as an outsider from the moment they meet him. The Accent from his polish background and his need for a identification card constantly make the neighbours suspicious of him. From this point on the audience notices that the neighbours are constantly onto him and no matter how much he tried to be kind to them, he can't seem to do anything right. They constantly complain about the noise he's apparently making, Vincent Canby also notices this, ' Trelkovsky exists. He inhabits his own body, but it's as if he had no lease on it, as if at any moment he could be dispossessed for having listened to the radio in his head after 10 P.M.' (Canby, 1976).
'The message: Living alone, while initially liberating and bohemian, usually ends in your becoming That Weird Guy Down the Hall Who Does Creepy Drag. The only solution is to throw yourself out the window.
If you fail the first time, repeat.' (Savage, 2007)

This film has many twists and turns of the main character, turning him from a regular guy to the suicidal drag man. As the film goes on your pulled into the madness of the film, questioning what is wrong and what is right. For example, the toilet room, where every night a new person stands there motionless either starring out of the window or just at the wall. the strogest part of this sequence is when Trelkovski visits the toilet room and looks out of the window and see's himself looking right back. This creates an impact of eerieness and dread towards the character. This also strongly links to the ending.
Fig 3 The Tenant Still 2

When it comes to the end, theres a question that raises up, that question is, ' is the film going through a whole loop'. This being of course the result of seeing Trelkovski in the hospital bed visited by his flashback of whenhe visited Simone. There's a big sense of the neighbours finally turned Trelkovski into Simone after all, even though he tried everything to get free.

Illustration bibliography

Fig 1, The Tenant Poster, 1976, [photography], http://horror.mdv.se/1976%20-%20Tenant,%20The%20(DVD).jpg, 12/12/2010.

Fig 2. The Tenant still, 1976, [photography], http://www.cinemaretro.com/uploads/thetenant.jpg, 12/12/2010.

Fig 3. The Tenant Still 2, 1976, [photography], http://1.bp.blogspot.com/_4hO-jYh7Rj0/SdLon3UJ5MI/AAAAAAAAA6o/XMPqZyIMPbs/s400/tenant.jpg, 12/12/2010

Canby, V, (1976), The Tenant (1976), In The New York Times, [Online], http://movies.nytimes.com/movie/review?res=9B06E3DD143FE334BC4951DFB066838D669EDE.

Savage, D, 2007, A POLANSKI GUIDE TO URBAN LIVING, Cinema Retro, http://www.cinemaretro.com/index.php?serendipity%5Baction%5D=search&serendipity%5BsearchTerm%5D=chills

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