Holy Motors (2012)


Today you have nine appointments; you need to get ready for your first we will be arriving shortly. There is not much of a right or wrong to the understanding of Leos Carax’s Holy Motors (2012). When considering this film the only thing that truly makes sense is that the film has a philosophical meaning to it.

From the opening scene the viewer is completely lost; Carax himself wakes up in a bed, approaches a wall covered in trees and minstrelsy grows a key from his finger to open this wall. Once the wall is opened we see Carax in a cinema watching his own film Holy Motors and we are introduced to the main character Monsieur Oscar (Denis Lavant), who lives his life riding around in a limo creating different personas for each different appointment. Each appointment is a new situation for Oscar to simply confuse us even more through his bizarre actions. By the end of the film you are unsure how he is even alive or if he is alive due to the fact that he dies multiple times but just stands back up as if he is immune to death.

Throughout we contrast two different options; these options are theater performer or movie actor. We see signs that Oscar enjoys being in front of a camera when he is in the cemetery dressed as a troll and is performing for the photographer. Though in the end you are left to believe that Oscar is simply a stage performer; due to the constant change of costume and the fact that he cannot die.

The philosophical idea is seen in this film through the aspect that nothing is every clearly stated as true or false. In the end we do not know what exactly Oscar’s job is or if he has any sort of family. All we know is he rides around all day long in this limo living different personas for no apparent reason. We are simply left to debate whether or not he was an actor or not and if so what he acted for.

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