Opening 17 Nov 2016
Writer-director Jim Jarmusch’s films are intelligently constructed and well written, exceptionally acted, paced, and tease audiences to deliberate. His distinctive visual palette goes in predominately two directions, with minor differences: unexpected plot twists, engrossing (Ghost Dog - Der Weg des Samurai 1999), and introverted, existential (The Limits of Control 2009). Paterson falls in the latter category.
One week in the life of three protagonists whose attribute is sameness. Still, what makes each unique? The man, the wife, and a ubiquitous municipality, USA. Low-key, Paterson’s (Driver) bus travels the same route day in, day out. In spite of that, with each loop his experiences are entertaining, enlightening. Patterson’s passion, though, is poetry, which he composes every available possibility. Whereas, Laura (Farahani) is passionate: about her husband, dreams, creativity, and black/white colors. Their love is true; he supports her goals, she advocates his being published. Marvin (Nellie) puts up with and enjoys them both. Civility, history, and past notable locals permeate Paterson, New Jersey. Daily pursuits become poetry in motion: pleasures, tests, and fate intervening.
A quiet film, the cast follow its pacing. Affonso Gonçalves rhythmic editing, and Frederick Elmes’s lyrical cinematography have a waft of melancholy. Paterson is, to some extent, allegorical in its projecting how ephemeral time is. (Marinell Haegelin)