|Picture this: a guy who knows what' wrong and sets it right. He takes
the steering wheel from a speed maniac and he forces somebody who lets his
dog shit onto the pavement with his face smack into the excrements. He harangues
a man who watches child porn and takes his money. This guy who knows what's
wrong and how to set it right, is Mux. He is not a strong man and he seems
rather likeable, at first sight. His powers: The wrongdoer's knowledge that
he or she is wrong, a mighty revolver, the power of surprise and sheer chuzpah.
What helps is that Mux is, in a way, what people expect and what they know
they deserve when they commit a crime, petty or not.
Mux writes a manifest and he hires unemployed Gerd as a deputy whose main
job is cinematography: filming Mux in action. We see this action, the pictures
Gerd takes and other pictures, the pictures of the movie, from a non-diegetic
position. This indecisiveness - introducing a diegetic camera on the one
hand, adding a second one on the other - is rather emblematic of the film.
We do not really know what Mux is up to, and we don't know what this film
wants, either. This, the director and the author (who is identical with the
actor playing Mux) say, is exactly the point. You don't know what exactly
to make of Mux. An average enough guy who feels the disillusionment about
daily life and about human bevavior in our society we feel. He just draws
rather extreme conclusions, taking the position of the law, supplementing
it by putting himself in its place.
This act of supplementation, not necessarily in the maxims underlying his
actions, just as an act, is, of course, exactly a subversion of the law.
He can never be right enough in order to be right in what he does. That's
the paradox of his actions and that's it, basically. That's what Mux is up
to and that's what this film is about. "Mux", the film, however, goes on
for ninety minutes, hugely outrunning its short film premise. The rest, then,
is illustration, redundancy, character development, or simply beside the
point. The introduction, for example, of a woman, Kira, whom Mux wants to
but cannot love is a rather sorry way of explaining what a sorry man Mux
is. His character's pathology is simply and even annoyingly reformulated
in his erotic impotence.
What turns out to be more interesting is a longish scene showing Mux karaoke
singing in a seedy bar, a scene that seems to aim at giving the protagonist
a more human side. This singing among the people you expect in such a drab
location is, however, strangely touching in a way that exceeds the filmmakers'
obvious intentions. This is a very sad moment and even more moving as it
happens in, narratively speaking, a scene almost completely beside the point
of this overly didactic film. And it does not help at all that the author
and director - in the press notes - make a didactical point of not having
clearly defined didactical points. This is a concept movie, which is best
at the exact moments when it loses sight of its concept.
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