Screened as part of NZIFF 2008

The Man from London 2007

A Londoni férfi

Directed by Béla Tarr

Cult director Béla Tarr's bizarre, ominous adaptation of a Simenon detective novel unfolds in amazingly choreographed mobile camera sequences. "Mesmeric." — The Guardian

France / Germany / Hungary In English and French with English subtitles
135 minutes 35mm / B&W


Co-director, Editor

Ágnes Hranitzky


László Krasznahorkai
Béla Tarr. Based on the novel by Georges Simenon


Fred Kelemen


Mihály Víg


Miroslav Krobot
Tilda Swinton
Erika Bók
János Derzsi
Ági Szirtes
István Lénárt


Cannes (In Competition), Toronto, New York, Vancouver 2007


A new film from Béla Tarr (Satantango, Werckmeister Harmonies), Hungarian master of the slow-burning sequence shot, is always an event. The Man from London, shot in photogenically ramshackle Corsica, is adapted from a Georges Simenon novel, so it's nominally a detective film. But although it contains some astonishing film noir photography, Tarr's magisterial long-take style transcended genre long ago. The story, involving a port signalman who witnesses a murder and makes off with the loot, unfolds obliquely through a series of precisely crafted mobile shots that follow ordinary actions at length, while more substantial plot developments may be happening off-screen or deep in the background. It's an atypical way of telling a story, but absolutely compelling if you surrender to the stunning photography, hypnotic camera movement and the mournful score that emerges from and recedes into the ambient drone of the port town. — AL