Burning

Written by Michael Clawson

100/100

Achingly beautiful, mesmerizing and mysterious. I loved both Secret Sunshine and Poetry, but Lee Chang Dong’s latest is next level as it combines the emotional complexity and nuance of those earlier works with a newly astonishing and moving visual elegance that fuels the sense of desire, anger, and longing smoldering throughout. Whether he’s focused on the leaves of trees rustling in the wind – like those on which Mija focuses so intently in Poetry as she seeks inspiration – or sunlight coming through a window and bouncing off a wall – like the ray of sunshine we see shimmering on the ground at the end of Secret Sunshine – Dong’s every shot feels not only intensely purposeful but also entirely spontaneous, as if these things were just miraculously occurring before our eyes. This is one I can’t wait to revisit again and again as its wells of ambiguity grant it an inextinguishable appeal.

Michael Clawson originally posted this review on Letterboxd 12/07/18

View it on Netflix

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