Tuesday, November 13, 2007

The Bridge

The Bridge is a documentary (sorta) about people committing suicide by jumping off the Golden Gate Bridge.

The director filmed people jumping off the bridge to their deaths, then interviewed the families of the dead without their knowing that he had footage of them killing themselves. Thus the film has been rightly criticized as being exploitive.

But how is it as a film?


It's slow with a lot of gratuitous filler. If you cut together all the footage of slow pans across the water and the bay and, it'd probably comprise 1/2 an hour. If you cut to the chase, as it were, you'd get a decent 1/2 hour film.

Other than the one guy who survived the fall, most of the recollections of the friends and relatives of the dead are not that revealing. Most either talk of how messed up the person was (insanity, drugs, etc.) or how often they talked about killing themselves before they really did it. The one guy who lived is sorta gripping, because - well, he tried and failed to kill himself, and is somewhat redeemed by the event. The one other observation of note was one of the last things said in the film where a guy relates how much the suicide of his friend hurt him, and the promise that if they ever met again (in the afterlife), he'd give him hell about the pain it caused him.

The jumps themselves are riveting. You want to leap through the screen and catch them. Something inside knows the finality and reality of what's on the screen.

Overall, not worth your time. If you want to experience a couple of the jumps, watch the start of the movie until it happens the first time, then watch the last chapter for the most dramatic one. But, be warned, it's not gonna make you feel anything other than loss and sadness.

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