Coming to Terms Screen 2 articles

Coming to Terms

2013

Coming to Terms Poster
  • However stark and somber the film seems, one discerns an underlying bleak wit in the filmmaker’s farewell to a world he no longer recognizes and seems somewhat relieved to depart. As Benning, close in age and cut from the same cloth as his director, dissolves into the landscape near the end, a doubly resonant experience comes to a close in this paean to the American pastoral filmmaking tradition.

  • I found quite a bit more to appreciate on second viewing, mostly pertaining to Jost's use of the landscapes around Butte, Montana, as an objective correlative to the passing away of James Benning's cruel patriarch. With his slow superimpositions and altered color temperatures, Jost turned medium shots of a forest into a sort of alternate calendar, marking a timeframe situated between human transience and the conventional cycles of the seasons.