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also known as La academia de las musas

The Academy of Muses2015

  • 3.5
A university professor teaches a class on muses in art and literature as a means of romancing his female students in this breathtaking new film from Jose Luis Guerin, director of the critically-acclaimed IN THE CITY OF SYLVIA.

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3 members like this review

4.5-5_sometimes i loved it_sometimes it got a bit tiresome_no idea why any of the women would want him for a lover_that's a mystery_but the words are a great trip_a lot of windows & history_a lot of the film uses reflections in glass_just light or the passing scene_really poetic & magic sometimes_almost as if they are talking beyond themselves_moving out of their time and space

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top reviewer

Member Reviews (7)

117475.small
top reviewer

4.5-5_sometimes i loved it_sometimes it got a bit tiresome_no idea why any of the women would want him for a lover_that's a mystery_but the words are a great trip_a lot of windows & history_a lot of the film uses reflections in glass_just light or the passing scene_really poetic & magic sometimes_almost as if they are talking beyond themselves_moving out of their time and space

3 members like this review

No Sapho here... only retrograde musing about the woman as muse. Really? Seriously?

2 members like this review
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3.5 - Even if this is a critique of the sexism of the central character, the power dynamics of the classroom and the deeply troubling double standards within his marriage are not questioned. Yet the film does have multiple voices and often undermines the thesis of the professor, no more so in the sequence in Sardinia that begins around the 39th minute and that, really, the prof never recovers from. Check out what the camera shows and who really functions as the muse(s) and their object in this sequence.

What the philologist professor preached as gospel need not be the film's only intended message; it is the professor's message. Any disagreement with the professor is not a disagreement with the film. The film itself is not pedantic, as others have commented — the characters are. The film speaks in metanarratives, while the characters speak their narrative; these two should not be mixed up. What the film impressed on me is the danger of rationalizing what should remain poetry. For this reason, I appreciate the film.

To quote Wittgenstein on his thoughts on philosophical inquiry, and the limits of reason:

"What we cannot speak about [because of the limits of philosophy,] we must pass over in silence."

Silence is preferred, but when unbearable, poetry and music take its place.

It’s almost never refreshing to watch emotionally crippled adults play intellectual games with one another, in lieu of a deeper connection, and especially when they only end up exhibiting the half-hearted maneuvers and inverted rigmarole that inevitably set them further away from their intended goal of real intimacy, which pretty much defines the bourgeoisie’s main purpose in any age: to remind us of what is unreal and self-reflexive.

Pretentious. Pedantic. Tedious.

Here's a subject worth discussing over a beer after the movie. Just watch out your female partner has no sharp objects handy. The classical Muse is not a theme a modern feminist is happy with. And it's not clear that the filmmaker is taking the classical side in this argument. I loved the discussion. A rare flick.