Transient love seems to be a recurring theme here at Sundance. After watching a young couple attempt to weather a long-distance relationship in Like Crazy, I happened upon another film with a similar theme.
HERE is the second film in a row I’ve seen that features another love-starved couple, albeit maturer, trying to attempt an unsettled relationship. A scruffy-looking Ben Foster stars as Will, a nomadic American cartographer with an affinity for satellite-mapping the landscape. His latest project brings him to Armenia where he meets Gadarine, an exotic brunette played by Lubna Azabal. She just happens to be a landscape art photographer that piques the interest of Will. Eventually a relationship blossoms as they travel together exploring new territory, metaphorically and literally.
The film is basically a gorgeously shot film of the vast panoramic vistas of Armenia by cinematographer Lol Crawley. Writer/Director Braden King infuses his film with long, introspective moments of mountainous terrain. This is probably to emphasize the idea of what Will sees everyday as part of his work, but can no longer appreciate its beauty. The extended pan shots create a quiet stillness, but in a cinematic context, can be very slow.
At a screening I attended, a disbursement of audience members gave up on the film and departed. For me, I was content in sitting in a dark theater catching up on my rest and viewing the green, pastoral mountains that were not covered in snow.