The Platform [2019] ★★

I may be swimming against the current here, but I didn’t fully appreciate Netflix’s surreal film “The Platform”. It’s ambitious and has some memorable passages, but I still could’t enjoy it. At least I can start on a positive note: the story is unlike anything you’ve seen before. Two inmates wake up in a mysterious place where other people occupy various levels with a descending platform containing food in the middle. It’s a fight for survival, and it is very obvious right from the start that this is a metaphor for real life. The set-up is intriguing, to be sure, but I found the second half to be an endurance test. I identified so closely with these characters’ fight for survival at first as if I was trapped in a nightmare. Then at some point, all I wanted was to wake up. In other words, I couldn’t wait for the film to be over. Director Galder Gaztelu-Urrutia’s aim is to provoke conversation, to engage moviegoers so they will discuss and debate the content of his unusual film. But I can only be honest in describing my reaction to this film: It didn’t pull me in enough and I probably won’t find myself thinking about it for days to come.

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