Watch The Sound of Insects
- 1 hr 27 min
The Sound of Insects, a 2009 film directed by Swiss-Canadian filmmaker Peter Mettler, is a mesmerizing exploration of solitude and death. The movie is based on the diary of an anonymous man who, in 2001, committed suicide in the wilderness of the Swiss Jura Mountains. The man records his final thoughts and impressions, as well as his gradual descent into a state of profound isolation and detachment. The film is a poetic meditation on the ephemeral nature of existence, the human need for connection and meaning, and the mysterious, ever-present sound of nature. The Sound of Insects is a daring and experimental film, one that invites the audience to challenge their preconceptions about narrative and cinema. The movie consists of a single voice-over track, which reads the man's diary entries over a series of evocative and impressionistic images. The images are a mixture of footage shot by Mettler himself, as well as found footage and archive material. The director's camera is always on the move, capturing the changing light and landscapes of the Jura Mountains, as well as the strange and beautiful bugs that inhabit this remote region. Peter Mettler's approach to sound design is both subtle and masterful. The title of the film is a reference to the man's obsession with the sound of insects, which he hears constantly in his final days. The sound of crickets, flies, and other insects is a constant presence in the movie, providing a hypnotic and unsettling background to the man's musings. The sound design also makes use of other natural and man-made sounds, including rushing water, rustling leaves, and distant trains. The result is a film that immerses the audience in a fully-realized sensory environment, one that echoes the man's own heightened state of awareness. While The Sound of Insects is a challenging and unconventional movie, it is also a deeply emotional and thought-provoking work. The diary entries reveal the man's desperation and loneliness, as well as his occasional moments of transcendence and wonder. The man's final days are haunted by memories of his past, particularly his failed relationships and his inability to connect with others. He also reflects on the meaning of life and death, and the possibility of finding redemption in the wilderness. The film's final image is a startling and poetic evocation of the man's death. Mettler's camera captures the Jura Mountains as they slowly morph into a black-and-white photograph. The photograph, in turn, begins to disintegrate, revealing a dense web of insect life hidden beneath its surface. The image is both a metaphor for the man's own decay and a reminder of the ceaseless cycle of life and death in nature. In conclusion, The Sound of Insects is an unforgettable cinematic experience, one that defies easy categorization. It is a film that demands patience and attention, but also rewards the viewer with moments of startling beauty and insight. Mettler's movie is a masterpiece of sensory cinema, one that uses sound and image to create a haunting and unforgettable portrait of a man's final days.