Some notes and dialogue on first watching.
Gorbier sits in the green room in the basement.
Paul Maisonneuve hold a photo to Gorbier.
“Do you know who that is?”
Um, isn’t it usual to identify the person?
Back or rather forward to the beginning:
Back to the plot. Better go listen to it. I have to make an effort since I never listened to it (the plot) in the first place. I would normally but Witnesses is just so nebulous in terms of plot.
So we are finally getting somewhere in the plot.
Hey, tense music plays so even more things must be a-happening. Soon!
A lupine appearance.
Paul Maisonneuve to Gorbier’s son:
“There is one empty chair”
“Sit on it, don’t move, ten feet away, OK?”
“You can get up any time you want..”
Gorbier to Paul Maisonneve:
“She came to me in severe psychogenic pain”
“She knows who I am, a monster..”
“But a monster who has a common foe..”
“She wanted to know-who is Paul Maisonneuve?”
“Who is Paul Maisonneuve?”!
They really said that.
Still back to the plot and atmospheric music and beautifully painted scenes. Witnesses is cool to look at. And may nearly be cool to watch.
Sandra is on a mission. Go Sandra..
So. Lots of dolls.
So now both Sandra and suave Paul Maisoneuvve are both up to scratch on the plot-line too.
Me, I’m just worried about the Detective’s daughter.
Lovely to how we see twinkling blocks of offices.
So Paul is on a roll.
Plus Sandra reads from one of those officially mad notebooks.
Back to the beach. And the half-submerged object.
Ah, I know what that object is now.
Yes. Back to the plot.
There was a touch of a reference to the film Don’t Look Now then.
I forgot who was at risk from murdering who.
Finally. Sandra takes off those damn high heels.
I hadn’t wanted to say anything.
So it was a good twist ending.
Kerblamm. Kerblamm. Cool.
One of the protagonists falls over on the beach. I am liking Witnesses more and more.
So where the hell is Paul?
But look out ladies.
C’mon Paul, any time soon would be good to make your dramatic appearance.
Sandra’s gun clicks.
They are in some place with slag heaps of coal now. Sandra is having to think hard about how best to..I cannot say.
Now they are in a huge tunnel.
Someone is walking down the tunnel. which is all lit in orange light.
This is not good. Not good at all.
This is supremely sinister.
Back to Gorbier. He really only does have that one chair.
So odd things are going on.
Back to the beach.
Paul has arrived, He stands tall on the tip of the sands.
Things are getting tense.
So this is sad.
(I have a feeling about Sandra and Laura’s background-or it could be Gorbier)
This is all conjecture of course.
Violins have been playing for a while now.
Sandra to Paul:
“Was it your idea to use the wolf?”!
OK I get it now. ( I thought it was deep at first)
Sandra to Paul:
“She’s not stopping you living..”
“But you’re stopping her dying..
We watch the streets of Normandy in real time.
Cheerful , sort of atmospheric music ensues.
Ah, Paul Maisoneuvve smiled then.
Paul looks back at Sandra as he walks away.
She looks back at him as she walks away.
That is it.
So Witnesses shaped itself together in this episode for me. If one can shape. OK shaped up and shipped out. That’s better. shipped out as in ended I guess. Well it was the last episode. Things really had to come together.
I had already decided to carry on upon hearing that there were only six episodes. I’m not sure, at that time anyway ( episode four I think) that I would have carried on watching Witnesses if there were ten episodes.
I had already questioned myself if I would have carried on watching witnesses if it wasn’t in French? Or set in France. Normandy. With the lovely over flying shots of sweeping, fairly bare, scenery.
The answer is probably not. Being in French is a bit cool. I have to admit. Plus I love differently painted scenery.
I did enjoy Witnesses in the end and thought all the pieces of the puzzle came together well. Maybe even dried out in the rain a little bit. Sharpened up somewhat.
The overall cogency or believability of the drama as a story was ultimately a success. I feel.
Although this increased clarity and general ratcheting up of the pace of the drama: sure was a long time coming.
The watching of Witnesses, with all its wonderful, winsome almost, bleakness: was a dreamy spaced out experience.
For me the beautifully painted, lit and shadowed scenes were the best bits of Witnesses. The shots of the beach, at one point the stones are all black. We do not know if this is the light or the colour of the stones.
As for the characters and story lines and even the plot: I mostly felt these aspects to be strangely un-involving. Of the viewer that is.
In retrospect I wonder if we just did not have enough background to the characters. Although we do find out their back-stories. In several cases this detail did not necessarily connect with the characters becoming fully fledged as that person on screen. For me anyway.
Or maybe this is just what happens when there’s a lot of staring. Silent staring. Coupled with that odd, asynchronous feeling to the dramatic atmosphere. Like something fizzled out and went flat.
At the same time the drama feels wobbly, like you’re really on board. A boat that it. The strange and deadening effect on some dramas: of the hand-held camera effect. Which for me, only really came together as a filming effect: right at the very end.
I suppose this (very ordinariness) is meant to be the point. The banality of evil and all that.
“Something banal” was even being searched for at one point. By Sandra. As a clue.
But banal was over there in the corner, (metaphorically) yawning. ‘Cause even the banal had got bored.