The Sadness – 2021 – Violence deluxe

The Sadness

The Sadness is a horror film that has been much debated on social media recently. I have seen it claimed to be the best horror movie ever by some people. At the same time, other seem to think that it’s the worst thing that happened to horror movies in ages. Of course, I couldn’t get away from the urge to see it for myself av make up my own mind about it. Let’s see if I can sort out the thoughts about it.

Covid Pandemic

There’s no doubt in my mind that The Sadness is made with the Covid Pandemic as a base for the story. I guess we all can relate to that in some way or another at the time that I write this. And, of course, even further in the future. The current pandemic will go down in history as one of the worst catastrophes in modern times. But there are really only some minor references to it in the movies. There is a virus but it’s called something completely different. The authorities claim that the effects of it are nothing more that a strong cold. Does that ring a bell? There are scientists claiming the absolute opposite though. That the virus is the beginning of the end more or less. I can’t remember exactly how they phrase it. But that is essentially it.

Of course, we realized quite early in the movie that the effect will be something special. We can also figure this out by that there wouldn’t be a so-talked-about movie otherwise. One thing I can’t figure out though is the title. I don’t see any reason for it to be called The Sadness. Something might have been lost in the translation from the original titled stated by IMDB – Ku Bei. I did a search for it on google translate but the closest thing I would come up with was “Digging North”. That doesn’t make any sense with the plot in mind and not with the English title either. But maybe someone out there knows a little bit more? Please enlighten the rest of us in the comments below.

The Pace Changes

In either case, it starts out slow enough. There is this couple that kinda struggles to make a living. They are quite different from each other. I think she works in some kind of office and he might be a model or something like that. It’s really not important. What’s important is what happens next. He starts to see weird sights where people are covered in blood. This escalated and she sees it too on the way to work. Of course, we, as the audience, realize that there is more to come.

But yet, I was kinda surprised about the quick turn when The Sadness changes its pace. There are a lot of action sequences and the violence is violent and perverse. There’s really no way to protect oneself from it. And I mean that from the character’s point of view really. They’re in this situation and there’s no way out of it.

A Lot of the gory scenes are shown on camera but a couple of the most perverted scenes are not shown to us, they’re off-camera. I think that is a good move. There are very few things that can be portrayed in a more gruesome matter than your own imagination. That’s how I see it. But there is a lot of very stylish violence and blood throughout the film. It looks very good in my mind. It’s not really scary but there’s a creepy feel to it. And I have seldom seen blood-showered scenes that look o beautiful.

The Plot?

The Sadness has gotten criticism that there’s no real plot. That there are only gory scenes without anything solid holding it together storywise. Well, that might be so. I don’t think the story is very layered and the main focus for me was the style, not the plot. I guess you could look at it as one day in the lead characters’ life. Everything goes south and it’s very very dark. Do we have anything to live for if we can’t give in to our perverted lusts? Is there anything else in the universe than nihilism?

I liked it more than I disliked it though. It’s a strange feeling to get bored from a movie with so much emotion and action going on but there’s that kind of dualism to it. I don’t regret that I saw The Sadness. I rather liked it and hope that I will get to know more thoughts and theories about it in the future.

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Tommy Snöberg Söderberg

Autodidact film scholar and music-loving thinker who reads the occasional book.

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