In the middle of the Euro 2008 I take time to watch a documentary by talented Latvian director Robert Vinovskis about football, seen from an original angle far away from the banality of the commentators that fill my ears every night, but also far away from the drama of the matches themselves. So for me a perfect timing for a distant, cleverly concepted and interesting view on this wonderfully entertaining and sometimes artistically great performance called football.
Vinovskis has invited a coach, some philosophers, a neuropsychologist and two philologists to sit on the pitch and give us their reflections on the game. These comments are surrounded by observational sequences from the 2006 World championship, where Latvia surprisingly qualified. Scenes from the streets and from the stadium, training sessions, beautifully shot, all is thought of in terms of composition and framing, as well as observations from an amateur game, one of those that I used to go to – when a kid – on a sunday morning.
One of the characters says very rightly that there is nothing as bad as a bad football match… but there is always these snapshots of beauty.
The same can be said about this fine film, it is sometimes repeating itself due to its conceptual construction, but it has its moments of brilliance.
Latvia, 2007, 50 mins.
www.locomotive.lv (only in Latvian, as far as I can see)
www.nfc.lv/resources/File/NKC%20Izdevumi/Katalogs%20ENG%202006.pdf (page 66)