THE MUSIC AND US is a nostalgic nod to cinema’s silent past. Deprived of theatrical performances but using an entrancing original score, the film’s 86 minutes is a personal documentary which reflects on the intricate details of life.
THE MUSIC AND US tracks the relationship between director and filmmaker Carlos Rivero and his ex-girlfriend when they were still together. This intimate documentary follows the pair filming each other on holiday in both Spain and Scotland. The compilation of home footage is a poignant examination of random past sequences in a couple’s life and, in this sense, will strike a chord with many. The film’s score is beautiful and hypnotic, carrying the film through moments which would otherwise risk becoming stagnant.
THE MUSIC AND US is a dream-like filmic memory of a relationship which no longer exists. Its use of long edits and lingering shots encourages us to focus on details within images which we would otherwise not have the chance to explore in such depth. THE MUSIC AND US does well to capture the subtleties of human emotion and day-to-day life. From close-ups of bark on trees to the couple cooking, the film is strongest when depicting the minute – and often discarded – details of life.
With this in mind, it is also worth noting that the film can be too slow. While it gives the viewer a chance to appreciate the detail, THE MUSIC AND US frequently loses its pace and subsequently risks losing the viewer’s attention. A sequence of slow-motion videos shot on a mobile phone is an interesting concept but is too long, similar to much of the film. While THE MUSIC AND US is undeniably an accurate representation of life, love and relationships, sometimes the detail goes too far.