“TÁR” creates a symphony of sight and sound

“TÁR” is the new Todd Field film about fictional composer Lydia Tár, and her downward spiral into obscurity. Released in early October, the film premiered to widespread critical acclaim, as well as a very positive audience reception. Touching on topics like cancel culture, celebrity culture and general ego, Field’s film is bound to stay in the public’s consciousness for a while, seeing as its focuses are so relevant.
Played by Cate Blanchett, the film follows Lydia Tár, a world-renowned classical composer with a fiery orchestra that she uses as an outlet to express her emotion. However, her life begins to spiral out of her control when her past comes back to haunt her in unexpected ways.
There are countless well done aspects to “TÁR,” but the standout is clearly Cate Blanchett as Lydia Tár herself. She so effortlessly engulfs herself as the character, making every inflection and little quirk an integral part of her character. Her performance is one of the best of the year, and I’m sure Blanchett will be showered in awards in the coming months.
Another exceptional element was the cinematography by Florian Hoffmeister. Specifically, there is a scene near the beginning of the film where Tár debates a Juilliard student over the idea of separating the art from the artist. Aside from the scene being especially well-written, it is also shot in one take. It may be a simple technique, but when thinking about all the coordination that went into it, it becomes clear how astounding the shot composition is in every scene.
Similarly, the editing and sound design is a true marvel. Standing at a daunting 158 minute runtime, it’s honestly shocking how transfixed I was during the entire thing. It’s definitely a slow movie, but the editing makes it feel so carefully plotted out. It’s hard to lose interest as the film dives deeper into Tár’s psyche. Combined with booming and chilling sound design, this film is definitely one to see in theaters if you get the chance.
“TÁR” has plenty of topical messages. This gives it an edge over other films at this point in the year. I highly recommend this film if you’re interested in a thought-provoking movie that takes its time.