Synopsis by Derek Armstrong
Songs From the Second Floor, which shared the Special Jury Prize at the 2000 Cannes Film Festival, is an indescribably surrealistic examination of the pointlessness of modern life in a nameless city full of directionless people. Throughout a series of unrelated vignettes, all marked by absurd black humor, the film's characters stand witness to an utterly motionless traffic jam, the pathetic firing of a 30-year employee, a magic trick gone horribly wrong, and the failed business ventures of a crucifix salesman. Dialogue is largely absent from the film, and even where present, it usually only confounds what little expository quality there is in the narrative. The tone of Swedish director Roy Anderssen's highly original and challenging project recalls such bleak visionaries as Samuel Beckett and Luis Buñuel, and though it certainly perplexed audiences, it also left them laughing uncontrollably.
crucifix, job-loss, salesperson, traffic-jam, trick, witness