Eye For Film >> Movies >> Mm (2017) Film Review
Reviewed by: Jennie Kermode
Mmmmm. it’s a sound we associated with pleasure. It’s the first consonant most of us learn to pronounce, which is thought to be why it opens the words mummy, mama, maman, mom, mother, mere. It’s a sound full of resonance, literally and metaphorically. It’s also the introduction to man, male, macho, masculine… motorbike.
Originally commissioned for the 2017 Berwick Film and Media Arts Festival and shot on 35mm, Margaret Salmon’s multifaceted film flirts with notions of linguistic determinism, imaging and mouthing words beginning with M, inviting us to think about sounds as we anticipate and then thrill to the sound of reverberating engines. Men and their motorbikes, meeting, mentoring and motivating each other. Gloved and oil-stained hands tend to the bikes like mothers. Sometimes children are present, families watching, murmuring their support as the men get ready to race.
A muddy field; a dirt track; the Berwick Bandits made to be in motion. Salmon sets her own pace, ostensibly just observing but utilising careful edits to manipulate the impression we get. The air is moist and bright. One can almost smell the oil and dirt and sweat, feel the trembling of the earth as machines begin to hum. Strings of words onscreen may remind viewers of children’s educational programming. Magic, magic M.
Salmon has created a little magic of her own.Reviewed on: 24 Feb 2018