- Gareth Crook
Slow TV - Train Ride Bergen to Oslo (2009)
Updated: Jul 31, 2019
This isn’t a film. Not a documentary either or though it’s arguably a document. It’s a 7 hour locked shot from the front of a train traveling from Bergen to Oslo. It’s really best suited to a gallery space, but then it’s duration is problematic. Perhaps Netflix is a good vehicle for this. Personally I’ve watched it in sections of varying length, sometimes with podcasts playing, a book on the go or doing some work. I did find myself drawn to the screen though for periods of time whilst zoning out to the undeniably beautiful and varied landscape. Going into tunnels is fun, as is coming out. The sometimes long stretches in the dark in between, not so much. There’s bits of inaudible conversation, PA announcements and long pauses at stations. Essentially you’re the driver, trapped mute and powerless. It’s very zen and hypnotic. There’s another film in the series, on a boat I believe, that’s 11 hours. I’m not sure I’ve the (sea)legs for that one, but this is oddly captivating. I now want to visit Norway... the Bergen end, it looks nicer.