Alejandro González Iñárritu has four Academy Awards on his mantle. That comes along with seven total Oscar nominations, so it’s pretty clear that the industry is fond of him. Moreover, you don’t get to make something like Bardo unless you have some major clout, in addition to complex ideas worth sharing. So, when I was given the chance to talk with Iñárritu about it in a decently long form (we got about twenty minutes in total), it was an opportunity I wasn’t about to pass up. After all, once you see the film, you want to discuss it, and I’ve seen it twice.
Below, you can see my conversation with Iñárritu. We spoke briefly in Los Angeles a month and change ago during a junket, so I referenced that here in our latest chat. He’s open and honest about his process, which is always nice to hear. Plus, with something like Bardo, you just want to pick the artist’s brain, which I was lucky enough to do here. If you’ve seen the movie, you’ll understand. If you haven’t, it streams on Netflix this weekend and is well worth a watch.
Back at the Telluride Film Festival, I had this here to say about Bardo:
Alejandro González Iñárritu is not afraid to challenge his audience, that’s for sure. His latest film, the passion project Bardo (or False Chronicle of a Handful of Truths), is a lot to ask from viewers. It makes perfect sense that this movie has started its run with a bit of a divisive reception. Even in a festival environment, watching Iñárritu channel Fellini and 8 1⁄2 in this manner is a big ask. At the same time, those willing to give themselves over to Bardo will see something that may not always make sense, but is full of incredible imagery, as well as a sense that a filmmaker is giving all of himself to you. Whether or not the story resonates is one thing, but it’s impossible not to respect the ambition. Playing a the Telluride Film Festival, Bardo is a flick that, love it or hate it, you won’t soon forget.
Bardo (or False Chronicle of a Handful of Truths) meanders a lot, but the more you just go with the flow, the better it all works for you. Fight this one and it will fight back. At three hours long, it’s not an easy watch, but it can be a rewarding one. Just know that going in, since Netflix has let Iñárritu really go to town here.
Here now is my interview with Bardo filmmaker Alejandro González Iñárritu. Enjoy:
Bardo drops on Netflix this Friday!