Tar Review

If you want to be absolutely baffled and confused by a movie, Tar is definitely a must watch.


By Katie Havens / Matthew Staff || Edited by Ella Schale

Psychological drama “Tár” (2022) via IMDb. 

If you want to be absolutely baffled and confused by a movie, Tar is definitely a must watch. After finishing this film, I had no clue what to make of it, as its extensive amount of random scenes and lack of explanation left a lot of room for interpretation. However, after reading up on specific scenes, I now realize the genius intricacy behind the subtle nuances give the film a deeper meaning. 

This movie is about a successful female conductor, composer, musician, and writer, who leads a controversial career. By taking a deep dive into the psyche of the main character, Lydia Tar, the viewers of this movie are left just as confused as Lydia herself. Oftentimes, it is hard to tell what truly occurs and what is only inside Lydia’s head, making the interpretations difficult to grasp on to. 

What makes this movie brilliant is the way that sound is used to express more than it superficially is. Viewers are met with a painful silence, a loud orchestra, a ticking metronome, and a music note. Much of this correlates to what Lydia Tar feels or is experiencing, and once again, we are left unsure of what occurred and what was merely a figment of her imagination. 

The writing of this movie perfectly balances the portrayal of Lydia Tar to simultaneously cause the viewers to pity and despise her. This may be what makes the film so beautifully frustrating, as it constantly moves in a perplexing spiral of emotion. The actress, Cate Blanchett, does a wonderful job in playing this complicated character who experiences what seems to be every emotion possible throughout the film. 

Tar trailer

Somehow, this movie is both minimalistic and filled with detail. What makes it confusing to follow is that there is absolutely no backstory, and all we have are the little hints that insinuate certain meanings. The film becomes detailed through the interconnectedness of certain scenes that put the story together like puzzle pieces. Since explanation was deficient, it was necessary to look towards the minuscule details that made a big impact on the interpretation of the film. 

If I were to review “Tar” without reading up on the explanations of scenes and their meanings, I would call the movie a nonsensical display of random clips strewn together. However, there was purposeful calculation in the way that the film was set up, causing it to be thought provoking, although confusing. 

My advice is to give this movie a chance. I had to watch it over the span of three settings, as I became frustrated with its tendency to leave viewers in the dark. With that being said, there are many things to ponder following this film, and it is pretty safe to say you have never seen anything like it before. Although it could have been made easier to initially understand, the need for a deeper interpretation is what makes this film valuable, giving it 4/5 stars.

Rating: 4 out of 5.