Northfork is a stunningly beautiful, original film by the Polish Brothers, Michael and Mark. It tells the story of the death by drowning of a Montana town named Northfork in 1955 when a dam is built. It’s visually stunning with every shot filled with meaning. It’s a complicated film that jumps around between characters and stories that all tie in with evacuation, religion, angels, and journeys. It works on a metaphorical as well as a literal level and is close to magic realism. Northfork is one of those films that I watch and just have to sit and think for a bit after it finishes and absorb it. I’m still absorbing and processing it. The Polish Brothers link together the stories of a sick boy, salesman-like evacuation committee members, a minister, and some angels in way that blends the stories together in a surprisingly moving way. It’s quite a unique film, but it does evoke similar emotions in me as Wim Wenders’ Wings of Desire did. Unfortunately Northfork didn’t receive a very wide theatrical distribution and I wish that I was able to see it projected in a theatre.
Northfork is the third film by the Mark and Michael Polish and I’ve only see their first, which is Twin Falls Idaho, where the identical twins play conjoined twins in what is called “a different kind of love story.” I saw it a year or two ago late one night and it was haunting. Then when I saw the trailer for their second film, Jackpot, I wanted to see that too, but never did. Now I have to see Jackpot to fill in the blanks. The Polish Brothers are very talented, original filmmakers who epitomize independent filmmaking.