102 minutes, Colour
Principal Cast: Holly Hunter, Danny DeVito, Queen Latifah, Martin Donovan
|Gosh golly -- A gala
Hollywood movie! Got a same-day ticket at the theatre. No
waiting at all, except to get in. While in line, we (me,
Mom, and Scott) tried to recall the last Hollywood film
that we didn't dislike. I took out my diary and started
working my way backwards. Flip. Flip. Flip. Um... Does
this qualify as Hollywood? Nope, it's British. Oh, right.
Flip, flip, flip.
I didn't know anything about his film going in except that Holly Hunter and Danny DeVito were in it. So was Martin Donovan, who was much himself, and always a pleasure to watch.
The film was not bad at all. Only one noticeable misstep which I thought upset the rhythm of the film. Competently written, reasonably made. I thought DeVito kept things in check. Will I remember this film a year from now? Five years from now? Probably there'll be a few of us.
91 minutes, Colour
Principal Cast: Jeffrey Falcon, Justin McGuire, Stephane Gauger, John Sakisian
Rating: Satisfactory, but not for want of trying
|Hard to know how to sum
up this film. It was definitely a midnight madness flick,
and had a whole lot of visual panache and rollicking
tunes. But I wish there had been more. Here's a good bit
-- If I
were you, I'd run.
The premise: In 1957 the Russians dropped the bomb. In 1997, Elvis The King dies. There is a call to Lost Vegas, the last bastion of freedom, for a new king. "Buddy" takes his 1957 six-string and samurai sword in hand for a journey through the badlands to the emerald city. Nods to many other film here: "Mad Max", "High Plains Drifter" (or any other Clint Eastwood western), "Wizard of Oz", and any number of films with furious swordplay.
|Breathing basil-scented air in that same park on Cumberland Ave. The humidity and clouds have passed leaving everything cool and dry. It turns out the smell is not basil after all, but rather soap fragrance from a shop across the road. But that doesn't make the sky any less blue.|
113 minutes, Colour
Principal Cast: Elodie Bouchez, Natacha Régnier, Grégoire Colin, Jo Prestia, Patrick Mercado
|There is something about
a French film... The way it follows characters instead of
actions of grand events. Like being washed over by a
wave, it feels mostly fabulous, then is gone without a
trace. The water's still there, but in its non-wave form.
The film was just like that.
It's the story of Isa and Marie, two young women, and their friendship over a span of a couple of months sitting a flat in the north of France. Marie becomes involved with a beefy bouncer and a "con mec" who runs the local bar. Isa reads the diary of the flat owner's daughter whom she visits in the hospital (she's in a coma). If you're asking "So what happens?" then just skip this film. I've already told you what happens. The reason to see this movie is for the two leads: Elodie Bouchez and Natacha Régnier (who is terribly pretty. Sad, but very pretty. To me, anyway.)
It's been an hour and a half since I got of the film, and as time goes by, I like it more and more. I think I react to some people the same way too. Does my impression of them improve with the embellishments of remembering?
United Kingdom, 1998
91 minutes, Colour
Principal Cast: Sir Derek Jacobi, Daniel Craig, Tilda Swinton, Adrian Scarborough, Anne Lambton, Anabel Brooks, Karl Johnson
Rating: Unsatisfactory, but good for technique.
|Back in the big house in
the Varsity. Dave arrived just in time, which is somewhat
sooner than I had expected. I think the film started
The reason for picking this film was probably Tilda Swinton. It sure wasn't the subject matter -- English painter Francis Bacon. Everything I know about Bacon I learned in this film. While there was some very innovative and fabulous camera work and photography, there just wasn't enough on which to hang the hat of my interest. At about the 60 minute mark, my patience was exhausted, and I started to observe the technique. Derek Jacobi is, of course, quite good
There's at least one clever line to take away from the film. As Bacon empties a bottle on a friend's head in a bar: "Champagne for my real friends. Real pain for my sham friends."
Some Q&A with Maybury:
Q: What drew you to
Q: Why did you not
show any of Bacon's paintings?
Q: Could you talk
about the photography?
Q: What do you think
about when you watch this film?
While Dave was perhaps less unplussed than I, it was still a disappointing end to the day. I'm starting to accumulate a sleep debt that I expect to be pretty crushing by the time all this is done.
I later mentioned to Dave how I sometimes reach a point in a film that I'm not enjoying where I reach for an imaginary channel changer and start surfing. It seldom works except in programs of short films. But there I haven't needed one yet.
That's almost a nice segue into (the next day's) screenings.
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