Sunday, 13 April 2008

My Week(s) in Film

Over the past few weeks I've been festivalling like mad and I've not seen a 'regular release' film since... ok since March 18, which isn't that long ago but for me it feels like ages! Here are the films that have graced my small screen recently.

First up is the 2006 documentary Black Gold based on the international coffee trade, starting in farms in Ethiopia all the way to the first ever Starbucks. I had in the back of my head that the reason to see this was because it was Canadian, but it isn't - it's a UK/USA co-pro. Bizarre. It is a pretty good documentary, but I felt I still had questions on my mind afterwards. More information about the issue can be found at the films official site.

Next up was one that I missed last year on the awards crunch: Michael Clayton. I can tell I've been away from Hollywood films for a bit because I could see that this was a good film, but I didn't really enjoy it. Strong acting, good story, high production values it had all of those elements but it didn't grab me, beyond Tilda Swinton - she is well deserved of her Oscar with her amazing performance. Other than that, I found it to be very similar to The Insider but not as compelling.

The only other newish film I watched Caché, or at least started to watch. I got through the first hour and it was very good, but I will have to catch up on the second half later.

The next three films I saw were more up my alley and a world of kitsch.
The Omega Man, Godzilla vs Megalon and a revisit of Tron. I ended up watching The Omega Man just days before the passing of the legend, Charlton Heston which is so sad. The reason I wanted to see the film was due to watching both I Am Legend and The Last Man on Earth recently, and all three films are based on the same book: "I Am Legend" by Richard Matheson. I have to say, The Omega Man has a totally different feel to it from the other two as it is oh-so 70's with the soundtrack, clothing, etc but ironically out of the three it actually has a feeling of a political message as well. At least, that is what I think it was going for, man. One film that took it's sweet time to get through my library queue was Godzilla vs Megalon. After some of the heavy films I've seen recently this was just what I needed to temper a balance. What little dialogue was in the film is oddly dubbed, the monsters are very campy and there are extended periods of time with no sound other than "Rawr!". I loved every minute of it, enjoying it with glee and joy. It is a total classic. Now to see if I can find more Godzilla movies! Last but not least was revisiting Tron, which I am so surprized is a Disney film. I hadn't seen it for a good 20 years and it reads the same: campy and fun and a lot of blue light. I was inspired to revisit Tron as it's based in the game world and I'm going to check out Second Skin at Hot Docs, which is a documentary based on people who play massive multiplayer online role playing games (MMORPG's).

The next little while will be summing up some festivals as well as enjoying
Hot Docs, but if I sneak in any 'regular' films I will let you know!



Suzie Ridler said...

This is absolutely my favourite post of the week of yours Shannon, hearing what's been going on in your week of movies is fascinating and fun to read. Interesting that Hollywood isn't speaking to you as much, it sure isn't speaking to me at all. I'd rather stay home and that says something. I'm closer and closer to signing up for zip! Thanks to your inspiration.

Anonymous said...

"Black Gold" is one I've been meaning to see. I keep walking by it at the video store but will likely break down and rent it this week.

As for "Tron", I had the chance to see it on the big screen earlier this year (only the second time I've ever seen that film) and I saw many a similarity to "The Matrix" (which I saw immediately afterwards). At some point, I'm going to have to write a "paper" comparison on these two!

Sounds like it's been a great couple of weeks!

Shannon the Movie Moxie said...

I'm glad you've enjoyed reading these Suzie! I love seeing what comes together each week either by chance or by accident.

I hope you enjoy zip if you try it!

Marina, I think I was inspired to watch Tron again because you mentioned it on a podcast, I was very curious if it would hold up over time.

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