Tuesday, 3 June 2008

My Week In Film


This is a bit of a time delayed for My Week in Film as I saw a bunch of mostly limited releases before covering the Inside Out Toronto Lesbian and Gay Film and Video Festival. It was great to spend some time with current releases, and thankfully I enjoyed all of them. Although I do on occasion get bustled into the hype of a big film and then end up disappointed, I actually have quite a strong internal radar for films I like and I felt that way about all four films I set out to see on this run.

The first from the lot I saw was Redbelt, written and directed by David Mamet and starring Chiwetel Ejiofor. Previous to Redbelt the films I had seen by David Mamet were State and Main and House of Games and I was aware of the fact that he has a particular style going into the film but no more details than that. I would say it's mostly the dialogue which I wonder if is on par with this other films as it's termed as rhythmic, and I can see that but I found the repetition so stylized. It did make me pause to think throughout, and sometimes it worked better than others. Also, the film felt like it was billed as a martial arts film and although that is a strong element to it, martial arts brought the setting to life in what was really a drama. Overall I thought the acting was great, story was interesting and I was captivated throughout.

Next up I sought out an unlikely double bill of My Blueberry Nights and Son of Rambow. Although the films had almost nothing in common I loved them both. I was slightly worried about the bleak reviews for My Blueberry Nights and I can say with confidence I disagree with all of them. Wong Kar Wai creates yet another wonderful, textural film that is an emotional journey for the characters and the viewer. I was impressed by Norah Jones' debut performance and I was thrilled to say Jude Law was great as well. It was a great start to the double bill, and next up was Son of Rambow which had been on my radar since early 2008 and it delivers as promised. It is a funny and touching film centred on an unlikely friendship of two boys in the 80's set out to create their own sequel to Rambo. This truly is a gem of a film.

I also got out to see the Then She Found Me with Danette, who is always lovely movie going company. I was so happy to see this film, and mystified that it had received so little attention. It's a fantastic film, with stellar acting and the story was compelling and real. I enjoyed the performances by both Bette Midler and Colin Firth. As for Helen Hunt, she was awesome. In fact, Danette wrote an great letter to Helen Hunt that really hits all the right notes. Fantastic film.

Oh, there is one more film I caught up with, and you can see my full review for it: S&M: Short and Male. This is one of the documentaries I missed at Hot Docs and I found it to be very interesting.

As I ended up in the theatre a lot I was bombarded by preshow looped advertising, commercials and previews. I have to ask what is with the new eyeball vs tongue commercials? A world of gross. More interesting were some of the new trailers: The Wackness where brought some nostagia to '94 which I'm not sure I can handle yet. American Teen which looks fascinating and I couldn't tell if it was a doc or drama especially after seeing the poster which replicates The Breakfast Club. It is however, a documentary. Also seen were many trailers for Sex and the City.

The Wackness Trailer - I saw teaser 2, spoiler free until about 3/4 way through
American Teen Trailer - You get the gist of the film by the 1/2 way point
Sex and the City Trailer - has tons of spoilers

Next week: Postal, Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, Hard Core Logo, Lucky You and hopefully a few Toshirô Mifune films.


Suzie Ridler said...

Oh dear, well, maybe R won't be as interested in Redbelt as I thought, he really wanted it to be a martial arts movie.

So happy to hear the My Blueberry Nights was good, I had a good feeling about that one.

Son of Rambow looked like such a winner, I'm so glad you liked it.

I totally agree about those commercials, it makes me feel nauseous. Ugh.

American Teen looks amazing! I love that it's a documentary, I really want to see that one.

Interesting week in film MM!

Shannon the Movie Moxie said...

Don't tell R it isn't one then ;). Just kidding, but it is centred on Martial Arts but it isn't an action flick. Actually, now that I think about it with R in mind I bet he'd *love* it.

And you Suzie, would looooooooove Son of Rambow :)

Anonymous said...

Fabulous week indeed. I totally missed the local run of "My Blueberry Nights" and even with John, Kurt and Andrew's positive reviews, I didn't feel the need to make a special trip out to see it. If it moves closer into the Downtown core I may still catch it but otherwise, it'll be a rental.

Sadly, "Son of Rambow" played out in the boonies of Vancouver and I hoped it too would come in closer but that hasn't happened yet. Still holding my breath for that one.

You know my thoughts on "Redbelt" so I'll leave it at that!

Suzie Ridler said...

OK, I won't tell R then, LOL. We both really want to see Son of Rambow, I'm so glad you think I'd like it!

Shannon the Movie Moxie said...

That's too bad that the films weren't in convenience places for you Marina. I bet you'd get a kick outta Son of Rambow. I loved My Blueberry Nights, have you seen other Wong Kar Wai films? He's such a great director.

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