Author Topic: goodguy's Watch Log  (Read 69874 times)

Offline Antares

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Re: goodguy's Watch Log
« Reply #150 on: December 28, 2010, 01:32:42 AM »
  Ondine (IRL 2009)
Written & Directed by: Neil Jordan
Starring: Colin Farrell, Alicja Bachleda, Dervla Kirwan, Alison Barry
DVD: R1-US Magnolia (Sep 21, 2010)

My rating:

Just finished watching this with my wife, we both loved it. Great atmosphere and story. And you're right the thriller ending seemed out of place.

Offline goodguy

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Re: goodguy's Watch Log
« Reply #151 on: December 30, 2010, 05:03:20 AM »
It's the end of the year and Top Ten lists are everywhere. I've seen 38 of the films released in 2010 so far. If I had to create a Top Ten, it would contain only eight entries. So here are the top five ranked and the rest alphabetical in groups from "Excellent" to "Bad".


Most Magnificently Marvelous

1.Kosmos (Turkey 2010, Reha Erdem)IMDbTrailer

Kosmos is a thief and a miracle-worker. He appears one morning in a tiny, snowbound border village where he is welcomed with open arms – on account of arriving just in time to resuscitate a small boy who would otherwise have drowned. (http://www.kosmos.com.tr/)

Terrific

2.Habitación en Roma (Spain 2010, Julio Medem)IMDbTrailer

A hotel room in the center of Rome serves as the setting for two young and recently acquainted women to have a physical adventure that touches their very souls. (IMDb)

3.Winter's Bone (2010, Debra Granik)IMDbTrailer

An unflinching Ozark Mountain girl hacks through dangerous social terrain as she hunts down her drug-dealing father while trying to keep her family intact. (IMDb)

4.Ondine (Ireland 2009, Neil Jordan)IMDbTrailer

The story of an Irish fisherman who discovers a woman in his fishing net who he believes to be a Selkie. (IMDb)

5.Copie conforme (FR 2010, Abbas Kiarostami)IMDbTrailer

In Tuscany to promote his latest book, a middle-aged English writer meets a French woman who leads him to the village of Lucignano. (IMDb)


Excellent

Black Swan (2010, Darren Aronofsky)IMDb

A ballet dancer wins the lead in "Swan Lake" is perfect for the role of the delicate White Swan, but slowly looses her mind as she becomes more and more like the evil twin sister of the White Swan, the Black Swan. (IMDb)

Kick-Ass (2010, Matthew Vaughn)IMDb

Dave Lizewski is an unnoticed high school student and comic book fan who one day decides to become a super-hero, even though he has no powers, training or meaningful reason to do so. (IMDb)

The Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call - New Orleans (2009, Werner Herzog)IMDb

Terence McDonagh is a drug- and gambling-addled detective in post-Katrina New Orleans investigating the killing of five Senegalese immigrants. (IMDb)


Great

An Education (UK 2009, Lone Scherfig)IMDb

A coming-of-age story about a teenage girl in 1960s suburban London, and how her life changes with the arrival of a playboy nearly twice her age. (IMDb)

The Kids Are All Right (2010, Lisa Cholodenko)IMDb

Two children conceived by artificial insemination bring their birth father into their family life. (IMDb)

Scott Pilgrim vs. the World (2010, Edgar Wright)IMDb

Scott Pilgrim must defeat his new girlfriend's seven evil exes in order to win her heart. (IMDb)

The Secret of Kells (Ireland 2009, Tomm Moore, Nora Twomey)IMDb

The animated story of the boy behind the famed Book of Kells. (IMDb)

Tetro (2009, Francis Ford Coppola)IMDbTrailer

Bennie travels to Buenos Aires to find his long-missing older brother, a once-promising writer who is now a remnant of his former self. Bennie's discovery of his brother's near-finished play might hold the answer to understanding their shared past and renewing their bond. (IMDb)

The Yellow Handkerchief (2008, Udayan Prasad)IMDbTrailer

A road trip through Louisiana transforms three strangers who were originally brought together by their respective feelings of loneliness. (IMDb)


Good

Amer (FR 2009, Hélène Cattet, Bruno Forzani)IMDbTrailer

Three key moments, all of them sensual, define Ana's life. Her carnal search sways between reality and... (IMDb)

Chloe (2009, Atom Egoyan)IMDb

A doctor hires an escort to seduce her husband, whom she suspects of cheating, though unforeseen events put the family in danger. (IMDb)

The Ghost Writer (2010, Roman Polanski)IMDb

A ghostwriter hired to complete the memoirs of a former British prime minister uncovers secrets that put his own life in jeopardy. (IMDb)

Inception (2010, Christopher Nolan)IMDb

In a world where technology exists to enter the human mind through dream invasion, a highly skilled thief is given a final chance at redemption which involves executing his toughest job to date: Inception. (IMDb)

The Killer Inside Me (2010, Michael Winterbottom)IMDbTrailer

A West Texas deputy sheriff is slowly unmasked as a psychotic killer. (IMDb)

My Son, My Son, What Have Ye Done (2009, Werner Herzog)IMDbTrailer

Inspired by a true crime, a man begins to experience mystifying events that lead him to slay his mother with a sword. (IMDb)

Rabbit Hole (2010, John Cameron Mitchell)IMDb

Life for a happy couple is turned upside down after their young son dies in an accident. Based on a play by David Lindsay-Abaire. (IMDb)

The Runaways (2010, Floria Sigismondi)IMDb

A coming-of-age biopic about '70s teenage band The Runaways. (IMDb)

Salt (2010, Phillip Noyce)IMDb

A CIA agent goes on the run after a defector accuses her of being a Russian spy. (IMDb)

The Social Network (2010, David Fincher)IMDb

A story about the founders of the social-networking website, Facebook. (IMDb)

Trucker (2008, James Mottern)IMDb

A trucker, leading a life free of depth and on the way to nowhere, is forced to make a decision about her aggressive loner 11-year-old son whom she openly deserted ten years previously. (IMDb)

Whip It! (2009, Drew Barrymore)IMDb

In Bodeen, Texas, an indie-rock loving misfit finds a way of dealing with her small-town misery after she discovers a roller derby league in nearby Austin. (IMDb)


Average

Les amours imaginaires (CA 2010, Xavier Dolan)IMDbTrailer

The story of three close friends who are involved in a love-triangle. (IMDb)

Bibliothèque Pascal (Hungary 2010, Szabolcs Hajdu)IMDbTrailer

In order to regain custody of her daughter, whom she left in the care of her fortune-telling aunt, Mona must tell a social worker her story... (IMDb)

Cracks (UK 2009, Jordan Scott)IMDb

A look at the lives and relationships among girls at an elite British boarding school. (IMDb)

Iron Man 2 (2010, Jon Favreau)IMDb

Because of his superhero alter ego, Tony Stark must contend with deadly issues involving the government, his own friends and new enemies. (IMDb)

Monsters (UK 2010, Gareth Edwards)IMDb

Six years after Earth has suffered an alien invasion a cynical journalist agrees to escort a shaken American tourist through an infected zone in Mexico to the safety of the US border. (IMDb)

Shutter Island (2010, Martin Scorsese)IMDb

Drama set in 1954, U.S. Marshal Teddy Daniels is investigating the disappearance of a murderess who escaped from a hospital for the criminally insane and is presumed to be hiding on the remote Shutter Island. (IMDb)

The Twilight Saga: Eclipse (2010, David Slade)IMDb

As a string of mysterious killings grips Seattle, Bella, whose high school graduation is fast approaching, is forced to choose between her love for vampire Edward and her friendship with werewolf Jacob. (IMDb)

Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives (Thailand 2010, Apichatpong Weerasethakul)IMDbTrailer

On his deathbed, Uncle Boonmee, recalls his many past lives. (IMDb)


Bad

Sherlock Holmes (2009, Guy Ritchie)IMDb

Detective Sherlock Holmes and his stalwart partner Watson engage in a battle of wits and brawn with a nemesis whose plot is a threat to all of England. (IMDb)

Somewhere (2010, Sofia Coppola)IMDb

A hard-living Hollywood actor re-examines his life after his 11-year-old daughter surprises him with a visit. (IMDb)

Up in the Air (2009, Jason Reitman)IMDb

With a job that has him traveling around the country firing people, Ryan Bingham leads an empty life out of a suitcase, until his company does the unexpected: ground him. (IMDb)

Youth in Revolt (2009, Miguel Arteta)IMDb

While his trailer trash parents teeter on the edge of divorce, Nick Twisp sets his sights on dream girl Sheeni Saunders, hoping that she'll be the one to take away his virginity. (IMDb)

« Last Edit: December 30, 2010, 05:10:35 AM by goodguy »
Matthias

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Re: goodguy's Watch Log
« Reply #152 on: December 30, 2010, 05:20:18 AM »
That's a really nice way to display the films you saw for the year. There's still a few high up on your list that I haven't seen and I want to watch them now. Also why do you put the countries next to some films and not others? For example you have UK next to An Education but not next to Kick-Ass which is also a British film.

Offline goodguy

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Re: goodguy's Watch Log
« Reply #153 on: December 30, 2010, 05:37:33 AM »
That's a really nice way to display the films you saw for the year.

Thanks.

Also why do you put the countries next to some films and not others? For example you have UK next to An Education but not next to Kick-Ass which is also a British film.

Omitted country stands for US, but I cleaned up the co-productions manually and might have made some mistakes in picking a primary one.
« Last Edit: December 30, 2010, 05:40:11 AM by goodguy »
Matthias

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Re: goodguy's Watch Log
« Reply #154 on: December 30, 2010, 05:46:47 AM »
Ah that makes sense. A lot of people thought Kick-Ass was a US film when it was actually an independent British film made to look like a big-budget American film. They did manage to fool a few people.  :laugh:

Offline goodguy

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Re: goodguy's Watch Log
« Reply #155 on: January 03, 2011, 11:30:00 PM »
  Hukkle (Hungary 2002)IMDb

Director:  György Pálfi
Writer:György Pálfi
Cast:Ferenc Bandi, Józsefné Rácz, József Forkas, Ferenc Nagy, Ferencné Virág
DVD:Soda Pictures (UK 2005)


My rating:

Images and sounds (but almost no discernible dialogue) from a rural Hungarian village: the humans, animals and plants treated with almost equal regard in a natural cycle of life and death, punctuated by the hiccups of an old man sitting on a bench by the roadside. Pálfi's almost documentary approach of looking at this and that is held together by a keen sense of rhythm and often surprising or humorous transitions. Towards the end, it becomes slowly clear that their was actually a narrative all along, but I didn't fully catch up to it until the mystery is resolved in a final song at a wedding.

While the following trailer fits the movie rather well, it might already reveal a little too much:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iOLoR6nXeyw
Matthias

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Re: goodguy's Watch Log
« Reply #156 on: January 24, 2011, 10:49:52 PM »
I've been catching up on some Mark Kermode pod-casts and a snippet about cinema etiquette came up. Simon Mayo, his radio DJ host of the show had apparently Tweeted him from a screening. Kermode said this just wasn't right and was against the rules of etiquette he had previously taught him at great length! Mayo protested that it was an empty cinema so he wasn't disturbing anyone, to which Kermode replied that he wasn't respecting the film. Mayo defended this by saying the film was not a sentient being... where am I going with this, you may wonder.   :-[

Well, a listener wrote in and used Sita Sings The Blues to ask the question, how far can you take cinema etiquette when the film takes part? Apparently Sita has an intermission, where the characters fetch huge vats of popcorn and cola!  :laugh:

You've done well to promote the film so I thought that was a nice point to demonstrate the breadth and irreverence of the animation. Not my thing, as I've said before, but still a very witty thing to do. :thumbup:


Offline Achim

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Re: goodguy's Watch Log
« Reply #157 on: January 25, 2011, 05:43:12 AM »
I've been catching up on some Mark Kermode pod-casts and a snippet about cinema etiquette came up.
That was great fun when they set this up :laugh: "Code of Conduct", it's called. There is even a video for it.

The picture is here.

Some listeners printed the list down on little name cards, so they can give them out to offenders in cinemas :hysterical:

Offline Dragonfire

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Re: goodguy's Watch Log
« Reply #158 on: January 25, 2011, 05:47:43 AM »
That etiquette stuff is good.

Offline goodguy

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Re: goodguy's Watch Log
« Reply #159 on: February 16, 2011, 01:39:46 AM »


Doctor Who (UK 2005-, Season 1-5)IMDb

Season 1: Over in the Doctor Who thread, Jon was chiding me for saying "Doctor Who is all crap except for this bit..."  At the time I had seen S4 and parts of S5 and I didn't actually say that or even wanted to imply it. But since Russel T. Davies apparently had no qualms about dedicating three (three!) episodes of S1 to farting aliens disguised as members of the British government, I don't hesitate to say that, yes, S1 is mostly crap. BTW, back in 2005, one of these episodes was my first encounter with Doctor Who and it took me five years to recover from that experience. Anyway, the only thing of note here is the WW2 two-parter The Empty Child/The Doctor Dances. It was written by Steven Moffat, and while it isn't on par with his later contributions, it is miles above the rest of the season. I don't recall ever watching a TV show were I was tempted to use the fast forward button that much and not doing so took considerable will power. After having already seen David Tennant and Matt Smith, Christopher Eccleston as The Doctor took the most getting used to, not because he was bad, but because his appearance and approach was quite different from the other two. Billie Piper as Rose was hit and miss and her boyfriend Mickey just annoying the entire time.

Season 2: David Tennant takes over as The Doctor and his attitude makes the lesser episodes a little more bearable, but otherwise the verdict is the same as for S1. Steven Moffat contributes one of the best episodes of the entire five seasons with The Girl in the Fireplace. How the show can follow up an episode this brilliant with such utter generic garbage as the Cybermen two-parter is something to marvel at. Aside from the Moffat episode, the only thing of note is The Impossible Planet/The Satan Pit.

Season 3: With the beginning of S3, the crapfest finally ends. The first episode introduces the new companion Martha Jones and is a funny and enjoyable romp. With the Shakespeare episode it gets even better, but then again it goes rapidly downhill, topping the worst of S1 and S2 with the Dalek/pigface two-parter, stalls with a couple of more episodes that are at least not too bad, and unexpectedly becomes great again with Human Nature/The Family of Blood, which might just be the best episodes not written by Moffat, who nevertheless tops that with the Weeping Angels and Carey Mulligan in Blink. The three-part finale with The Master has its moments, with no small thanks to John Simm, but is again a rather average affair. Overall, S3 has probably the most highlights of any of the Davies seasons and those highlights can't even be attributed to Moffat alone.

Season 4: The best that can be said about S4 is that there isn't any episode that is as excruciatingly bad as in previous seasons; for the most part it is all pretty watchable. Moffat again provides the highlight with Silence in the Library/ Forest of the Dead and of the other episodes The Fires of Pompeii and Midnight are at least worth mentioning. And Catherine Tate as Donna Noble might actually be my favorite companion.

Season 5: Steven Moffat replaces Russel T. Davies as show runner and finally Doctor Who takes off. Not only does Moffat excite with gripping and clever storytelling, he also brings in a couple of new directors and cinematographers who are able to make Doctor Who visually interesting as well. Daleks and funny-faced aliens are gone for the most part (in fact the one Dalek episode is the only real clunker in the entire season). Matt Smith and Karen Gillan as The Doctor and Amy Pond are impressive right from the beginning, no small feat considering that, at least acting-wise, they have big shoes to fill. Amy is once again a companion with a boyfriend and while that seems to go a bit the Mickey route at first, Rory is much better written and Arthur Darvill a much better actor, although both actor and character reminded me a little bit of Wash in Firefly. S5 also has an overall season story arc, although it doesn't always fully integrate with the actual episodes as demonstrated especially in The Hungry Earth/ Cold Blood where the ending completely overshadows the otherwise rather stand-alonish episode. The season finale however is not only the best one of Doctor Who by a large margin; it simply is a thing of beauty and brilliance. With S5, Doctor Who has become a must-see show for me and I really hope Moffat can keep this up in subsequent seasons.
« Last Edit: February 16, 2011, 04:58:32 AM by goodguy »
Matthias

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Re: goodguy's Watch Log
« Reply #160 on: February 16, 2011, 09:40:17 PM »
Interesting comments. I share some of your enthusiasm for series 5, especially its arc and my personal fave episode is The Lodger. But certainly not the idea that it is dramatically better. I'm especially intrigued by your dismissal of Billie Piper, yet your appreciation of Karen Gillan. I think they're both on a par with each other acting wise, but character, Rose has a significant edge. I find very little connection between Amy and the Doctor, though that's surely an intention; the old fashioned Doctor Who would often have a dynamic like that rather than a direct relationship. I do agree though that Donna might be best of all. Even then, Rose is the fan favourite.

And that wet weedy whiny Rory over Mickey? Really? (K9 trying to explain to him "We, are in, a car!" is a favourite moment for me!). To be fair though, Mickey came into his own when separated from Rose and became tougher as a Unity agent which you see a couple of times in the specials... which by the way, have you seen? The season 4 specials are essential and you owe it to yourself to reserve judgement on Tenant's tenure until you have seen them. And even if you don't like them still, the series 5 Christmas special is also wonderful, with a quite brilliant twist on A Christmas Carol.

Back to Mickey for a moment. It seemed to me he slowly developed to match the very assured confidence of the actor, Noel Clarke, who is becoming an important figure in British film. He wrote Kidulthood, its sequel and most recently 4.3.2.1, which he also directed. Very talented and interviews well.

Now, ok, you prefer Moffat, but it seems to me that he can't actually pull off a proper Doctor Who story and that could prove calamitous for future series. I'm talking about the very things you seem to discount utterly: the Daleks, the Cybermen, etc. These are classic monsters that are deeply ingrained in the mythology and the core point of Doctor Who is that he is an unlikely, eccentric hero, in a little blue box, who can hold back a fleet of an alien invasion without any recourse to aggression. His relationship and fascination with other races and their absolute right to exist is a recurring theme. Except in Moffat's series 5 where he failed to imbue the classics with any kind of threat. You called the conclusion "a thing of beauty and brilliance", well, what about the awful scene where he contrives all his enemies working together. Where did that come from? And the Dalek in that later episode just didn't work.

I've said this before, but you must remember that the target audience are seven-year olds. The clunky episodes with the silly monsters are the ones designed to specifically make kiddies wet themselves. The Empty Child is a classic episode because of the truly scary gas mask kid, but children are still more likely to hide behind the sofa when a Dalek starts speaking... and that is the spirit of Doctor Who. Moffat needs to find that because Matt Smith, despite a great performance, has a long way to go to match Tenant in popularity.

Each Doctor has their own personality though and I really like Smith. The opening episode was wonderful.

Offline goodguy

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Re: goodguy's Watch Log
« Reply #161 on: April 24, 2011, 09:27:36 AM »
  Anna (FR 1967)IMDb

Director:  Pierre Koralnik
Writer:Serge Gainsbourg, Jean-Loup Dabadie
Cast:Anna Karina, Jean-Claude Brialy, Serge Gainsbourg
DVD:Mercury, Universal (FR 2009)


My rating:

I decided I needed a break from my Godard marathon (16 movies in and still in the '60 :training:), and with all the musical talk going on here recently, I picked this French TV musical. Despite starring Anna Karina (so it's not a complete break) and music by Serge Gainsbourg, it has been largely forgotten and was unearthed only a couple of years ago at the Melbourne Film Festival, leading to some raving reviews.

But it's rather forgettable fluff, more a collection of bad romantic music videos than a musical, wearing its new wave and pop art influences like a fashion statement. Still, there are a couple of better moments, such as a small guest appearance by Marianne Faithfull. And of course Anna Karina doing Ro-Ro-Rollergirl.

« Last Edit: April 24, 2011, 09:32:40 AM by goodguy »
Matthias

Offline goodguy

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Re: goodguy's Watch Log
« Reply #162 on: May 02, 2011, 09:11:04 AM »
  Finisterrae (Spain 2010)IMDb

Director:  Sergio Caballero
Writer:Sergio Caballero
Cast:Pau Nubiola, Santi Serra, Pavel Lukiyanov, Yuri Mykhaylychenko
DVD:Cameo (Spain 2010)


My rating: -

Two ghosts in Barcelona don't want to be ghosts any longer. An oracle tells them how they can become living beings again and they take off on a journey along an old pilgrims path to Fisterra. The ghosts are the classic kind, white sheets with big black eye holes. Although it's a Spanish movie, they speak Russian. The oracle is the Oracle of Garrel: a ring of fire and that incredible Nico song "Janitor of Lunacy" most explicitly marking the homage to Philippe Garrel's early '70s film "La cicatrice intérieure". Mode of transportation is a horse, which sometimes is a real one, sometimes just a crude model, and at others a wheel chair. A road movie then, as a series of surrealist vignettes, with beautiful images of those two lonely figures in the landscape of Northern Spain. But as a feature-length film, it is stretched a little thin even for my taste. And the uneven tone, poetic surrealism offset by droll humor and crude comedy, never quite gels.  Still, despite its shortcomings, this is one of those films worth seeking out at least once for its moments of originality and beauty.

Two trailers below. The first one is truer to the overall visual style of the film, but the latter one has that great song by Nico I mentioned before.



Matthias

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Re: goodguy's Watch Log
« Reply #163 on: May 07, 2011, 02:00:55 PM »
  Guy and Madeline on a Park Bench (2009)IMDb

Director:  Damien Chazelle
Writer:Damien Chazelle
Cast:Jason Palmer, Desiree Garcia, Sandha Khin
DVD:Cinema Guild (US 2011)


My rating:

A full-fledged song-and-dance, tap-and-jazz musical, Damien Chazelle’s GUY AND MADELINE ON A PARK BENCH boldly recasts the 1940’s MGM musical tradition in a gritty, verite style, resulting in an exuberant celebration of romance and music, and one of the most critically-acclaimed films of the year.
Guy and Madeline have been dating for three months, but the excitement of first love has faded. When another woman catches Guy’s eye, sparks fly—spelling the end of Guy and Madeline’s romance. But when things don’t work out quite as planned, Guy must decide whether to try to win Madeline back—even if it may be too late. Their story unfolds in a world of jazz and tap, featuring original music composed by Justin Hurwitz and recorded by the Bratislava Symphony Orchestra.
(Cover)

Whoa, what an unexpected treasure. Since I posted my 2010 list, I've watched a lot more of last year's movies, but none of them was able to challenge the Top Five I made up at the end of the year. Well, here is finally one that does.

Chazelle shot his debut feature handheld, in grainy black-and-white on 16mm. Before the film really begins, the romance of Guy and Madeline is already over, shown in a stunning series of elliptical scenes entirely without dialogue. For the entire film, the storytelling remains distilled down to its barest minimum, and not much is revealed about the characters. Which is fine, really, because Chazelle creates an effortless intimacy out of looks, gestures and almost arbitrary situations, wrapped in a magical jazzy mood and the score of Justin Hurwitz. Highly recommended.

Two trailers (again). The first one is the new theatrical one, and (like the cover blurb) it overstates the MGM musical influence a little. The second one is the old trailer from the Tribeca festival and IMHO a better fit.



« Last Edit: May 07, 2011, 02:03:00 PM by goodguy »
Matthias

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Re: goodguy's Watch Log
« Reply #164 on: May 17, 2011, 08:37:25 AM »
   Brand Upon the Brain! (CA/US 2006)IMDb

Director:  Guy Maddin
Writer:Guy Maddin, Louis Negin, George Toles
Cast:Gretchen Krich, Sullivan Brown, Maya Lawson, Katherine E. Scharhon, Todd Moore
DVD:Criterion (US 2008)


My rating: -

In the weird and wonderful supercinematic world of Canadian cult filmmaker Guy Maddin, personal memory collides with movie lore for a radical sensory overload. This eerie excursion into the Gothic recesses of Maddin’s mad, imaginary childhood is a silent, black-and-white comic science-fiction nightmare set in a lighthouse on grim Notch Island, where fictional protagonist Guy Maddin was raised by an ironfisted, puritanical mother. Originally mounted as a theatrical event (accompanied by live orchestra, Foley artists, and assorted narrators), Brand upon the Brain! is an irreverent, delirious trip into the mind of one of current cinema's true eccentrics. (Cover)

I desperately wanted to love this film. Guy Maddin is such a passionate, unique and wildly imaginative filmmaker that I'm more disappointed with myself than with him that I couldn't. But the eerie and often bizarre beauty of his black-and-white Super-8 images is distorted by such a frenetic editing style with jump zooms and cuts and a constantly jolting and twitching camera that it literally hurts to watch this and the latest Tony Scott appears like something by Bela Tarr in comparison. So sorry. :(

Matthias