Saturday, September 11, 2010

Quick Film Reviews #2

Ghost World
I'm going to avoid the obvious comparison for this film because it makes me feel like I'm doing it a disservice. I suppose it's a cult film of a sort, but even so Ghost World seems to be much overlooked, even by those who like a bit of late teenage direction/existential-angst. It's ambitions may not be extraordinary, but the film is a wonderfully sharp and well formed piece. It's very well acted, funny and compassionate, but I always thought the ending was also very depressing. Didn't find that quite so much this time, but there's still something to my previous opinion.
The only small thing that does get to me is that the film displays hollywood's inability to cast physically unattractive actresses. Not that there is anything in the story that implies Enid should be, but I'd still like to see how it would play out if she was not so nice to look at.

Little Miss Sunshine
I've seen Little Miss Sunshine twice before from never quite all the way from the beginning. I've also not seen it with Amy laughing her head of at bits of the film. I've never seen someone laugh so much at a horn before. Makes an excellent film even better.
Slight qualm on reflection: is the mother in the film anything more than the conventional harassed but determined and loving mother character?

Aguirre, Wrath of God
On an entirely different note, Werner Herzog's film is a bit like Apocalypse Now if it was set in South America, with Conquistadors rather than Americans and dubbed into German. Klaus Kinski as the self-destructive Aguirre sways about unnervingly, looking at people as if he's sizing up the best place to stab them. I can see its considerable merits - minimalist storytelling, a lush and unrelenting backdrop, a psychotic sense of inevitability, so-on. It reminded me of a shakespeare play at times, even though it's far from wordy; something about the pace of events, the arrangement of characters and the tragic narrative format.
Despite all that, for some reason the film didn't quite click with me. Maybe the "civilised people go mad in jungle" is a little passé, or maybe you just need to be in the right frame of mind. Also I was a little distracted by the how the guy playing the priest looked and acted just like Julian Barrat.


zhromg said...

hi! it's been a longer time... ha

Tim said...

Well hello there Ms K!

zhromg said...

i know it's a bit late but i really enjoy your film reviews! i hope they stopped because you're busy in a good way.

Tim said...

Not so much busy, but I can never seem to keep going with this blog. These are actually just posts copied from my LJ though. I do keep that up, and really, one blog should be more than enough for me.
There are 60-70 films here, if you're interested.

How are you doing, anyway?

zhromg said...

ah! thank you for the link :)
I am doing good. I moved to Saskatoon to do my BFA but am back in my home city for the summer working, which has been pretty great so far! Keeping busy too so far, it seems no matter how much time I free up for myself it gets filled with things almost immediately. Keeps stuff interesting I suppose.