Journalist Geoff Edgers wanted to do something with his life–or maybe he just wanted to make a movie. At any rate, he’s decided to try and reunite the Kinks. The band only appear in this trailer on the phone, so one suspects that his quest is a Quixotic one. It does give him an excuse to whip out the guitar and jam through a few Ray Davies songs with Sting, Robyn Hitchcock and Zooey Deschanel, who Squally hopes to god isn’t that quirky in person.
Archive for October, 2009
Rajiv Chandrasekaran’s Imperial Life in the Emerald City was a prizewinning look at where L. Paul Bremer and his cronies got it wrong in trying to rebuild a post-war Iraq. On its way to the big screen, the nonfiction study would appear to have been transformed into an all-action thriller that reunites Matt Damon with his Bourne Supremacy director Paul Greengrass. Fans of subterfuge reeking with testosterone should be delighted by the sheer number of edits in these two minutes. Matt Damon appears to have left his brain in the makeup room in his performance of a WMD sniffer who goes rogue, but at least we have Brendan Gleeson to add a touch of oil to the proceedings.
Michelangelo Antonioni’s fourth feature Le Amiche (1955) fails to offer the bizarre delights or metaphysical headspinning of Blow-Up (1966) or The Passenger (1975). But it is a useful stop on the way, a neat melodrama with the Italian film critic-turned-director sharpening his knife to be used on the throat of the Italian bourgeoisie. The film also finds him using the camera to explore not only urban space, but the relationship between the people and things within that space.
A young Gentile woman claims she was the victim of an anti-Semitic attack on the train. As always, French director Andre Techine looks to motives to explain the violence, which is more emotional than actual. Look for a more subtle consideration of Cache‘s themes.
Artist Sam Taylor-Wood makes her feature debut with this rote look at John Lennon’s youth. The voiceover tells you pretty much what you need to know, and yes, you have seen Kristen Scott Thomas do that thing with her fist to her cheek before. Of note: the sexual crackle between Winston O’Boogie and mum.
Il Divo (2008) may have needed footnotes, but the satirical swipe at Giulio “Prince of Darkness” Andreotti revealed that Italian politics is never dull. In 1978, prime minister Aldo Moro was kidnapped by a terrorist cell known as the Red Brigades. After nearly two months in captivity, he was found dead in the trunk of a car parked between the HQs of the two parties he hoped to reconcile. Il Divo implied that Andreotti may have somehow been complicit in his rival’s death—although this was never proven.
The new DVD Debut is up at VH1.com:
Behind every great horror movie is a bad idea. Like adopting a spooky Russian kid when you’re a recovering alcoholic. Kate (Vera Farmiga) is also trying to rebound after delivering a stillborn child in the film’s messy opening. Soon she suspects that disturbing little Esther may have been ripped straight from Satan’s womb. Maybe it’s the pigtails. As Kate guarantees herself a trip to crazy-town, Esther shows her true colors, doing for movie brats what Jaws did for marine life.
It’s into the land of women for this Spanish film, where a 73-year-old spinster will do anything to keep the maid under her thumb. While the trailer makes it all look sweetness and light, there’s a dark center to the latest from writer-director Miguel Albaladejo (Cachorro).
“There is a cool Islam,” notes author Michael Muhammed Knight at the end of this trailer. “You just have to find it.” His novel The Taqwacores suggested an independent faith that included punk rockers, gays, lesbians and anybody else who might get barred at the mosque doorway. It became the rallying point for Muslims who didn’t feel like they fit in. The rebel subculture has taken on the “taqwacore” title, which fuses the Islamic concept of “God consciousness” with hardcore music. Omar Majeed’s documentary follows the lit phenom as he crosses America with a group of Allah-worshipping rockers who play songs like “Sharia Law in the U.S.A.” The tour continues onto Lahore, where different definitions of “hardcore” are explored.
Oaxaca farmer Andres has been unsuccessful in his efforts to jump the fence into the United States. He ends up cooling his weary heels at a Tijuana supermarket. With each failed attempt, he gets to know the two women who run the place a little better. Friendships are formed. But what’s Andres going to do if he ever makes it to the promised land? Writer-director Rigoberto Perezcano’s feature debut looks like a bittersweet comedy with a topical edge. Mexico, as usual, does a magnificent job of playing itself.