Tag: Beasts of the Southern Wild

Cosmopolis and top films for 2012

After a busy but excellent Christmas, Seema and I hunkered down last night and saw perhaps our last film for 2012; Cosmopolis and you can read my mini musing here


2012 has been an curious cinema going year for me.  I found it difficult to to get out and see many films (study commitments took precedence) and I don’t expect next year to be any easier.  However, I did stumble on a couple of gems  that easily are my “best of 2012” … no other films come close to Leos Carax’s Holy Motors and Benh Zeitlin’s Beasts of the Southern Wild.  These are my top two for 2012 and I can’t split them despite their disparity.  Some films that I have missed that I feel might have expanded my top two are, Michael Haneke’s Amour, and Paul Thomas Anderson’s The Master.  I shall hopefully see them in the new year.

Happy New Year everyone!

Beasts of the Southern Wild – review

On Thursday night I went along to the opening of the New Zealand Film Festival at Auckland’s Civic Theatre. For those who don’t know The Civic Theatre is a large heritage theatre seating over two thousand people in central Auckland, New Zealand. First opened on 20 December 1929, it was reopened in 2000 after a major renovation and conservation effort (yep, got that bit from Wiki). Seeing a film in a large olden style hall is something I haven’t done since I was a teenager, and being spoilt these days with hi-tech audiovisual complexes and home theatres, I was curious to see how the acoustics and and visuals would hold up. Little did I know that the visual and audio onslaught of Beasts of the Southern Wild would be just the film to test it.  This was going to be something special.

Read my review of Beasts of the Southern Wild  here.


My Cannes top five most anticipated films

Cannes 2012 has run its course and as expected has exposed some very interesting looking films. The following are five films shown at Cannes that top my list to see. Add to this list Life of Pi and Prometheus … and I suppose The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, and you have a fairly comprehensive list of my personal must sees for the remainder of 2012.

So at number one is the Palme d’Or winner Amour. Directed by Michael Haneke who made the Oscar Nominated White Ribbon and the chilling Funny Games. He is a master of clipped minimalism, structured and elegant. From all reports this film is well deserved of the Palm D’Or.

Second is the surreal Holy Motors by Leos Carax. I’m not familiar with his work, but by all accounts this is an exceptional film. It’s completely out of left field and appears to be dripping with Lynchian surrealism … and it stars, among others, Kylie Monogue. Odd casting but fascinating nonetheless! The trailer looks stunning and I can’t wait to see it.

Third is Beasts of the Southern Wild. I was a mad fan of Where the Wild Things Are and Pans Labyrinth and this film also explores a child’s cognitive defense from hardship by creating a new reality … it is a theme that for some reason fascinates me.

Fourth is Cosmopolis. A futuristic dystopian thriller. David Cronenberg returns to a genre that he does well. This film has seemed to polarized critics. However, being a Cronenberg fan I can see myself going berko over it. Surprisingly, I think Pattinson is a good choice for the lead. Hopefully I’m right and hopefully its a lot better than Cronenberg’s previous disappointment, A Dangerous Method.

Fifth is Mud. Call it a guilty pleasure but I quite like Matthew McConaughey … I just think he’s very “likable”. Directed by Jeff Nichols (who gave us Shotgun Stories and Take Shelter), this film is a Stand By Me style story concerning an escaped fugitive who befriends two boys. Been getting exceptional reviews.

Other notible films which piqued my interest are:
The Paperboy (yes, I know it’s McConaughey again)
On the Road. What’s not to like … it’s written by Jack Keroac.
Moonrise Kingdom. Looks quirky and has an interesting cast but may be a fizzer as well.
Killing them Softly. Kiwi director Andrew Dominik who directed the exceptional slow burn The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford. Both star Brad Pitt. If this is half as good then it will be worth seeing.