Tag: Mud

Mud

Film two on my Film Fest list was Jeff Nichols’ Mud. This has been a while coming but finally I saw this last Saturday with Seema. We both saw Nichols’ previous film, Take Shelter, a few months back and loved it. Mud has a similar tone and pace to Take Shelter although its subject matter is quite different. I won’t go into the plot as you can pretty much gather this from trailer below. Suffice to say that this is an excellent film that had me engrossed from start to finish. Superbly shot, timed, with authentic attention given to its characters. Worth also mentioning the excellent acting by the two main protagonists Ellis (Tye Sheridan) and Mud (Matthew McConaughey). Perhaps the slightly over explained and contrived ending was the only let-down … I would’ve preferred more mystery. But this is a minor quibble in what was a suberb film. I cant wait to see what Nichols comes up with next.

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Tonight’s NZIFF film is Mistaken for Strangers. Will report on this tomorrow hopefully.

NZ International Film Fest … here we go!

At last! The NZ International Film Festival begins this Thursday. Here is their website. I’ve managed to shoe-horn in nine films to see. They are:

North By Northwest – Hitchcock’s classic. I’ve never seen it and it’s playing at the Civic … a safe bet!
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Mud – I loved Nicol’s Take Shelter (still yet to see Shotgun Stories). I think McConaughey is great, an actor who’s talent has been tarnished by his fame. Been looking forward to this one for ages. Seema and I are both going assuming we find a baby sitter that night.
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Mistaken for Strangers – I think I can quite safely say that The National is my favourite band at the mo. This is a doco about the band, made by Matt’s (lead singer) metal-head brother, who incidentally hates indie rock. Makes for an interesting start. This doco could go pear shaped, but will be interesting regardless.
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Computer Chess – I am going to this entirely based on the very appealing trailer, and a few recommendations. A faux doco set in the seventies about, yep, you’ve guessed it, Computer Chess.
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The Perverts Guide to Ideology – “We are responsible for our own dreams”. Sounds like an interesting premise for this doco. Watching academic Slavoj Zizek is both comical and fascinating, and if his last psychoanalytical exposé on Cinema is any indication, then this will be a very interesting, if somewhat hard to keep up with, experience.
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Francis Ha – I don’t know too much about this one apart from its trailer and a few recommendations. A black and white comedy with Greta Gerwig directed by Noah Baumbach … gotta be good.
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The Bling Ring – It’s Sofia Copola, so why not. I’ll have to put aside my dislike for all things, like, Valley, like, you know.
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Only Lovers Left Alive – Vampire films are everywhere now, but there is a huge difference between the utter shite that is the Twilight series and Alfredson’s superb Let the Right One In. I’m trusting that Jarmusch is firmly in the right camp. Tilda Swinton is a mesmerising actress to boot.
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To the Wonder – Seema and I finish off with a bit of Malick. His Tree of Life masterpiece is on my all time favs list. If this is half as good then I’ll be happy.
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I’ll be back with my thoughts on them as they happen … ooh, so excited!

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.