Thursday, 26 February 2009

Pie and cake and evil secretaries

Filming is finished for The Front Desk. So is the pie and cake. Both homemade and very edible. But, yes, the film. If I can pull it all together into something resembling sense there's no reason it shouldn't be as mildly interesting as the last one. Maybe even more. This one has 100% more evil secretaries for a start.

Monday, 23 February 2009

The Front Desk starts

The Front Desk starts shooting on Wednesday 25th February in an old abandoned warehouse. All of that was true apart from the bit about the old abandoned warehouse.

Wednesday, 11 February 2009

The wonders of Slumdog

There's a lot to be said for a good fable (or a parable if you're picky). Slumdog Millionaire is wonderful; a strangely uplifting mix of torture, child slavery and game shows. There's heroes, villains,a girl to rescue and a happy ending. It's a fable. It's wonderful. Incredibly simple but completely immersive. Danny Boyle (and everyone else that worked on the film) deserve all the BAFTAs and Oscars they can get their hands on. Propulsive cinematography, perfect music, and everyone dances at the end. I don't usually praise films this much.

I was sceptical when I first heard that Danny Boyle was doing Slumdog. After his horror and sci-fi films (28 Days Later and Sunshine) I thought it would just be his attempt at a relaxing, fluffy film. It turned out to be his best yet.

Monday, 9 February 2009

Film: The Mildly Interesting Secret of Existence

Written and directed by: Chris David Richards
Cast: Gruff Owen Jones, Helen Robbens
Set Design: Samuel Adams


Sunday, 8 February 2009

Jesse James was assassinated. Slowly.

So The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford appeared on my television. All 153 minutes of it. Not that I'm complaining. It was excellent, albeit in a slow and ponderous sort of way. Brad Pitt moods about the place, dressed almost entirely in black, while Casey Affleck gives him murderous looks. There's also a lot of sitting in fields of swaying reeds. Which is nice. It's all held together by commentary on celebrity culture and media influence. There's also a smattering of existentialism (I love existentialism, if you talk about it you are a Clever Person).

The pace is almost dreamily slow. The massive, empty vistas that Andrew Dominik points the camera at seem to weigh on the film, with the resonantly bleak soundtrack helping to keep things sombre. The film isn't afraid to throw metaphors around too (shooting frozen lakes, losing shoes), most of which are related to Brad Pitt's glumness. It all amounts to a wonderfully grand, epic sort of thing that is almost as long as its title. It's a shame then that it was so puzzlingly overlooked at 2008's Oscars. Ah well.