Monday, March 4, 2013

Film Fest, Part II......

Where were we? Ah yes, the New London Winter Film Festival.

Let's jump right in, shall we?

In the interest of full disclosure, I was summoned to dinner with the Brits that Friday night, and therefore was unable to make the Film Fest. So I downloaded the movie from iTunes for $4, and watched it on my laptop. It wasn't quite the same as watching it in grand style on the big screen at the Garde Theater, but at least I didn't miss anything. Except for seeing the movie with 1100 of my best friends. 1100!

What a great movie. I had heard it was good, I had heard it was tense, but I didn't expect it to be quite so funny. Great story, great acting, great pace. So well-balanced and compelling. I kept saying, out loud, to myself, "This is a good movie."

Congrats to all the Argo-nauts, for winning Best Picture.

And while we're at it, "Argo f*ck yourself."

Life of Pi
"Richard Parker!"
That's what I kept yelling at the tv on Oscar night any time anybody from Life of Pi was nominated, was shown on camera, or was mentioned. I think I had the accent down by about the 34th time. And nobody threw anything at me, not once.

I loved this movie. I loved its dreaminess, I loved its effects, I loved its allegorical plot, and I especially loved Pi Patel, as a kid and as a man.

I read -- and loved -- the book when it came out, and thought it would be unfilmable.  But Ang Lee is the man. This is a guy who work with actorly actors like Emma Thompson and Kate Winslet and Hugh Grant in Sense and Sensibility, and Heath Ledger and Jake Gyllenhaal and Michelle Williams in Brokeback Mountain (swoon). And now here he is filming a special effects Bengal Tiger. In 3-D. I'm in thrall. And so happy for his Best Director win.

Anna Karenina
No idea; I didn't go, but I believe things did not end well for ol' Ms. Karenina.

Rust and Bone
This movie kicked my ass. I still don't know if I loved it or hated it.

To paraphrase both Katie and Chris, movies are supposed to have an effect on you. And this one did.

I have always carried the philosophy that movies are a personal, specific moment in time. If you're comfortable and calm and happy, you can bring the movies in, and love them. If you're distracted and agitated and uncomfortable, you won't find them as forgiving. I was hot and my jeans were uncomfortable and I drank too much before the movie started and it was not a great movie-going experience for me.

But Marion Cotillard was amazing. I had only ever seen her in La Vie En Rose in 2007, six years ago, when she was, stunningly, 32, but played a much, much older Edith Piaf. She was brilliant in this movie, too, but the movie was so difficult for me; the characters were so difficult for me.

But hey, movies are supposed to have an effect on you.

And as for the special effects? Not to give anything away but the knocked-off-legs? I haven't read about how director Jacques Audiard pulled that off and I'm not going to; I prefer to believe it was the magic of movies.

The Artist
Oh, what a lovely movie. I love Bérénice Bejo; she's my new girl crush. I love those long arms, swinging around while she was tap-dancing. I really wish I knew how to tap dance so we could do a tap-dancing duet together.

We were laughing afterward, that The Artist won Best Picture for 2011 and Argo won for 2012 -- Hollywood certainly loves itself. And good for them -- who doesn't wish for such an exalted sense of self confidence?

2011 Best Actor Oscar Winner Jean Dujardin was charming and nailed the self-aware mugging of the silent film star. John Goodman -- who is all over the place in this Film Festival -- was pitch-perfect. But for me, the movie belonged to Peppy Miller.

Oh yes, and to Uggie the Doggie.

Moonrise Kingdom
We had a special celebrity guest star visitor for this movie yesterday
. . . Mom! We brought her right up into the balcony and right into the fold and she loved it.

And oh how I loved it too.

I loved Bill Murray and Frances McDormand -- I love everything Frances McDormand does, always. I loved Ed Norton as Scout Master Ward and Tilda Swinton as Social Services, and the three little boys as the pseudo Greek Chorus. but this movie belonged to Suzy and Sam. Those two kids were magical and adorable and delightful. And had good wilderness skills.

What a talent Wes Anderson is. I need to have myself a Wes Anderson Film Fest.

This Film Festival rocks. And New London is loving it.

See you at Sugar Man.


Hsin-Yi said...

Since I missed this whole week, all I can say is: See you at Sugar Man!!!

Beth said...

I too think Life of Pi to be unfilmable. I still think so, not having yet seen it. I actually opted to not see this film when at the theater my last time. Sounds like I miscalcuated! If you say they pulled it off, Ellie, well then they must have. I must now see this! Stat.

And your description of Rust and Bone? Well I'm moving that *right up* to the top of my list!!

I watched Beasts of the Southern Wild Friday night - wow, what a movie. I watched it with my two oldest, who admitedly aren't that old for some of the events of the movie. We were all bawling at the end. (But who wasn't, right?) And, if nothing else, they had a good reminder of how danm good they have it in this life.

Can't wait for more. more. more. You are a top-notch movie critic ;) My personal favorite, without a doubt.


Me, You, or Ellie said...

I love movies. I just want to watch all the movies and forget about everything else in the world that might require attention. Everything is so boring. I echo Beth's sentiments about Pi, I was reluctant to go but now I think we should while it's still in the-YATE-ers.


mom said...

Loved the movie, loved being mentioned in the blog, loved hanging out with you and Bill. love, mom