Sunday, November 13, 2005
Saturday, November 12, 2005
Friday, November 11, 2005
Following a tribute where he seemed bored by a series of dull questions, Depp as well as John Malkovich and Samantha Morton introduced The Libertine, the adaptation of a play which mostly acts as a showcase for Depp’s talent, here exploring new territories.
Thursday, November 10, 2005
Wednesday, November 09, 2005
If you've never seen the TV series The Shield or the film Training Day, you might find Dirty original and gritty. Despite a great effort in terms of authenticiy, most of this picture is a mess and somebody should have reminded Cuba Gooding Jr that saying "mutherfucka" every 2 words doesn't make you a more convincing tough guy and actor -- it's like an imitation of a gangster for a boat trip spectacle.
Tuesday, November 08, 2005
ProducerAli Hanson, Sabina's mother and director Sabina Vajraca at the premiere of Back to Bosnia.
Anyone hopelessly in love with Margaret Cho will enjoy Bam Bam and Celeste, a campy romp from the cornfields of Illinois to the streets of New York under the guise of an ugly duckling tale. It's not perfect, but it's a lot of fun.
Monday, November 07, 2005
Talking about fucking, Addiction, a Finnish entry about a woman’s descent into sexual addiction, provided a fresh feminine perspective on the subject. Treated with subtlety and supported by a strong cast, this fine character study avoided gratuitous voyeurism and pathos to focus on the irreversible mechanism of addiction.
Sunday, November 06, 2005
From reading the program and listening to the programmers, The Gigolos, a British comedy about a couple of average looking guys selling their services to old women, promised to be fresh and funny. Featuring a series of dull characters and a frigid narrative, this vaguely amusing film didn’t go anywhere and made me regret not having seen the Desperate Housewives posing next door. Fred Thom
Originally, I wasn’t planning to go see Ripley Underground with Barry Pepper -- of Battlefield Earth fame -- in the title role. While quite fun, the result looks more like the kind of film you would watch on a plane – or video -- than a production made for the big screen; which brings me to the point: “what were the programmers thinking by proudly premiering this film at AFI?” That’s certainly not the kind of entry that increases your credibility on the festival scene. Actors Alan Cumming and Claire Forlani introduced the screening. Fred Thom
Canadian entry Life With My Father started off my Sunday with a meditation on family, the battle between brothers fighting for their father's love, and the loss of dignity that death inevitably brings. Like Barbarian Invasions, director Sebastien Rose shows the Canadian health system in the worst light possible. Though it dragged on a bit, there were some tender scenes of familial love. Also, 3 men living in a dilapidated house with a beautiful woman inevitably brings jealousy and humor. Anji Milanovic
The super- quirky Czech film Wrong Side Up proved to be a lot of fun, from footage of Fidel in Cuba to life in a post-Socialist Czech Republic where men dress up mannequins in their wive's clothes and neighbors pay you to watch them have sex. Actor Ivan Trojan showed his eclectic humor in the face of adversity in a way that makes him totally sympathetic and not totally idiotic--even when he ships himself off to Cuba and not to his girlfriend's house.
Pablo- The Poet's Lives proved tedious. Footage of abandoned mines in Chile coupled with interviews of those who knew him (along with a lot of interviews with people who did not know him but were influenced by him) didn't create a compelling documentary of one of the world's best-loved poets. Some re-created scenes of Pablo's young life just seem out of place. The ultimate goal of filmmaker Dario Baldi is never made clear.
Looking for some real chills? I hadn’t be scared by a horror movie since age 10 and American Haunting scared me from the opening to the end; and by looking at the number of people who left during the screening or jumped in their seats, I wasn’t alone. Do I need to say more?
Saturday, November 05, 2005
Drums, electronica, dancers and Burning Man aficionados had gathered on the AFI rooftop for a party celebrating the premiere of the documentary Burning Man: Beyond Black Rock.
To tell you the truth I hadn’t see so many freaks since Halloween in West Hollywood, but knowing my picture was taken several times at the party, I assume I kinda fit in J That’s also probably the first screening I attended where spectators were asked to keep their clothes on – unfortunately the gang of creepy male bunny rabbits next to me wouldn’t follow the rule.
Pele introduced the film to a full house at Arclight in Hollywood and accepted a City of Los Angeles proclamation naming November 4th as "Pele Day". What followed was a film that will regale soccer lovers with goal after goal and play after play from "The King".