One of my Triplux goals was to go to the cinema seven times in seven days. Last week, as a respite to a preposterously heavy work schedule, I made sure to make space for copious cinema trips. It was sweet.
The Diving Bell And The Butterfly
Allegedly the most lucrative artsy film in the history of Dublin, Diving Bell is the movie of a novel that my wife loved so very much she gave it away to a friend promptly and I never got to read it. I never am going to read it now. Unless of course I get a stroke that makes me a prisoner in my own body and I have a whole lot of time to do nothing in. This movie depicts what I imagine is the inspirational grandeur of the novel perfectly but there is something missing. Why was Jean-Dominique Bauby able to adapt? I don’t know. The movie never told me. Stupid brilliant movie.
If Wanted was a person, it would have been in college with me, studying computer science and being very insecure. It would have worn trousers that weren’t long enough to cover his ankles and he would have been the best at everything. At programming, at football, at eating sausage sandwiches. It wouldn’t care if you had a girlfriend because he doesn’t want one because he has porn anyway, right? And if you ever went drinking with him and his friends they would be so mad you wouldn’t know what to do.
At night, he talks in his sleep and pleads for his daddy to come home.
This is not a good movie.
If there is a flaw in Hancock, and let me assure you that there are many, it is that the camera keeps moving whenever Charlize Theron is on screen. Slow down there Mr. Peter Berg. I know you want us to acknowledge this cartoon comic book movie has a director but I’d just like to gaze a little longer at the woman Angelina Jolie would like to be if she were human and felt such fleshy things as “want”. This film has the ever-perfect movie-star extraordinaire in Will Smith, indy chic in Jason Bateman and the aforementioned Charlize Valkyrie Theron. It’s is humming along nicely until the last 40 minutes when a bad twist makes the movie end all bad on us.
Charlize Theron is married to an Irishman. Really makes you think.
The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian
We fully expected this to suck. Considering that Neuro and I basically read CS Lewis all day every day, we are hard to please. We actually cover every box of cereal that we buy in photocopies from 16th Century Literature or An Experiment In Criticism so that even over breakfast we are absorbing the Lewisean goodness. On my holiday, I am bringing Narnia. We are fans.
And this movie exceeded our expectations. Sure, it doesn’t capture all the Narnian goodness. And Aslan can never be as magnificent on screen as He is in my mind. But Lucy’s amazing performance alone guarantees that this movie will be worth a trip to the local picturehouse. Even the addition of the Snow Queen was done ok.
We went to see The Commitments as part of the Jameson Films on the Square summer festival. With a live performance from some local music-meddlers, as much whiskey as Zoomy would dare to drink before driving home and gourmet burgers, this was bound to be a success. The outdoor venue, the romantic night sky, the best movie ever made about Dublin. I loved it more than ever. The Irish are the Blacks of Europe, the Dubliners are the blacks of Ireland and the Northsiders are the blacks of Dublin. Pretty much a perfect film.
The Band’s Visit
This is a quiet little film that could have been bombastic. It is a charming little movie that could have been one of those uproarious capers. It is much the better for being understated. Telling the not-very-Wanted-style story of an Egyptian police band that mistakenly show up for a gig at the Arab cultural centre in a rural Israeli town without any Arabs, nevermind Arab cultural centres, it is really about loneliness. You know Zoomy is always going to love loneliness movies. Just wait till you hear what he has to say about movie #7. Loneliness, as Doug Coupland puts it, is the last taboo. Focusing on two main characters, an Israeli restaurateur and the leader of the police band, it uses its solace-style to create space in which we can all remember again that there aren’t really Jews and Arabs; just humans. It is a testament to the quality of this film that it manages to invest such clichés with meaning.
My wife, if asked for her favourite movie, could well choose The Station Agent. The Visitor is written and directed by Tom McCarthy, the man we can thank for that breath of train-and-dwarf related perfection and with The Visitor he crafts another masterpiece. In a week of great films, this was the greatest. It is a poem of a film. Sure, you can mock if for being another one of those stranger arrives and transforms peoples’ lives movies. But it is so much more than this. A beautiful meditation, like The Band’s Visit on loneliness and the power of music, this movie grabs you and draws you in with no special effects, no self-sacrificing lion and no Charlize Theron. But the time flies and you hate when it is over and how it is over because this movie actually reaches up to being a truly profound political rant. I loved it, every single scene. The main character goes to New York to deliver an economics paper. Things happen. I am sure such high praise is a personal thing. It hit all the right notes for me. When you see it, tell me what you think.
Your Correspondent, Says it once and says it loud; He’s black and I’m proud.