Sunday, April 21, 2013

Weekly Round-Up (4/14/13 - 4/20/13)

Execution in Autumn (Lee Hsing) *** - I always feel a bit guilty about not watching enough Chinese films despite the fact that I've seen a bunch of them. Personally, I think I prefer Japanese films just a smidgen a bit. This film is about a spoiled man who murders three people and is sentenced to death and the entire year he has to wait for his execution because, as the title suggests, the Chinese believe that executions should be held in autumn. It gets a tad soapy and preachy in the end, at least for my taste but it's still a compelling little well-acted drama.

Coffy (Jack Hill) ***1/2 - My exposure to blaxploitation continues with Pam Grier. And, man, I didn't expect to like this movie as much as I did. The film is clearly a product of the '70s, so much so that it almost feels like a period piece. It's shamelessly trashy and campy yet, oh, so much fun. The film is clearly not high art. The outrageous situations, outfits, some corny dialogue and plot would not be nearly as fun and enjoyable if it weren't for the legitimately great performance by Pam Grier who wonderfully toes the line between grounding the film and basking in all its trashy glory.

Festen (The Celebration) (Thomas Vinterberg) **** - I've been told that if I have to see one film from Dogme 95 movement, this is it because it's the best. I can't compare but it is a pretty damn great film. Part of what makes it so good is that I actually knew very little of the actual plot going in. All you need to know is that it's about a party/family reunion celebrating the 60th birthday of the patriarch of a well-off family and then one of the adult children drops a bomb shell. Anthony Dod Mantle's digital cinematography makes it look a bit rough-around-the-edges which is part of its appeal. The cast, however, is outstanding.

Festen (The Celebration) (Thomas Vinterberg) **** - I've been told that if I have to see one film from Dogme 95 movement, this is it because it's the best. I can't compare but it is a pretty damn great film. Part of what makes it so good is that I actually knew very little of the actual plot going in. All you need to know is that it's about a party/family reunion celebrating the 60th birthday of the patriarch of a well-off family and then one of the adult children drops a bomb shell. Anthony Dod Mantle's digital cinematography makes it look a bit rough-around-the-edges which is part of its appeal. The cast, however, is outstanding.

1 comment:

YeamieWaffles said...

These all sound like very interesting films buddy, thanks for the round-up as usual.