Aug 242014


August already…where did the time go? I don’t know about your neck of the woods, but there hasn’t been much to see at the cinema here. I’ve been watching a lot of TV and reading pieces about all the good things the rest of you have seen. After the jump a bit from MIFF, a bit of pre-TIFF and some really interesting writing.

Obvious Child was the film I was most disappointed at missing by not attending at the recent Melbourne International Film Festival (MIFF). The reviews out of MIFF were very positive, including this one by Ruth Richards. Ruth says, “Obvious Child is about navigating life, exploring various types of relationships (friends, lovers, parental)”, and gives the film a perfect 10. Obvious Child gets a limited release in Australia on October 2nd (yay!).

Winner of the Jury Prize in the Un Certain Regard section at the 2014 Cannes Film Festival, Force Majeure is another film on my must-see list that played at MIFF. Cam Williams reviewed the film at the fest and called it “a comedy of passive aggressiveness, a scathing satire of masculinity, delivered with Kubrickian unease”. Wow..

A Most Wanted Man starring the late, great Phillip Seymour Hoffman is a film I just haven’t been able to bring myself to see. I admire Hoffman, but there was just something so beige about the trailer. Jason Di Rosso’s review indicates that the trailer is quite representative of the final product. Can anyone argue strongly in favour of the film?

A film which I saw earlier in the year which didn’t work so well for me was Frank. The film is slowing making its way around the world and has recently hit Toronto. Ryan McNeil has posted some thoughts at The Matinee, where he has also questioned its North American release strategy. It’s funny that Ryan comments that the film was “basically dumped by it’s North American Distributors”, because here I think it was one of the most predominately advertised indies in some time. “Frank” the character was popping up at events and on mainstream TV shows, and it felt like the trailer was everywhere. I have no idea how much it made here though, so who knows if it helped?

Talking about Toronto, the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) is less than 2 weeks away. Typically a launching pad for many of the “award films”, the festival will screen almost 300 feature films. Navigating the programme can be a little daunting, but thankfully there’s help out there. Indiewire have put together a quite useful day-by day guide, while BlogTO have a list of the 10 movies getting the biggest buzz in advance of the festival. I also really like this guide at Scene Creek by Adriana Floridia, who has broken her suggestions down by programme section.

Sure to be a highlight at TIFF is Xavier Dolan’s Mommy, the best film I saw at this year’s Sydney Film Festival. Dolan will be attending TIFF in support of the film (he also stars in another TIFF film, Elephant Song), as will actress Suzanne Clément. This review from MIFF by Simon Berardino is the best writing I’ve read on the film so far. I’d give the film an extra half a star, but I can’t argue with Simon’s articulate views.

Finally, here’s the newest trailer for creepy thriller Nightcrawler, which will première at TIFF. This film looks nuts, where do I sign up?

By Sam McCosh

 Posted by at 23:09