Tuesday 31 July 2012

Parker Posey Film Festival 2012

Scream 3

If you have been following my blog for a bit, you will know by now that I am a major fan of film festivals. The vibrant atmosphere, the opportunity to see so many different and unusual films in a short period of time with a passionate audience...  After Cannes earlier this month, I am hoping to cover as many as possible in the next few months, with Frightfest and the LFF coming up soon. And now news have emerged of a Parker Posey Film Festival taking place on the 15th of September this year. As far as I am concerned, the fact that there is a Parker Posey Film Festival is instantly making the world a better place.

Tuesday 24 July 2012

Who Likes A Surprise? The Imposter!

Everybody likes a surprise, and particularly film fans. Over the recent year, the trend of the "Surprise" film has really taken off in film festivals, be it the London Film Festival, Big Screen last year, Secret Cinema and even the venerable Venice Film Festival. Based on this, a distribution company has recently used this as a marketing tool and a clever way of drumming up some interest for their new film, as I discovered at a "surprise" screening I was invited to last week.

Dark Horse - Todd Solondz Lite...

By now most of you will have either seen Dark Horse or skipped it due to so so reviews, but as a Solondz fan, I made the effort to see it recently. Well as the main character constantly drinks diet coke throughout the film, a good way to sum up the latest offering from our New Jersey depressive,is that it's like a diet version of what we have been used to from previous Solondz films.

Sunday 22 July 2012

The Witch Who Came From The Sea

Some films are just so random that you do wonder what the director was smoking at the time. The Witch Who Came From The Sea is one of them, but not for the most obvious reasons.

In it, a woman in a seaside town suffers some terrible and vivid hallucinations about some graphic murders involving men. In the meantime, some graphic murders involving men are taking place. Surely the two are not related, SURELY?

FilmLand Empire: Refocused

Hello, dear readers! When I started this blog a year and a half ago, I certainly did not expect to last that long, since I am the kind of person who gives up everything I start so I am very pleased with the way it has been going. With the summer being traditionally a slower time for film news (well for independent cinema anyway, not blockbusters!), and having recently done the top 20 film challenge listing my favourite films, I have given my blog some thoughts decided to tighten up its focus.

Wednesday 18 July 2012

Top 20 Films Challenge: The Reserve List And Comments

Having taken a few days off writing after my epic interblogs film challenge alongside Cinemart, I still cannot quite leave it to rest. While the top 10 was easy to draw, I struggled with the second half, and many films which were considered did not quite make it. It was as easy a decision to make as being presented with a litter of kittens and asked to choose which one will live and which one will be drowned.

Saturday 14 July 2012

Top 20 Films Challenge #1: INLAND EMPIRE (2006)

So INLAND EMPIRE, not Inland Empire, INLAND EMPIRE, I am not shouting at you, this is how the title goes, in block capitals. In retrospect, my top film should have been easy to guess, I did name my blog after it!

In INLAND EMPIRE, actress Nikki Grace (Laura Dern) sees reality and fiction blur on the set of her new film, as echoes of a previous and cursed attempt to film the same story emerge.

Friday 13 July 2012

Top 20 Films Challenge #2: The Thin Red Line (1998)

We have very nearly reached the top! The Thin Red Line is quite simply, the biggest shock I have ever had in a cinema. And while it finds itself runner-up to a number 1 who is where it is for very different reasons, I will never forget what an intense experience the viewing of this film was.

In The Thin Red Line, we follow a group of American soldiers during the battle of Guadalcanal in the Pacific during WW2.

Thursday 12 July 2012

Top 20 Films Challenge #3: Law Of Desire (1987)

Nobody does passion like the Spanish, and nobody does better films in Spain than Pedro Almodovar. So one of his films logically finds its spot on my list, Law of desire, a film I adore with all the passion and fury of a latin lover.

In Law of Desire, we are thrown into a complex web of desire and unrequited love between film director Pablo (Eusebio Poncela), Miguel (Juan Molina), the man he loves but who cannot help himself not loving him back and Antonio (Antonio Banderas), who develops an unhealthy obsession over him.

Wednesday 11 July 2012

Top 20 Films Challenge #4: Ghost World (2001)

We shall momentarily leave the 80's for a film that features Steve Buscemi. My list would not have been complete without him.

In Ghost World, best friends Enid (Thora Birch) and Rebecca (Scarlett Johansson), having just graduated from high school, are about to reluctantly face the grown-up world.

Tuesday 10 July 2012

Top 20 Films Challenge #5: Crimes Of Passion (1984)

Staying comfortably in the murky waters of neon lit 80's alternative cinema, Crimes Of Passion at number 5. The French title is so much better by the way, (a rarity, from the country which gave us The Teeth of the Sea for Jaws!): The Nights and Days of China Blue.

In Crimes of Passion, Joanna Crane is a cold, workaholic and divorced fashion designer by day. By night however, she becomes China Blue, a hooker who helps her clients live out their fantasies as well as her own, in a world of pink and blue neon lights. She attracts the attention of sexually frustrated Bobby Grady (John McLaughlin) whose is married to a frigid wife, as well as those of a demented preacher (Anthony Perkins).

Monday 9 July 2012

Top 20 Films Challenge #6: Cruising (1980)

I first saw Cruising at 17, attracted by the cheap thrills its subject matter promised. I remember not being particularly impressed by it and found the whole thing a little dull and very dated, missing a lot of its subtleties that I only appreciated later on after some multiple viewings.

In Crusing, police officer Steve Burns (Al Pacino) goes undercover in the gay leather scene of New York City to catch a serial killer who is preying on its revelers.

Saturday 7 July 2012

Top 20 Films Challenge #7: Videodrome (1983)

Probably a fairly obvious choice, just like number 8 before it, The Thing. But how could Videodrome not feature in my list at a high place, a film that has fascinated me ever since I saw some stills of it as an impressionable child.

In Videodrome, Max Renn (James Woods), a cable tv programmer always in search of some more extreme material, gets more than he bargained for when he is exposed to Videodrome, and sees the fabric of reality collapse around him as a conspiracy of mind control unfolds.

Thursday 5 July 2012

Top 20 Films Challenge #8: The Thing (1982)

Not exactly the most original pick but yet again, this is my personal list, free of any kind of influence, and The Thing is by far my favourite horror film of all times, absolutely flawless and terrifying.

In The Thing, scientists in an isolated station in the Antarctic are stalked and slayed by an alien entity which can consume and replicate its victims, allowing it to remain unnoticed...

Wednesday 4 July 2012

Top 20 Films Challenge #9: Thirst (2009)

Finally an Asian title in my list. I do lament its lack of variety somehow but I wanted to be honest and put my favourite 20 films, not a list carefully designed to show off a vast filmic knowledge.

In Thirst, a failed scientific experiment to find the cure for a virus goes terribly wrong and sees the only surviving guinea pig, an idealist priest, afflicted with a terrible thirst for human blood. And it all goes from bad to worst when he embarks on a murderous affair with the bored wife of an old friend.

Tuesday 3 July 2012

Top 20 Films Challenge #10: Sister Act (1992)

We are now entering the second half on my top 20, as part of our interblogs film challenge alongside Cinemart, and at number 10, Sister Act. Oh shush you, yes I know, Sister Act. If happiness was a bottle, Sister Act would be filled with fizzy soda that you shake and shake until it explodes, drenching you with bubbles of joy.

Sister Act has Whoopy Goldberg as Deloris Van Cartier, a lounge singer in Reno, who, having witnessed a murder committed by her mobster boy-friend, must be hidden by the police for her own protection before the trial. She finds herself in the place where she is deemed the least likely to be found, an inner city convent in San Francisco. Needless to say, her outrageous personality clashes with the strict rules of the Mother Superior (Maggie Smith).

Monday 2 July 2012

Top 20 Films Challenge #11: Full Moon In Paris (1984)

Or The nights of the Full Moon as the French title goes, omitting Paris as if it was so obvious to the French that any worthwhile story can only take place in their capital.

In Full Moon In Paris, Louise (Pascale Ogier), is torn between a life of suburban stability with lover Rémi (Tchéky Karyo), and a life of independence, parties and fleeting romance in Paris with other men, Bastien (Christian Vadim), Octave (Fabrice Luchini)...