Thursday, September 17, 2015

Love at First Flight (short film, 2015)

This year, I was a team leader for the 48 Hour Film Project. You are assigned a genre, prop, line of dialogue, and a character. In Los Angeles, we started at 7:30 PM on August 7th and finished by 7:30 PM on August 9th. Here is our project:

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Top Films (July & August 2015)

Polytechnique (2009, Denis Villeneuve)
It blew me away.

Io la conoscevo bene/I Knew Her Well (1965, Antonio Pietrangeli)
A light film that really captures the lightheartedness of the sixties.

The Stanford Prison Experiment (2015, Kyle Patrick Alvarez)
The film was low-budget, but featured great acting from the students who portrayed guards and prisoners in an experiment at Stanford. Based on true story, I wish this movie had been around when I was in college. Instead, we watched videos hosted by Philip Zimbardo (the leader of this experiment). Knowing what Philip Zimbardo looks and sounds like, I was a little bit disappointed by Billy Crudup's portrayal of him. The hair and make-up was authentic, but Crudup did not emulate Zimbardo's accent. But for what it was, it was very entertaining and kept me on the edge of my seat, even though I knew the story. 

Irrational Man (2015, Woody Allen)
The mixed reviews have been pretty unfair. Rarely do you get a choice film from a comedic director that explores a moral dilemma. I could see how someone could be disappointed with it, however, I was not. 

L'Homme à l'imperméable/The Man in the Raincoat (1957,  Julien Duvivier)
Duvivier is a master filmmaker. He creates this mystery beautifully. It's highly recommended.

Short film: Café (1990, Gretchen Somerfeld)

Cafe by Gretchen Somerfeld from gretchen somerfeld on Vimeo.

Thursday, July 9, 2015

Top Films (June 2015)
Marie Heurtin/Marie's Story (2014, Jean-Pierre Améris)
The Wild Parrots of Telegraph Hill (2003, Judy Irving)
I'll Do Anything (1994, James L. Brooks)
Kobieta w kapeluszu/Woman in a Hat (1985, Stanislaw Rózewicz)

 Open House (2014, Marisha Mukerjee)
'A'  (1965, Jan Lenica)
Hunger (1974, Peter Foldes)
Picknick mit Weismann (1968, Jan Svankmajer)   
The Marina Experiment (2009, Marina Lutz) Video:

Sunday, June 14, 2015

Top Films (May 2015)
La Drôlesse (1979, Jacques Doillon)
Strong, poignant, strange, this film is probably the heir to Les Dimanches de Ville d'Avray/Sundays and Cybèle (1962). I disagree with the English film title "The Hussy". The main character, Madeleine, is more of a victim. She is naive in some ways because of her age, yet completely lucid.
Bessie (2015, Dee Rees) 
Great biopic of blues legend Bessie Smith.
Rue de l'Estrapade (1953, Jacques Becker)
Would have been trite with a lesser director, but Becker excels and creates a glorious ending.
Les Mauvaises rencontres (1955, Alexandre Astruc)
Definitely the best Astruc film I've seen so far.

The Wolfpack (2015, Crystal Moselle)
Definitely worth seeing. I plan on checking it out again.

Honorable mentions:
Eaux profondes/Deep Water (1981, Michel Deville)
Auto Focus (2002, Paul Schrader)
Antoine et Antoinette (1947, Jacques Becker)
La Marie du port (1950, Marcel Carné)
Le Pont des Arts (2004, Eugène Green)
Les doigts dans la tête/Touched in the Head (1974, Jacques Doillon)
Promène-toi donc tout nu! (1999, Emmanuel Mouret)