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Thread: The 2008 MIami Festival's Comment Page

  1. #16
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    Of course not even Citizen Kane is for everyone. That's why I put not-for-everyone between quotation marks.
    That begs the question. Would you write a piece on Citizen Kane and write "Citizen Kane--not for everyone"? Since when did you start caring about how popular your preferred films were?
    Marina and Victor are treated with respect by the filmmakers, not like sad sacks or nerds or peripheral characters used for comic relief as the "butt of the joke".
    But are they like sad sacks or nerds or peripheral characters or butts of a joke? Don't they become something else when put at the center of a film,just like the maids in the 19th-century French novels of the Goncourt brothers? Or like the Fool in Lear etc.?

  2. #17
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    That's a very sharp comment, Chris. You almost have to respect and give a character dimensionality when you give them a protagonic role. Characters like Marina and Victor are seldom put at the center of movies, especially dramas.

    I always wish my preferred films get sufficient exposure so audiences hear about them and have reasonable access to them. The "not for everyone" comment perhaps reflects a certain awareness on my part that several local friends, relatives and acquaintances are asking me which of the over 100 MIFF features they should watch during the 10 days of the fest. One aim of the reviews is that the Miami-based readers should be able to figure out whether each film would be to their liking (or not) based on the review.

  3. #18
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    Summertime in Poland from three distinct, youthful points of view: Tricks

  4. #19
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    This documentary is the definitive film about "the most extraordinary survival story ever":
    Stranded: I Have Come from a Plane That Crashed on the Mountains

  5. #20
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    I just want to say I think Alive! was pretty good. The only trouble was that it had Americans playing Uruguayans, which was a wrong note. But a good documentary is certainly welcome on this event.

    "...as been contracted for broadcast." is a typo. You dropped an H.

  6. #21
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    I don't see how the actors' country of birth is an issue. Perhaps you mean that Alive would be more authentic if spoken in Spanish...But that would mean a smaller audience. My problem with the actors is that they looked healthy and robust. The actual survivors weighed under 100 pounds when rescued and exhibited signs of physical deterioration that were obvious to everyone. They looked worse than Christian Bale in The Machinist but Spano, Hawke and others looked like they were stepping out of Delmonico's. Still, not a bad movie and, like I said, the crash scene (and the avalanche scene, now that I think about it) were aces.

    Jackie Chan's boy Jaycee will have a long career in commercial cinema: The Drummer

  7. #22
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    I thought it was a pretty good movie, not a great movie.
    I don't see how the actors' country of birth is an issue. Perhaps you mean that Alive would be more authentic if spoken in Spanish..
    Of course that was what I meant. It never makes sense for people in a story to be speaking the wrong language for who they are. Sometimes tha author can make you forget. I just saw Betrayed, the play by George Packer at The Culture Project about Iraqis who worked for the US in the Green Zone and then were left out to dry. Mostly they spoke English, but since they were people who loved English and knew it well, you forgot that it didn't make much sense, and once when the two main characters got really mad at each other they broke into Arabic, so that helped. Obviously one of the challenges to making Alive was that you could hardly get a whole bunch of actors to lose 1/3 or 1/2 their body weight for their roles. Delmonico's? YOu mean the ancient New York restaurant?

  8. #23
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    Precisely.
    I went to the press conference that opens the fest today and received my badge. This year you show your badge at least 15 minutes before any screening or event and you go right in. At least that's the plan. Last year they had more press screenings than this year but each correspondent received no more than 10 tickets to films.

  9. #24
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    Sounds better this year. The SFIFF hasn't been that good. They've been making you go an hour early to a press office and wait to get a ticket and then go to the auditorium. And they cut the press screenings to almost none. Lots of screener DVDs, the only compensation. But I liked going to a lot of press screenings where it's quiet, in the mornings. The NYFF is the only good experience I've had. But of course they only show 28 films.

  10. #25
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    I like press screenings because I'm always guaranteed a good seat and a post-screening discussion. Watching a film with an audience provides useful feedback though.
    Gael Garcia Bernal directs his first movie: DEFICIT

  11. #26
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    Roy Andersson's new film is even better than his Cannes-winning previous one: YOU, THE LIVING

  12. #27
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    I saw this in Rome last fall and reviewed it. I can't find my review on this site but it's on mine here.

  13. #28
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    It must have been weird to watch it dubbed into Italian! I'm glad you watched it. I have hope that You, the Living will eventually get distributed here. Songs from a Second Floor was released by New Yorker Films over two years after it premiered at Cannes. I think the new film is more audience friendly because it's not consistently grim like Songs, which has moments of abject cruelty and violence not found in You, the Living. Did you notice, by the way, that certain characters are recurrent, in that they appear on 2 to 4 "vignettes". I failed to mention that. Not an easy film to review because so much hinders on timing, image composition, interplay between background and foreground, visual gags, etc. Anyway, I loved it. I wonder if the songs were also dubbed. The lyrics of two songs sung by women are crucial in the scenes in which they appear (I described both in my review).

    American-made doc about something encouraging happening in Africa: IRON LADIES OF LIBERIA

  14. #29
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    I thought a lot of characters were recurrent and I was surprised you spoke o the movie as if it were just detached vignettes.

    It didn't seem weird at all to be dubbed in Italian. I was in Rome. And I'm used to Italian and that way I could understand it but it still seemed like a foreign movie, since Italian is not my native language. I can't remember about the songs but no subtitles "so much hinders on timing". You don't mean "hinders" you mean "hinges on." I liked it too, I felt it had a unique style, and I liked the singer, who was really cute, which you don't seem to have noticed. There was a lot about relationships. Don't forget his ads, and Ingmar Bergman's high compliment. This kind of movie is a real hard sell anywhere, anywhere but Sweden anyway. It was shown only briefly in a very special cinema in Rome as I mentioned, the Metropolitan on the Via del Corso, which shows un-dubbed foreign films (usually; this was an exception, and one that worked well I thought).

  15. #30
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    Iron Women of Liberia. Shown as part of BBC4's "Why Democracy?" season of films last year. This series:
    * 2.1 Please Vote for Me (China)
    * 2.2 Looking for the Revolution (Bolivia)
    * 2.3 Taxi to the Dark Side (USA)
    * 2.4 In Search of Gandhi (India)
    * 2.5 Dinner with the President (Pakistan)
    * 2.6 For God, Tsar and Fatherland (Russia)
    * 2.7 Iron Ladies of Liberia (Liberia)
    * 2.8 Egypt: We are Watching You (Egypt)
    * 2.9 Bloody Cartoons (Denmark)
    * 2.10 Campaign! The Kawasaki Candidate (Japan)
    . Also shown February 5, 2008 at the Oakland Museum as part of Black History Month.
    Last edited by Chris Knipp; 03-03-2008 at 11:07 AM.

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