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Thread: KISSES (Lance Daly)

  1. #1
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    KISSES (Lance Daly)

    KISSES (Ireland)

    Pre-teens Dylan and Kylie live next door in a drab, working-class suburb of Dublin. Kylie helps Dylan escape from the clutches of his alcoholic Da shortly after we see the plucky girl hide from a predatory uncle. The abusive and oppressive environment is rendered in black&white. The kids run towards the river where they insists on boarding a barge comandeered by an immigrant who idolizes Bob Dylan. Kisses switches to color as the barge sails towards downtown Dublin. While searching for Dylan's runaway older brother, the kids experience the joys and perils of city life. There's a little romance, a little danger, and an encounter with a Bob Dylan impersonator played by an uncredited Stephen Rea, who had the lead role in writer/director Lance Daly's previous film: The Halo Effect.

    Nothing earthshattering here. Just a perfectly realized, heartfelt ode to youth, to freedom, and to the type of bond forged by people that can transcend whatever ails us. Wonderful job of casting newcomers Shane Curry and Kelly O'Neil and directing their captivating performances. Daly's moving homage to the greatest American singer-songwriter is an added bonus to fans like me. Kisses won the top prize at the Galway and Foyle film festivals. It is currently enjoying a limited theatrical release courtesy of Oscilloscope Pictures.

  2. #2
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    I'll have to see it; showing at the Landmark Shattuck in Berkeley. It has gotten very good reviews, though a highly critical though not damning one in Sight and Sound casts some doubt on the glowing picture. As you know Oscilloscope is making a small mark as an in indie distributor. Their TERRIBLY HAPPY is one of my 2010 faves. Perhaps not only to be compared to ONCE but also to Shane Meadows' SOMERS TOWN.
    Last edited by Chris Knipp; 08-06-2010 at 01:06 AM.

  3. #3
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    For me, the characterizations/performances trump any of the film's weaknesses or limitations. Few will claim KISSES is a masterpiece but I probably have nothing in common with anyone who doesn't have fun with it. Also, I am very fond of this movie because of its heartfelt homage to one of my heroes.
    I took note of Terribly Happy when you first mentioned it. I assume the poster with the rough neck pointing a big gun undersells or underestimates the film it represents.
    Last edited by oscar jubis; 08-06-2010 at 09:56 AM.

  4. #4
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    I can certainly understand how KISSES is likable even though it may be slight and have flaws; but I wish you would try to stop seeing even anticipated critical differences as a matter of personal antipathy. That gives discussions an ad hominem twist that makes communication more difficult.

    You'd have to see TERRIBLY HAPPY to find out whether you like it, but it certainly is not about a big man pointing a pistol. It is a dark comedy, with some violence and also much drollery. Look at the quotes about it on Metacritic and you'll get a better picture than that poster, which is not the Danish one.

    TERRIBLY HAPPY

    American poster:


    Danish poster:

  5. #5
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    I am completely baffled by the last post, Chris. Clearly we have some kind of a communication breakdown here.

    Critical differences??About what? How can we have any critical differences if there isn't a single movie mentioned in the post which we both have seen? Personal antipathy????!!!!!! I have no personal antipathy towards someone who doesn't have fun watching Kisses. Certainly a difference in taste or personal predilections does not result in "antipathy", not antipathy! And how does that have to do with you, who has not seen it???

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    You wrote:
    Few will claim KISSES is a masterpiece but I probably have nothing in common with anyone who doesn't have fun with it.
    Nothing in common with certainly means personal antipathy.

  7. #7
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    Antipathy means to me, having an instinctual, habitual aversion or repugnance for another. The Onion's Noel Murray calls Kisses "dreary". I am looking at the hypothetical statue from exactly the opposite point of view as Mr. Murray. We might as well be looking at different objects. But we are not. And his view or interpretation of it is as valid as mine. To explain myself: I don't feel anything pejorative towards Murray, not aversion or repugnance. Certainly I would perceive him as an "other" in terms of artistic taste or sensibility.An "other" worthy of more curiosity and interest than those standing next to me in front of the statue. I do try to think of those I perceive as different from me with unconditional positive regard, as Carl Rogers taught me.
    Last edited by oscar jubis; 08-06-2010 at 03:37 PM.

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    Good for you, but you are somewhat missing the point. We don't want to discuss Murray, whom we know little or nothing about, though we might want to discuss his review. That is what I meant by saying, let's leave the ad hominem element out of the discussion.

  9. #9
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    I also didn't mean "antipathy" to be that strong but to refer only to feeling the opposite way about one thing.

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