Never Coming to a Theater Near You - Arthouse Cinema 2019

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Ten years ago Ilya Khrzhanovsky began to shoot a feature biopic of Nobel-winning physicist Lev Landau, #DAU, in a Ukrainian laboratory. Today in Paris he unveiled 12 feature films from what’s ballooned into a “vast collaborative experiment” ☞ https://t.co/1XPSSUCArr pic.twitter.com/toPFJdyK74

— Sight & Sound (@SightSoundmag) January 24, 2019

Acting Crazy (Instrumental) (jed_), Thursday, 24 January 2019 22:09 (eight months ago) link

Outsiders thought that the director had gone mad and that Dau would never be seen in public. That is not the case. Provocative, demented, sometimes simply tiresome, the Dau films are the strangest cultural artifacts you’re likely to encounter any time soon.

Acting Crazy (Instrumental) (jed_), Thursday, 24 January 2019 22:20 (eight months ago) link

two months pass...

An Elephant Sitting Still is a very sad artifact, and mostly a waste of four hours.

a Mets fan who gave up on everything in the mid '80s (Dr Morbius), Sunday, 24 March 2019 05:32 (six months ago) link

The two big central episodes of La Flor, 3 and 4, are meaty and well constructed enough to carry the load, but lol at how slight episodes 1, 5 and 6 are, and at the length of the credits sequence. Lot to chew on.

Frederik B, Sunday, 24 March 2019 23:10 (six months ago) link

1 was slight but has a couple of great moments. I liked 6 a lot, especially as a culminating portrait of the actresses. I could have done without 5, for sure.

Simon H., Monday, 25 March 2019 00:31 (six months ago) link

also 2 is a pretty decent musical!

Simon H., Monday, 25 March 2019 00:54 (six months ago) link

The songs a really good, and it might be the best acted of them all. Pilar Gamboa especially! That final recording scene

Frederik B, Monday, 25 March 2019 10:08 (six months ago) link

Yeah, she's fantastic in that one. And the "ending" is a hoot.

Simon H., Monday, 25 March 2019 18:40 (six months ago) link

Part 1 might be the most aesthetically wild, that long, almost Dardenne-like shot at the beginning, and the fake soundscape.

Frederik B, Monday, 25 March 2019 20:41 (six months ago) link

I'm perversely excited for viewing 2, esp since I missed the second half of part 3 the first time

Simon H., Monday, 25 March 2019 21:52 (six months ago) link

Oh, lol, the spy stuff? That takes a looong time, but the fourth flashback one is really, really, good, almost documentary-like.

I think next time I watch it, I'll split it in eight, like it's split with Intervalo's, and then watch it over a couple of weeks.

Frederik B, Monday, 25 March 2019 22:13 (six months ago) link

I liked Birds of Passage well enough, but it's no Embrace of the Serpent, and I was sympathetic to Mike D'Angelo's complaint: "Standard-issue drug-war melodrama, featuring not one but two Hotheaded Impulsive Johnny-Boy-Style Sidekicks Who Ruin Everything."

a Mets fan who gave up on everything in the mid '80s (Dr Morbius), Thursday, 28 March 2019 02:42 (six months ago) link

I thought maybe i was being too hard on the third act, then the Borgia matriarch had TWO Pieta poses in the last 15 minutes.

a Mets fan who gave up on everything in the mid '80s (Dr Morbius), Thursday, 28 March 2019 17:44 (six months ago) link

"Standard-issue drug-war melodrama, featuring not one but two Hotheaded Impulsive Johnny-Boy-Style Sidekicks Who Ruin Everything."

yeah this is distinctly not otm

recriminations from the nitpicking woke (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Thursday, 28 March 2019 18:10 (six months ago) link

It's like he stuck to the script and avoided rhythm, staging, and lack of melodrama.

recriminations from the nitpicking woke (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Thursday, 28 March 2019 18:10 (six months ago) link

The melodrama was low-key compared to the US template, but it was there. The first guy, Moises, was totally Johnny Boy.

Loved the mirrored shades on Anibal.

a Mets fan who gave up on everything in the mid '80s (Dr Morbius), Thursday, 28 March 2019 18:21 (six months ago) link

the first guy, Moises, was totally Johnny Boy.

So what, though? No director can make a drug picture without melodrama, and Moises is out of the picture in the last hour -- distinctly not Scorsese.

recriminations from the nitpicking woke (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Thursday, 28 March 2019 18:23 (six months ago) link

oh it's no slavish imitation, but the underlying vibe was more familiar than i expected.

a Mets fan who gave up on everything in the mid '80s (Dr Morbius), Thursday, 28 March 2019 18:30 (six months ago) link

i agree. it was a decent rendition of a very familiar (even overfamiliar) story, with some local color. a lot of these films start out in a more ethnographic mode to establish their "realism" and then adhere increasingly to a genre template as they go on; this was definitely the case here. it wasn't a bad movie by any means, but nothing special either.

affects breves telnet (Gummy Gummy), Thursday, 28 March 2019 18:35 (six months ago) link

Violently disagree with the condescension of "some local color," no offense. It was steeped in the mores of this tribe, like Embrace of the Serpent.

recriminations from the nitpicking woke (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Thursday, 28 March 2019 18:37 (six months ago) link

With their two feature films, these directors have made indigenous politics their specialty. That's way more than local color.

recriminations from the nitpicking woke (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Thursday, 28 March 2019 18:39 (six months ago) link

if it was sto stepped in the mores of the tribe, why did the narrative play out like nearly every rise-and-fall-of-drug-lord story i've seen?

i'm not saying the local angle was irrelevant, just that it didn't really prompt a major shift in the standard template.

i don't think it's any more condescending than saying some amerindie neo-noir set in "southie" has some "local color."

affects breves telnet (Gummy Gummy), Thursday, 28 March 2019 18:48 (six months ago) link

also, no violence in this thread, please.

affects breves telnet (Gummy Gummy), Thursday, 28 March 2019 18:49 (six months ago) link

the indigenous/folkloric context is what makes the film, no doubt

a Mets fan who gave up on everything in the mid '80s (Dr Morbius), Thursday, 28 March 2019 19:00 (six months ago) link

when a writer uses "local color," it suggests the story is told from the non-color POV, and this is decidedly not, hence my admiration for the degree to which the directors create an immersive experience.

recriminations from the nitpicking woke (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Thursday, 28 March 2019 19:02 (six months ago) link

it's certainly what distinguishes it!

i didn't mean it was "only" local color -- just that it partook of a common strategy, which is to kind of immerse the audience in an ethnographic spectacle early on, gradually developing a conventional plot out of that. it's a good way to grab an audience and, again, to stake a claim on a kind of realism, even though the film departs from realism in a number of respects as it goes on, both in terms of heavily symbolically-laden things, some very stylized locations and scenes, and above all by basically hewing to a familiar (transcultural) story.

xpost

we both used the word "immersive"--although i don't know that this really applies to the whole film.

affects breves telnet (Gummy Gummy), Thursday, 28 March 2019 19:04 (six months ago) link

i don't know how to distinguish it being told from one POV or another.... certainly the main characters (save one) were all indigeneous, but the filmmakers aren't, to my knowledge. seems like a complex mix.

affects breves telnet (Gummy Gummy), Thursday, 28 March 2019 19:05 (six months ago) link

Here's my review, which doesn't address every one of our points, granted.

recriminations from the nitpicking woke (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Thursday, 28 March 2019 19:07 (six months ago) link

With their two feature films, these directors have made indigenous politics their specialty. That's way more than local color.

― recriminations from the nitpicking woke (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), 28. marts 2019 19:39 (two hours ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

They've made four, and while I haven't seen 'Wandering Shadows', 'The Wind Journeys' is very much worth watching.

Frederik B, Thursday, 28 March 2019 21:40 (six months ago) link

This is Gallego's first co-directing credit afaik; previously producer and other roles I think

a Mets fan who gave up on everything in the mid '80s (Dr Morbius), Thursday, 28 March 2019 22:35 (six months ago) link

yeah obv I'm generous w/credit

recriminations from the nitpicking woke (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Thursday, 28 March 2019 23:30 (six months ago) link

For London ilxors, Janbal, my favorite film of 2017 is playing the Barbican next week: https://www.bfi.org.uk/news-opinion/sight-sound-magazine/features/contemporary-iranian-cinema-poetry-in-motion-janbal-dragon-arrives

Frederik B, Tuesday, 9 April 2019 13:06 (six months ago) link

thanks, will check it out

devvvine, Tuesday, 9 April 2019 13:09 (six months ago) link

two weeks pass...

Long Day's Journey into Night is quite somethin'. The "dream" half is more lucid than the "real" one. Like Frederik, I too may prefer Bi Gan's debut.

recriminations from the nitpicking woke (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Wednesday, 24 April 2019 11:31 (five months ago) link

Caught a decent chunk of the El Pampero Cine retro here, including La Flor round 2 (though I ended up missing a big chunk again due to work commitments...sigh). Historias Extraordinarias was cool but felt like a dry run for the former, loved the novelistic, 90%-narration style though. and The Gold Bug was wonderfully scrappy.

Simon H., Wednesday, 24 April 2019 11:38 (five months ago) link

The Gold Bug really is funded through a - Danish - program where two directors had to pair up on a project, even though they had nothing in common. I love the way they made it work as the whole point of the film.

Frederik B, Wednesday, 24 April 2019 11:42 (five months ago) link

yeah it could/should have been precious and irritating but had more than enough going on to prevent that from ever setting in.

Simon H., Wednesday, 24 April 2019 11:48 (five months ago) link

Long Day's Journey into Night is fuckin' ponderous... Lincoln Center audience gave a helpless laugh of mystification at the cut to end credits, then stood in the lobby reading the Times review placard for help.

a Mets fan who gave up on everything in the mid '80s (Dr Morbius), Monday, 29 April 2019 00:32 (five months ago) link

aw man i was kinda stokin myself up for seeing that on the theory that it would be trippy and disorienting, but ponderous is my least fave thing in cinema maybe

|Restore| |Restart| |Quit| (Doctor Casino), Monday, 29 April 2019 00:34 (five months ago) link

The first half verges on it, the second half doesn't.

recriminations from the nitpicking woke (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Monday, 29 April 2019 00:39 (five months ago) link

"This is the film the cool kids like."

zama roma ding dong (Eric H.), Monday, 29 April 2019 02:41 (five months ago) link

cool kids are watching the three-hour Marvel thing

recriminations from the nitpicking woke (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Monday, 29 April 2019 02:51 (five months ago) link

It is trippy and disorienting. I dislike trippy and disorienting.

"fucking ponderous" was a Casey Kasem tribute

a Mets fan who gave up on everything in the mid '80s (Dr Morbius), Monday, 29 April 2019 11:58 (five months ago) link

two months pass...

currently touring the US: Patrick Wang's "sprawling, Altmanesque comedy" A Bread Factory; I see it in Brooklyn on Saturday.

https://www.slantmagazine.com/film/a-bread-factory-part-one-and-two/

https://www.jonathanrosenbaum.net/2019/05/55142/

a Mets fan who gave up on everything in the mid '80s (Dr Morbius), Wednesday, 10 July 2019 17:07 (three months ago) link

His married-gays drama is one of the decade's best.

TikTok to the (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Wednesday, 10 July 2019 18:11 (three months ago) link

four weeks pass...

i'm about halfway through La Flor -- the 13.5-hour Mariano Llinás curio that the NYT headlined as "Four Actresses in Search of a Movie" -- and it's more entertaining than I would've expected, and frequently looks great.

https://www.slantmagazine.com/film/la-flor/

a Mets fan who gave up on everything in the mid '80s (Dr Morbius), Wednesday, 7 August 2019 18:24 (two months ago) link

(there is a dull hour here and there)

a Mets fan who gave up on everything in the mid '80s (Dr Morbius), Wednesday, 7 August 2019 18:25 (two months ago) link

just booked tickets, how do you feel having seen the whole thing?

devvvine, Thursday, 15 August 2019 10:22 (two months ago) link

after tonight i'll know

a Mets fan who gave up on everything in the mid '80s (Dr Morbius), Thursday, 15 August 2019 10:41 (two months ago) link

You're in for some great stuff on the final night (and one more dull hour imo)

Simon H., Thursday, 15 August 2019 10:43 (two months ago) link

i would've preferred less than a 13-day span, but it's the only way i could do it

a Mets fan who gave up on everything in the mid '80s (Dr Morbius), Thursday, 15 August 2019 17:54 (two months ago) link

It was often cute, often very annoying.

a Mets fan who gave up on everything in the mid '80s (Dr Morbius), Friday, 16 August 2019 03:53 (two months ago) link

I liked his last feature quite a lot more; that was a focused 4 hours

a Mets fan who gave up on everything in the mid '80s (Dr Morbius), Friday, 16 August 2019 04:21 (two months ago) link

two weeks pass...

Went to see Bait yesterday and totally loved it: https://www.baitfilm.co.uk. Definitely recommend it if never comes to a cinema near you. The curious technicalities of how it was filmed and its odd style very much worked for me.

brain (krakow), Saturday, 31 August 2019 12:42 (one month ago) link

oh that looks great! thanks for the tip. it's on all week here.

Funky Isolations (jed_), Saturday, 31 August 2019 23:03 (one month ago) link

really excited to see this now!

Funky Isolations (jed_), Saturday, 31 August 2019 23:29 (one month ago) link

Brilliant. It was the GFT I saw it at on Friday.

Just saw Mark Kermode's rave review and I'd pretty much agree. Great to see it getting high profile praise. I was going to say more above, but couldn't get the words together.

brain (krakow), Sunday, 1 September 2019 09:41 (one month ago) link

I'm going tomorrow, they always seem to stick the interesting stuff on screen 3 tho

or something, Sunday, 1 September 2019 10:20 (one month ago) link

I used to dislike GFT3 because of the smaller screen size, but I've come to appreciate it. It feels a lot darker in there when the lights go down, so it's more intimate and easy to get properly lost in the film, and I wonder if the sound and screen/projection quality are maybe better than the older screens, though I don't know if I'm just imagining that? Should try to get one of the Doors Open Day tours and find out.

brain (krakow), Sunday, 1 September 2019 10:42 (one month ago) link

Bait isn’t coming to dundee for a couple of weeks - looking forward to it. Also, does anyone know if Leto is any good?

Bidh boladh a' mhairbh de 'n láimh fhalaimh (dowd), Sunday, 1 September 2019 12:38 (one month ago) link

(Just because I can catch it at the same time, not because it’s subject to this thread)

Bidh boladh a' mhairbh de 'n láimh fhalaimh (dowd), Sunday, 1 September 2019 12:39 (one month ago) link

Leto is quite okay, but I'd watch Bait instead. I haven't seen Bait though, missed it at Berlin, and have been kicking myself about it ever since.

Frederik B, Sunday, 1 September 2019 13:21 (one month ago) link

Leto is on mubi atm

Funky Isolations (jed_), Sunday, 1 September 2019 13:51 (one month ago) link

Bait was, indeed, very good and unique. Because of the length of the reels of film (around 28 seconds per reel fwiw) it means that every shot has to serve a purpose or be "chosen" in a way that's particular to this kind of form. I don't think they always succeed but it's fascinating to watch as craft. It's like a silent film that isn't silent, in one way, but in another way it's more like each shot is the frame of a comic book than a moving picture in any other film of the last 80-90 years. It's interesting to think about with regard to something like La Jetee too although it would take me a while to tease that idea out.

I have some issues with the ending. *SPOILERS* (sort of) but was that really required? It didn't seem convincing but rather than seeming melodramatic it just seemed unnecessary. How high are the stakes that you need to do that because the film was already unique and compelling enough that he didn't have to go there. I'd have been happy enough for Martin just to get his boat. There's no need for a death because it's a movie trope that the film did not require.

Still, what an achievement. The things that human artists get up to, eh? I mean they had one camera and every 28 seconds of shooting they'd, presumably, have to take the camera into a completely sealed (from light) space to load the next reel and get the finished one into a can, or whatever. Is this correct? In some of the shots the image looked Solarised too, which two points (krakow) you'd have more knowledge of than me.

Funky Isolations (jed_), Wednesday, 4 September 2019 22:32 (one month ago) link

I have to say also that this screening in cinema 2 was quite busy, which was great!

Funky Isolations (jed_), Wednesday, 4 September 2019 22:34 (one month ago) link

Screen 3 in the gft is my favourite even though it replaced Cafe Cosmo that I designed the refurb for about 12 years ago when it was dark and had those lights that looked like Zoetropes.

Funky Isolations (jed_), Wednesday, 4 September 2019 22:40 (one month ago) link

the leather seats make a racket in 3

самокритика me, daddy (||||||||), Wednesday, 4 September 2019 22:46 (one month ago) link

they don't now, they are nice and soft.

Funky Isolations (jed_), Wednesday, 4 September 2019 22:47 (one month ago) link

two weeks pass...

I recommend the Serbian The Load, set in and around Kosovo and Belgrade in 1999. A film about genocide that avoids directly putting it on camera.

a Mets fan who gave up on everything in the mid '80s (Dr Morbius), Friday, 20 September 2019 15:23 (one month ago) link

I enjoyed Bait - the light in it was beautiful.

Bidh boladh a' mhairbh de 'n láimh fhalaimh (dowd), Friday, 20 September 2019 15:25 (one month ago) link

yo can you guys tell me what movies to see at this fest my friend won a pass to https://viff.org/Online/default.asp

flopson, Friday, 27 September 2019 23:05 (three weeks ago) link

dardennes & parasite obv

johnny crunch, Saturday, 28 September 2019 00:51 (three weeks ago) link

the lighthouse! also looking forward to seeing Little Joe

Dan S, Saturday, 28 September 2019 00:57 (three weeks ago) link

I could never look forward to something with Ben Whishaw in it.

What a ridiculous clusterfuck of totally uncool jokers (jed_), Saturday, 28 September 2019 01:26 (three weeks ago) link

lol, I do really want to see it

Dan S, Saturday, 28 September 2019 01:45 (three weeks ago) link

a friend of mine referred to him as Ben "action-man-eyes" Whishaw and when you notice it there's no way back

What a ridiculous clusterfuck of totally uncool jokers (jed_), Saturday, 28 September 2019 02:02 (three weeks ago) link

don't know anything about "action man eyes" but it sounds kind of hot

Dan S, Saturday, 28 September 2019 02:23 (three weeks ago) link

thx. def going to parasite

flopson, Saturday, 28 September 2019 05:13 (three weeks ago) link

From the first few pages of listings, these caught my eye of films I've seen...

- 'The Realm' is decent, if you fancy a political thriller with some interesting aspects. It won a whole bunch of Goya awards in Spain at the start of the year.

- 'Yuli' is excellent, if more crowd pleaser than arthouse. Directed by Icíar Bollaín with a fantastic screenplay by her partner Paul Laverty that weaves the dance into the biography brilliantly. Some of the Cuban actors are especially fantastic.

- 'Bait', as we've spoken about above a fair bit.

I was also reading about 'The Painted Bird' recently and it looks absolutely incredible, but will be a tough watch.

brain (krakow), Saturday, 28 September 2019 08:21 (three weeks ago) link

I recommend the Costa, and I hear great things about Anne at 13,000 Feet

Simon H., Saturday, 28 September 2019 10:04 (three weeks ago) link

Scandinavian films: Queen of Hearts is, like, the biggest sorta arthouse succes in Denmark in the last few years, and it's pretty damn great. Trine Dyrholm should absolutely be a household name all over the world, she's so good. I'd really want someone to watch Checkered Ninja and say what they think, it's the biggest blockbuster in the country since before television was invented, but it's also so entwined with the guy who made it, Anders Matthesen, who is a comedian popular on a level where I don't really think neither anyone in the US or the UK fits, and I'm not really sure if it's actually any good. Also, Koko-di Koko-da is legitimately terrifying, almost Haneke-like, with lovable Danish legend Peter Belli in the role as a straight up sociopathic tormentor. Not for the faint of heart. I'd suspect the same is true for JP Välkeapää's new Dogs Don't Wear Pants as well, his They Have Escaped was fucked up. I'm also excited to see Hlynur Palmasons A White White Day in a couple weeks, so I'd check that out as well. Johan Skoog's Ridge won the CPH:DOX award this year, and is a great hybrid/essay film about seasonal workers in Skåne.

Elsewhere, Mr Jones is a fine biopic, Pain and Glory is good for what it is. The new Angela Schanelec, I Was at Home, But... is a must for fans of the Berlin schoo. Synonyms, which won the Golden Bear, is good, and Nadav Lapid should be better known. Years of Construction by Heinz Emigholz is perfect if you just want an avant-doc about architecture.

Frederik B, Saturday, 28 September 2019 15:00 (three weeks ago) link


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