Thursday, September 27, 2007

"The last touch of elegance is elimination."
- Jean-Michel Frank

Darjeeling Limited - Wes Anderson

Let's talk about brothers, bothers and baggage. Have you been on a trip with your brothers lately? Has it been to a remote and "exotic" place? Have you been enlightened by that experience? It's been a long time since I've taken a trip with my brothers (yes, all male, the three of em') and I don't miss it but this is the second time I travel to an amazing place through Wes Anderson's films.

An original and impeccable quirky-exotic production design is the first thing I detect. Expecting to see just one film, the titles in the beginning denote that thefirst part of this movie is a short called "Hotel Chevalier". Hmmm... aight... you can watch it at itunes or when you buy the DVD but all I can say is that Natalie Portman looks incredibly hot -even the bruises adorn her skin- and... that's it.

The second part of the film, or the film itself starts with Bill Murray riding a cab, in an anarchic street of Deli? which takes him to a train station where he loses his train while the three main characters (Owen Wilson, Adrian Brody and Jason Schwartzman) enter the shot running and jump on it (and guess what? its called The Darjeeling Limited). After that, we hang out with these siblings who have not been together for more than a year (after their dad's funeral) and who fight, lie to each other and smoke , drink and take narcotics incessantly in the search of enlightenment, their mother and their lost friendship???

So anyway, as in all Anderson's flicks, the father and mother are a) dead b)irresponsible c) basket cases d) all of the above. Also, the costume design is great, not to mention the lovely luggage design by Marc Jacobs for Louis Vuitton with Wes brother's drawings of cowboys and indians... and last but not least... the soundtrack is a must.

After you watch the film, which brother do you identify the most?

P.S. that one dude who looks out of place is Roman Coppola.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Across the Universe - Julie Taymor

What a trip! I could not imagine watching this movie after smoking a joint... I would flip out. Since it started I felt this was like Moulin Rouge on LSD. What an amazing production design. I couldn't resist watching this film... even though in the trailer it seemed cheesy I had to go and check it out for myself. I'm not a Beatles fan, but I really enjoyed the music arrangements and I'm planning to get the soundtrack. I'm sure that all the Julliard kids will be singing it and dancing during their breaks at the cafeteria. Since the beginning I could tell that Jim Sturgess, the hottie who plays Jude (the main character) is the next big thing in Hollywood. Also, Evan Rachel Wood does an amazing job, but my favorite is Joe Anderson who plays Max, Rachel Wood's bro in the story. Check out the following songs; Happiness is a Warm Gun (with a Salma Hayek sexy cameo), Come Together (great black vocals, lots of soul), Strawberry Fields Forever (visuals are exquisite) and I am the Walrus (I hate Bono but I loved that psychedelic party scene).

Travel in time, totally worth your dime!

Run, Fat Boy, Run! - David Schwimmer

Let's start by saying that it's a Simon Pegg (Shaun of the Dead, Hot Fuzz) movie. He co-wrote it with Michael Ian Black and adapted it to British humor; it was meant to take place in New York but got picked up in the U.K. Run, fat Boy, Run is the story of Denis (Simon Pegg), a regular Joe that left his fiancé pregnant in the altar, is trying to recuperate her love but has nothing to offer. Once he meets his ex's new beau Hank Azaria), he starts making lot's of efforts to better his life and his image and among them he starts training for the marathon. Schwimmer's directorial debut is a jewel! There's many touchy-feely moments and leaves you with an overall satisfactory feel. Only weird thing was that the bad guy of the story was American... but isn't the director American as well?

By the way, Thandie Newton also showed up for the Q & A and she looked way too skinny... guess what was popping out of her strapless dress? her chest bones...

La Fillé Coupé in Deux - Claude Chabrol

It's difficult not like Claude Chabrol's films (unless you are conservative). They're funny, sexy, humane, and he usually casts very beautiful people (then again, its a French flick). This dramedy, or black comedy seems like a girl flick in the beginning; young blond bombshell (Ludivine Sagnier) is torn between and old sexy successful (but married) writer (Francois Berleand) and a young looney heir (Benoit Magimel). Ludivine is great, she suffers with grace and looks a lot like "La Denueve" mixed with Grace Kelly. There's plenty of comic situations, especially when Magimel (the heir) appears. he actually reminds me of my brother's best friend. I didn't think Magimel could also be a spoiled brat... he's so good in The Piano Teacher!! There's no trick to this one, go watch it when you can. It has a story that happens all the time... many will feel identified (or at least i know some who will). Didn't like the ending... it didn't match with the rest of the film.

Before The Devil Knows You're Dead - Sidney Lumet

I never thought I would like observing Philip Seymour Hoffman huffing, puffing and moaning while riding Marissa Tomei from behind. Yeah... very graphic right? Bad mental picture huh? Well, this is how this film starts. Sidney Lumet picked a script based on a real life story (fessing on the press screening that he didn't even know if Kelly Masterson, the screenwriter was a he or a she) about a couple of brothers who rob their parent's jewelry. Andy (Seymour Hoffman), the wannabe rich older brother who's always felt left out by his family, suggest Hank (Ethan Hawke)the young-broke-divorced-brother to rob their parents jewelry store on the suburbs and guess what? Murphy's Law comes in. Everything goes wrong, there's some deaths (yes, more than one), some intense quarreling and over all some excellent directing/acting.

Don't miss it, but don't go see it if you are depressed, or in a fight with your family.

The Romance of Astree and Celadon - Eric Rohmer

I must admit I got to the theater kind of late (10 minutes), but since the beginning I was hoping this was the opening short. I didn't expect Rohmer's last film to be about stupid stubborn shepards and druids falling in and out of love with words. All the characters were ridiculously good looking (and ridiculous too!). Alright, I admit I had some laughs when Celadon (Andy Gillet) pretends to be a woman (a very lesbic one). Sorry, not much to analyze, discover or review in this one, I guess they just programmed it cause its a Rohmer. My granny would love it though!

I saw the signs

Saturday, September 22, 2007

NYFF 07'

It's been five days since I arrived on Yankee land. This past four months that I've been in Mexico City I've missed NY a lot; my friends, my former job and its perks, the culinary variety, the parties and the cultural activities, but most importantly I miss watching good new movies. Therefore, after noticing that I had an extra $600 bucks on my bank account, courtesy of the Film Society, I decided to pay them back with "work".

My idea of work was to make a blog for NYFF and they were up for it, so I came for the press screenings. Nevertheless, when I got here, and talked to my former co-workers, they told me that things were not going to work as planned. They didn't have 60% of the screeners (which I counted on because I was not going to be able to
check out all the press screenings) plus they idea of web content linked to the filmlinc page was some epk on a pdf.

Nevertheless, I will try to keep my word and review or comment on all the films I
watch in and out of the festival.

Coming up:
The Romance of Astree and Celadon - Eric Rohmer
Before the Devil Knows You're Dead - Sidney Lumet
A Girl Cut in two - Claude Chabrol
Silent Light - Carlos Reygadas
Go-Go Tales - Abel Ferrara
Redacted - Brian de Palma
Leave her to heaven - John M. Stahl
Flight of the Red Ballon - Hou Hsiao-hsien
4 Months,3 Weeks and 2 Days - Cristian Mungiu
The Axe in the Attic - Ed Pincus and Lucia Small
The Darjeeling Limited - Wes Anderson
Secret Sunshine - Lee Chang-dong
The Orphanage - Juan Antonio Bayona
The Man From London - Bela Tarr
Married Life - Ira Sachs
The Diving Bell and the Butterfly - Julian Schnabel
Margot at the Wedding - Catherine Brelliat

Not in the festival:
Fitzcarraldo - Werner Herzog
Run, Fat Boy, Run - David Schwimmer
Across the Universe - Julie Taymor

Friday, September 07, 2007

On the Road's 50th anniversary playlist

Scenic Road - Bastian Marley
Road to Joy- Bright Eyes
Road - Nick Drake
All the roadrunning - Emmylou Harris
Hey Jack Kerouack - 10,000 Maniacs
The House that Jack Kerouack Built - The Go- Betweens
Moon - John Cale
A Kerouack Blues - George Elliot

Y unas que no son de Jack Kerouack pero me gustan...

Daylight Till Dawn - All Night Radio
Ask Jhonny Dee - The Chesterfields
Could you be loved - Pizzy Yelliot

De pasada lean el artículo de Juan Villoro que salió en El Reforma...