Archive for May, 2012

City Dark, The

May 31st, 2012 - Graham Eley

A greater risk of cancer amongst night-shift workers and an expanding concealment of killer asteroids are amongst the potential repercussions of a largely overlooked ‘artificial light’ pollution of our night sky according to this intriguing feature documentary from Ian Cheney, best known as star, co-writer and cinematographer of the dangerous food exposé, King Corn.

 

Quirky viewpoints, scientific observation and personal evidence combine as food for thought for further investigation rather than being a compelling argument, as such, but it is Cheney’s lyrical, nostalgic and surprisingly philosophical contextualisation that sets it apart from many of the other environmental documentaries competing for festival slots and theatrical screenings.

 

Stunning images of artificial illumination above New York, Chicago and other major US cities take on an unsettling poetic beauty that belies its deadly sting in the tale.

 

Sparkling heavens over Arizona’s Sky Village provides the antidote as one of America’s remaining locations that still has access to the full awe-inspiring universal view.

 

Astrophysicist, Neil deGrasse Tyson, turns philosopher with a persuasive theory that the obscure night sky is ‘resetting’ our egos with a return to Man’s more primitive perception that it lies at the centre of the universe.

 

And Cheney laments the loss of childhood wonder, recollecting his own early days and homemade telescope in rural Maine.

 

A superb atmospheric soundtrack from The Fisherman Three and Ben Fries, which won a special jury award at SXSW, adds to the sense of a filmic tone poem with disconcerting asides.  None more so than the sight of disorientated newborn turtles following city lights to almost certain death rather than having the stars guide them to the safety of the sea; an undeniable interference with nature fully exposed.

 

This is Cheney’s second feature documentary in the director’s chair following the Greening of Southie four years ago.buy female viagrabuy female viagra australiafemale viagra for salebuy female viagra ukwomens viagra onlinecheap female viagrageneric female viagra

 

Cannes Film Festival 2012 (16-27 May)

May 27th, 2012 - Graham Eley

With Cannes predictions being almost as accurate as award season trends, it is often those outsiders for Palme d’Or success, which the pundits have overlooked in the build-up, that grab the headlines upon the announcement of the programme for the main competition.  So it proved today upon the unveiling of this year’s line-up where the inclusion of new films from world cinema heavyweights, Michael Haneke, Abbas Kiarostami and Jacques Audiard was such a shoo-in that their presence was barely newsworthy.  Amongst the surprises, on the other hand, there were some welcome entries, including John Hillcoat’s Lawless, which seemed set for a Venice world premiere at the end of festival season, and Alain Resnais’ follow up to his outstanding late work, Wild Grass.  Perhaps the most notable and telling absence was the complete lack of women filmmakers on the list.

 

Wes Anderson’s Moonrise Kingdom opens the festival on 16 May 2012 and will be the first opening film in competition for four years.  Claude Miller’s final film,Therese Desqueyroux, will close the film on 27 May 2012 out of competition.

 

 

Main Competition

 

After the Battle

Yousry Nasrallah

 

Egyptian filmmaker, Yousri Nasrallah, turns his attention to some of the complexities surrounding the Tahrir Square uprising that exist beyond the headlines of the world media.  Nasrallah explores the thorny subject of post-victory reprisals in a new political climate looking to distance itself from the past.  An unusual love story plays out against a community ostracising one of its militia members whom the Mubarak regime had intimidated into joining counter-revolution measures.  There are high expectations for this latest film to tackle the Arab Spring, being a topic that inventive documentaries have dominated so far.

 

 

The Angels’ Share

Ken Loach

 

Cannes favourite and former Palme d’Or winner, Ken Loach, returns to the Croisette with his latest feature, The Angels’ Share.  Downbeat Glaswegians chance their arm with a malt whiskey scam to escape the poverty trap in his fifth Scottish based feature but it will be lighter in tone than the others from this territory.  Roger Allam and John Henshaw star, and Loach’s long-term collaborator, Paul Laverty provides the script.

 

 

Beyond the Hills

Cristian Mungiu

 

A leading light of the Romanian New Wave, Cristian Mungiu, marked his last appearance on the Croisette with one of the strongest films of the last decade, 4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days.  It has taken Mungiu five years to follow up his Palme d’Or winner after concentrating on the production of features for other filmmakers.  His new film, Beyond the Hills, returns to his native Romania for an oblique exploration of the intricacies surrounding global migration in relation to the territory.  Two friends from an orphanage reunite later in life, one having a solitary existence in a convent and the other visiting from a new home in Germany in the hope of persuading her to leave.

 

 

Cosmopolis

David Cronenberg

 

Cosmopolis, one of the most keenly awaited films at this year’s Cannes, sees David Cronenberg adapt Don DeLillo’s highly praised novel of the same name for a Godardian take on contemporary consumerism in a post-9/11 Manhattan.  With intriguing parallels to Godard’s masterpiece of Capitalist meltdown, Weekend, a successful banker loses his money in increasingly bizarre ways during a nightmare car trip across town.  Robert Pattinson leads a strong cast that includes Paul Giamatti, Juliette Binoche and Samantha Morton.

 

 

Holy Motors

Léos Carax

 

Léos Carax’s first feature for over twelve years sees a series of Orlando style transformations for the 21st century but over a period of 24 hours.  Denis Lavant, who starred in Carax’s debut feature, Boy Meets Girl, as the start of a long association, plays the protagonist who switches gender and class and builds-up a potentially intriguing cultural portrait in the process.  Kylie Minogue co-stars following an interesting against-type casting selection.

 

 

The Hunt

Thomas Vinterberg

 

Thomas Vinterberg returns to the themes of his Dogme 95 hit, Festen, but in reverse.  The ‘hunt’ of the title refers to the ‘mob’ mentality of villagers pursuing a kindergarten teacher falsely accused of assaulting a young girl.  Its inclusion in the main competition is a major boost for Vinterberg who has struggled to repeat the critical success of Festen.  In demand, Mads Mikkelsen plays the lead.

 

 

In Another Country

Hong Sang-Soo

 

There are high expectations for Hong Sang-Soo’s first English speaking film, In Another Country.  A potentially intriguing portrait of a Korean coastal town as seen by outsiders features the remarkable Isabelle Huppert playing three different women visiting the location for the first time.  Hong, a familiar presence at Cannes, bagged the  Prix Un Certain Regard two years ago for HaHaHa.

 

 

In the Fog

Sergei Loznitsa

 

Sergei Loznitsa’s My Joy, his first fiction film, was a surprise selection for the Cannes main competition two years ago and now he returns with his follow-up, In the Fog.  Set in German-occupied Belorussia during the Second World War, a man falsely accused of colluding with the Nazis faces an unexpected moral dilemma when fighting to clear his name.  Loznitsa made five feature documentaries before switching to fiction and won the Golden Horn at the Cracow Film Festival for Revue.

 

 

Killing Them Softly

Andrew Dominik

 

Andrew Dominik’s follow-up to his outstanding Assassination of Jesse James is one of the most keenly awaited films of the year.  Based on George V Higgins’s novel, Cogan’s Trade, but renamed Killing Them Softly, Dominik will look to revise the ‘mafia double-dealing’ sub-genre in the same bold manner as he tackled the Western in his previous film.  Brad Pitt leads a strong cast that includes Ben Mendelsohn and Ray Liotta.

 

 

Lawless

John Hillcoat

 

Hard-edged Australian filmmaker, John Hillcoat (The Road), reunites with Nick Cave, who provides the script and soundtrack, for an adaptation of Matt Bondurant’s acclaimed novel, The Wettest County in the World.  Set in the Prohibition-era Virginia, three brothers protect their bootlegging empire in circumstances consistent with the film’s new title, Lawless.  Shia LaBeouf leads a strong cast that includes, amongst others, Gary Oldman, Guy Pearce and Mia Wasikowska.  Hillcoat and Cave last worked together on The Proposition, an uncompromisingly tough take on the outlaw sub-genre.

 

 

Like Someone in Love

Abbas Kiarostami

 

Abbas Kiarostami returns to Cannes with Like Someone in Love, his second feature made outside Iran and the follow up to the other, Certified Copy.  This time set in Japan, Aoi Miyazaki plays a student/prostitute who enters an ambiguous relationship with an older man that potentially changes her life.  Kiarostami has hinted that it will explore themes similar to Certified Copy but it is not clear whether this extends to playing the same Resnais-style Modernist games that wrong-footed some critics at Cannes two years ago.

 

 

Love

Michael Haneke

 

Michael Haneke follows his 2009 Palme d’Or winner, The White Ribbon, with an exploration of suffering in old age and its impact on relationships.  French veterans, Jean-Louis Trintignant and Emmanuelle Riva, play a couple in their eighties struggling to cope with the aftermath of the wife’s recent stroke.  Isabelle Huppert, who starred in Haneke’s The Piano Teacher & Time of the Wolf, makes her second appearance in this year’s main competition as the couple’s daughter living abroad.

 

 

Moonrise Kingdom

Wes Anderson

 

Wes Anderson’s Moonrise Kingdom will be the first opening film to appear in the main competition at Cannes for four years.  Returning to the mid-Sixties, two children elope from an insular New England island that the youth revolution has by-passed.  A string of ‘A’ listers, including Bruce Willis, Edward Norton and Bill Murray, to name but a few, provide a strong red carpet opportunity for the opening night.  Focus Features has acquired worldwide rights and will release it simultaneously in the US and UK on May 25, 2012.

 

 

Mud

Jeff Nichols

 

One of the leading lights of American independent cinema, Jeff Nichols, won last year’s Grand Prix Nespresso for the outstanding Take Shelter as the best film in Cannes Critics’ Week.  He returns twelve months later in the main competition with Mud, in which a teenager helping an escaped convict becomes the latest pretext for Nichols taking a sideways look at contemporary America.  Matthew McConaughey and Reese Witherspoon star alongside newcomer, Tye Sheridan.

 

 

On the Road

Walter Salles

 

Given cinema’s obsession with adaptations, with varying motives, it is surprising that 65 years have elapsed before one of the cornerstones of Beat Generation cool, Jack Kerouac’s groundbreaking novel, On the Road, finally appears on the big screen.  After many false starts, Walter Salles (Central Station, The Motorcycle Diaries) had the task of creating something new and original from material that still retains its freshness and appeal with succeeding generations.  Sam Riley, who was superb playing another young icon, Joy Divisions’ Ian Curtis in Control, and Garrett Hedlund lead a cast that includes Kristen Stewart, Kirsten Dunst and Amy Adams.

 

 

The Paperboy

Lee Daniels

 

Lee Daniels keenly awaited follow-up to his Academy Award nominated Precious, returns to 1960’s Miami for a switch from a contemporary social drama to the erotic thriller sub-genre.  Based upon Peter Dexter’s novel, The Paperboy, two young journalists cut corners fighting a ‘rough justice’ case for a death row inmate.  Zac Efron and Matthew McConaughey play the journalists in a strong cast that includes Nicole Kidman and John Cusak.

 

 

Paradise: Love

Ulrich Seidl

 

Ulrich Seidl came to the fore internationally in the main competition at Cannes four years ago with Import/Export, one of the most thought provoking films to tackle the complexities of globalisation.  He now returns with his follow-up, Paradise: Love, a close look at various disadvantaged characters that society has defined as outsiders.  Maria Hofstätter, who starred in Seidl’s Dog Days, heads the cast.

 

 

Post Tenebras Lux (Light After Darkness)

Carlos Reygadas

 

Arguably the most important of the filmmakers that have spearheaded the acclaimed Mexican New Wave, the ruthlessly independent Carlos Reygadas follows his realist masterpiece, Silent Light, with another carrying an evocative Bergmanesque sounding title, Light After Darkness.  But this time around, Reygadas, will venture outside Mexico to various locations in Europe for a potentially intriguing modernist reflection on aspects of his own life.  Outstanding cinematographer, Alexis Zabe, returns from Silent Light.

 

 

Reality

Matteo Garrone

 

Matteo Garrone returns to the main competition at Cannes with his follow-up to Gomorrah, which won the Grand Prix four years ago.  The ‘reality’ of the film’s title is of the contrived kind that has emerged from reality TV.  Matteo Garrone targets, Grande Fratello, the Italian version of Big Brother but will have a wider application.  Claudia Gerini (The Passion of the Christ) stars alongside Ciro Petrone, who returns from Gomorrah, and Paola Minaccioni (Loose Cannons).

 

 

Rust & Bone

Jacques Audiard

 

Jacques Audiard renews his partnership with screenwriter, Thomas Bidgain, with whom he crafted A Prophet, this century’s most important addition to the gangster genre.  This time around they rework various short stories from Canadian writer Craig Davidson that sees a homeless man team-up with a trainer of killer whales who suffers a terrible accident.  In demand Marion Cotillard (La Vie En Rose, Midnight in Paris) stars alongside Matthias Schoenaerts.

 

 

Taste of Money

Sang-soo Im

 

Leading South Korean auteur, Sang-soo Im returns to Cannes with his potentially challenging drama, Taste of Money, where adult themes will be the pretext for establishing links between class, gender and capitalism.  Yun-shik Baek, who starred in Sang’s The President’s Last Bang, heads a cast that includes Kang-woo Kim (Hahaha) and Hyo-Jin Kim.  It will be Sang’s second film in succession to screen in Cannes’ main competition following The Housemaid two years ago.

 

 

You Haven’t Seen Anything Yet

Alain Resnais

 

One of the masters of Modernist cinema, Alain Resnais (Last Year at Marienbad, Hiroshima Mon Amour) returns to Cannes with You Haven’t Seen Anything Yet, a partial adaptation of Jean Anouilh’s wartime play Eurydice, itself an updated version of the Orpheus myth, set amongst a band of travelling players.  A stunning cast includes Michel Piccoli, who originally came to the fore in Godard’s Le Mépris, and two of today’s finest character actors, Mathieu Amalric (The Diving Bell and the Butterfly, A Christmas Tale) and  Lambert Wilson (Of Gods and Men).  In his previous film, Wild Grass, a critical success at Cannes 2009, Resnais displayed all of the inventive powers that we associate with his long career extending over 60 years.  This will be the fifth time that Resnais has competed for the Palme d’Or.buy female viagrabuy female viagra australiafemale viagra for salebuy female viagra ukwomens viagra onlinecheap female viagrageneric female viagra

Moonrise Kingdom

May 25th, 2012 - Graham Eley

Wes Anderson characteristically creates his own alternative world in much the same way as Whit Stillman did in Damsels in Distress and although, like Stillman, he sets it in a specific time, it could just as easily have been any other in the preceding fifteen years with little by way of adjustment.

 

Anderson takes us to an idealised version of American postwar suburbia that is familiar from adventure comics, children’s TV and teen fiction where virtually every shot is picture postcard perfect, buildings are in pristine condition and scout masters wear knee length socks without raising a snigger.  The action unfolds on a fictional island off the coast of Sixties New England, sandwiched between the assassinations of JFK and Martin Luther King, both of which seem as remote from the residents here as those occurring in another continent.

 

Hell bent on dismantling this tyranny of orderliness, two twelve-year old kindred spirits elope, enjoy the stirrings of first love and leave the adults a merry dance before finding a way of fitting into a wider society destined to change in any event.

 

Newcomer, Jared Gilman, proves to be an unintentional screen stealer with a pitch perfect performance as the rebel Khaki Scout with a keen interest in Native Indian culture that more than hints at America’s sinister colonising past.  An orphan wearing familiar geeky glasses, Gilman remains true to type and quirky at one and the same time with an understated humour that avoids the common trap of the smart kid emulating an adult for cheap laughs.

 

Kara Hayward is also very good as the disaffected daughter of two lawyers, who address each other as ‘counsellor’.  With an unnerving inscrutable expression, she looks seriously menacing until a slight twitch of the cheek and blink of the eye exposes a vulnerability that is unmistakable without need for words.

 

And Bruce Willis, Frances McDormand and Anderson regular, Bill Murray, all display a cartoon-like simplicity in supporting roles that conceal a domestic angst that surfaces once the veneer of respectability falls away.

 

The film opens with the first movement of Benjamin Britten’s Young Persons’ Guide to the Orchestra when the composer introduces each instrument playing separately.  It closes with the orchestral finale when all the instruments come together as a symphonic whole when the island returns to normality.  In between, there is a threatening deluge drawing on the iconography of the apocalypse, which points to the Cold War and the failure of Eisenhower’s brand of bogus Fifties conservatism that would eventually end this more innocent time.  As with Stillman, Anderson laments the passing of a comforting notion with a gentle irony that recognises its imperfections.buy female viagrabuy female viagra australiafemale viagra for salebuy female viagra ukwomens viagra onlinecheap female viagrageneric female viagra

 

Having created a patchy oeuvre since his impressive debut, Rushmore, this is Anderson being very good indeed.

 

Cosmopolis

May 25th, 2012 - Graham Eley

David Cronenberg’s smart and stylish adaptation of Don DeLillo’s novel of the same name superbly captures the spirit of our age but concerns itself as much with the past and the future as it does with the here and now.

 

This is Godard’s Weekend for the 21st century.  A major Western city is almost at a standstill but this time it is New York; traffic is grinding to a halt, anarchists are on the rampage and the global economy is seemingly at the point of collapse.  Every scene, every location, every performance smells of the end of Capitalism, conceived as a post-feudal curse of Western civilisation.

 

An anarchist in a symbolic giant rat costume hints at Godard’s grotesque mutations of the human race but the transformations here are of a very different kind.  They manifest themselves in Robert Pattinson’s chilling portrayal of a young billionaire Wall Street trader, who has evolved into little more than a living gadget for absorbing and analysing floods of digital information in seconds; a soulless corporate entity no longer capable of human responses.  Things change so quickly in this world that the word computer is now outmoded, a quasi nostalgic reminder of more innocent times of deluded aspirations.

 

He embarks upon an absurd journey across Manhattan in a sound-proofed limo, jam-packed with state-of-the-art technology flashing the latest changes in the world markets.  It becomes the mise-en-scene for most of the film, a self-contained exclusive mini trading floor where various guests arrive, engaging in acid conversation as destructive as the anarchists’ antics outside.  He loses a fortune, without a care, betting against the yuan in a turbulent market; for this is a journey to the metaphorical Gates of Hell via a childhood barber, one final attempt at reconnecting with his past for old times sake.

 

A brilliantly conceived final scene brings him into contact with the Grim Reaper, in the form of a destitute former employee, played with an edgy menace by Paul Giamatti.  With a towel loosely draped around his head, Giamatti takes on the appearance of a black hooded skeleton from a renaissance painting, waving his scythe from side to side; here taking the form of a gun.  It is a set-up that has an antecedence in the post war works of the great American playwrights, and O’Neill and Miller in particular, as DeLillo’s dialogue philosophises on time, change and greed and, of course, resets Man’s ego along the way.

 

It is not a novel that lends itself easily to a film adaptation with the limited locations and reliance on stylised dialogue.  Cronenberg creates a road movie that does not so much transcend its literary origin – we are always aware of DeLillo’s formidable presence – but embraces it in a genuinely mesmerising cinematic experience whilst remaining faithful to the essence of the original.  It sits comfortably alongside his wordy previous film, the underrated A Dangerous Method, and marks a change of direction of real substance.buy female viagrabuy female viagra australiafemale viagra for salebuy female viagra ukwomens viagra onlinecheap female viagrageneric female viagra

Free Men (Les Hommes Libres)

May 25th, 2012 - Graham Eley

Just a few years before the implementation of the United Nations’ partition plan in the disputed territory of Palestine, there was a remarkable collaboration between Jews and Muslims in wartime Paris, which has slipped beneath the radar of our historical perceptions of the period; lost under the weight of hostilities that followed the establishment of the Israeli state.

 

Ismael Ferroukhi’s French Resistance thriller now tells this story almost 70 years down the line, at a time when a peaceful settlement to the Arab-Israeli conflict still remains beyond our grasp but changes in the region point to a new political climate.

 

This is a case of humanity overriding religious differences in the face of extreme adversity as the Nazis made their presence felt in occupied Paris.  Under the leadership of Ben Ghabrit, the city mosque not only offered a safe refuge for persecuted Jews but issued certificates falsifying their Muslim status and, as circumstances dictated, participated in daring escapes in broad daylight.

 

We see it from the perspective of an apolitical Algerian black marketeer, one of many that the Vichy police has coerced into spying on the mosque, who undergoes a political conversion that backfires on the authorities.  He forms an ambiguous homoerotic bond with a talented Jewish singer masquerading as a Muslim, and starts a romance with a woman freedom fighter who would shortly become a victim of the Holocaust.  It is through these emotional contacts that he discovers a new context to his fight for survival, no longer seen as an individual pursuit.

 

Tahar Rahim, who made a massive impact in Jacques Audiard’s A Prophet, impresses in the lead role, effortlessly switching from an easy nonchalance to a concerned observer and beyond.

 

Michael Lonsdale is a quiet but formidable presence as Ben Ghabrit, every bit the major operator who kept the Nazis at bay without compromising his principles.

 

This is a subtle film more concerned with the intricacies of the specific communities adapting to the very abnormal conditions rather than dwelling on other atrocities arising from the occupation.  In doing so, Ismael Ferroukhi provides a very timely reminder of the all too often overlooked similarities between the communities that should form an essential part of peace talks.order yasmin online buy yasmin contraceptive pill ukyasmin uddin yasmin generic costyasmin jiwa yasmin 28 costyasmin ocella

 

Dark Shadows

May 11th, 2012 - Graham Eley

Crossing the razor thin line dividing recurrent but relevant themes from predictable, lazy and ultimately boring material is one of the hazards facing an established auteur, knowing that some critics are set to pounce armed with cheap jokes at the ready.  Tim Burton treads dangerously close to that line in his follow-up to the underrated Alice in Wonderland but manages to stay on the right side until self-indulgence overpowers him in the closing scenes.  It is a lack of discipline that provides ready made ammunition to those who have the knives out for Burton, which is a pity, as there is still much to admire and enjoy along the way.

 

Inspired by a cult TV show from Burton’s childhood of the kind that seemingly nobody else can remember, an 18th century witch proves that ‘hell has no fury like a woman scorned’ when a dashing young heir to a family fortune rejects her sexual charms once too often.  Condemned to an eternal life as a vampire lying six feet under, he reappears in 1972 as an obvious lead-in to one of Burton’s favourite themes, the outsider, when unfortunate construction workers inadvertently exhume the blood thirsty body to their ultimate cost.

 

Burton’s mainstay, Johnny Depp, is very good playing the aristocratic vampire with a guilty conscience – but not enough to resist a skin full of the red stuff – attempting to reclaim his family’s greatness.  Looking suitably dandy, pale skinned and ludicrously out-of-place in Nixon’s America, he succumbs to a lust v love distraction shifting between wild sex with his tormentor ‘supernatural style’ and matters of the heart, rekindled by the reincarnated soul of a cherished pre-vampire flame.

 

Iconic symbols of post war modernity astound him but, in a smart conceit, they look increasingly outmoded and nostalgic to contemporary eyes.  Not exactly a political sub-text, it nevertheless has something to say about the changing perceptions of time in the light of accelerated technological progress.

 

Helena Bonham Carter catches the eye with an eccentric but humorous turn as an alcoholic residential psychiatrist desperately in need of help, who the family’s current generation has employed to counsel a son more than capable of finding his own way.

 

Burton’s musical counterpart, Alice Cooper, rolls back the years with a passable recreation of himself as at the time of the film’s setting, which somehow avoids self-mocking but comes across as slightly Rocky Horror.

 

The film overstays its welcome at almost two hours but, for the most part, serves up an appropriately outlandish and fun slice of Burton’s brand of gothic surrealism.  And there is a vintage set-piece moment of Burton par excellence concerning the M logo of McDonald’s and Mephistopheles.buy domperidone new zealandgeneric Motiliummotilium cheaporder yasmin online buy yasmin contraceptive pill ukyasmin uddin yasmin generic costyasmin jiwa yasmin 28 costyasmin ocella

 

Monsieur Lazhar

May 4th, 2012 - Graham Eley

A disturbed young teacher executes what appears to be an act of premeditated cruelty when she hangs herself in a classroom so as to be on full view at the start of lessons.

 

An eleven year old boy on milk duty tears off in a blind panic when he is first on the scene, an act that draws attention to the ghastly tragedy before his classmates arrive.

 

The boy’s closest companion becomes the only other pupil to see the dangling corpse when she surreptitiously sneaks a peep and regrets it afterwards.

 

And the devastating impact on the whole class does not fully emerge but there are hints of it reaching areas that we should not necessarily expect.

 

All of which seems an unlikely background for an uplifting movie but that is precisely what Philippe Falardeau achieves in his sixth feature, Monsieur Lazhar.

 

Mohamed Fellag is outstanding in the title role playing a substitute teacher with a bogus CV, whose old fashioned techniques are out of touch with the school’s paranoid political correctness but nevertheless wins the children over in the wretched circumstances after a tricky start.  With an imperceptible change somewhere along the line – one of those magical moments that brings cinema closest to reality – there is something of Laurent Cantet’s The Class in the varying but very genuine ways that the pupils respond positively to his quirky charisma, patent sincerity and occasional glimpses of vulnerability.

 

The school’s inflexibility in catering for the pupils’ trauma will strike a chord with many, it doing little more than ticking boxes so obviously designed for a different purpose.  Pointedly, it is only through Monsieur Lazhar’s rule breaking that the children start to come to terms with their grief and, in one case, an appalling unfair guilt.

 

But this is not a one-way process.  Monsieur Lazhar has a tragic backstory of his own that brought him from Algeria to Canada and would eventually compromise him in the present.  There is no artificial ‘Hollywood’ style resolution here but, something far more affecting, a realistic sense of his confronting the ghosts of his past as he teaches the pupils to face theirs.

 

Don’t be deterred by it reaching the final shortlist for a best foreign language Oscar.  Notwithstanding the schematic sounding synopsis of the kind likely to catch voters’ attention, it avoids the overdone sentimentality that unnecessarily marred the ending of last year’s winner, Susanne Bier’s In a Better World (Hævnen).purchase motiliumBuy Motilium onlinemotilium buy ukorder yasmin online buy yasmin contraceptive pill ukyasmin uddin yasmin generic costyasmin jiwa yasmin 28 costyasmin ocella

 

Taste the Waste

May 1st, 2012 - Graham Eley

The kind of programme filler that a second-tier film festival will screen as its opening film of the day before the main punters arrive, Taste the Waste is an agreeable enough look at the perfectly good food that we squander in name of sophisticated consumerism without containing anything particularly new.

 

Supermarkets’ prioritisation of aesthetics over nutrition, and European bureaucrats’ perverse scatter-gun approach towards health regulation are largely responsible for the appalling statistic that less than 50% of food produced lands on our plates.  Talking heads with embarrassed supermarket workers, frustrated farmers and other industry insiders lay bare consumers’ culpability in this well known instance of Capitalism gone mad where the ‘market’ compounds rather than corrects its own defects.

 

It throws in the kind of routine footage that we would expect, focusing upon independent attempts at recycling the food products before destruction, which only serves to heighten the sense that this is feature documentary filmmaking by numbers.

 

At least, it forces us to take a look at ourselves in the metaphorical mirror; albeit we do so some way before the end of the film.domperidone for sale onlineBuy domperidone buy motilium australiaorder yasmin online buy yasmin contraceptive pill ukyasmin uddin yasmin generic costyasmin jiwa yasmin 28 costyasmin ocella