[One week in November]

I might see as many as three movies this weekend (I’m eyeing The Golden Compass & I’m Not There, plus I have a pass for Sweeney Todd), so it’s high time I got caught up here. I saw these all in the seven days prior to Thanksgiving.

* A local cinema has been putting on an on-going classics/revival festival, but as yet I’ve only made it to one. It was an excellent choice, though, Days of Heaven, which I had never seen before. (Oh my gosh this is so awful. I was trying to figure out what specifically I remembered Brooke Adams from. The answer? The Baby-Sitters Club. I don’t even know what to say to that.) It occurs to me in reading about Malick that what I like about him is also what I like about Wong Kar-Wai. They both are all over the place in shooting, and only in editing does the film really emerge, visually stunning & meditative, and often with a dreamy sort of voice-over. Hmm. Anyway, Days of Heaven is amazing, and it was particularly interesting to see it shortly after The Assassination of Jesse James, which clearly borrows from Malick a lot visually.

* Since we saw it, Into the Wild won Best Feature at the Gotham Awards. Which is weird, because it’s not. It *was* precisely the movie I needed to see after the parade of cynicism that had been my other movies that month. And it was visually lush and tremendously moving & hopeful through the various people McCandless encounters. But best feature is pushing it.

* Coming closer to best feature, though, is Atonement, which I loved to heartbreaking little bits. I hadn’t read the book, but I now have it on order. I really hope that James MacAvoy finally gets some attention from this, as he’s been painfully underrated in the past, but is just fantastically good here. Also, the score is brilliant, something I don’t often pay attention to, but it draws on and develops incidental sound. Epic, beautiful, contender for sure. The Dunkirk scene alone is worth the price of admission.

* Finally, SIFF Cinema ran a Kino series recently, including a Wong Kar-Wai double feature. First up was Fallen Angels, which I’ve never seen, even though it is somewhat kind of sort of maybe related to one of my favorite films, Chungking Express. Because I am shallow, it is possible that Takeshi Kaneshiro was my favorite part of the movie. His character was fantastic, though. And at one point he wears a Tank Girl tshirt that reads “Mother Figure”. How awesome is that? Extremely awesome.

* The second film, and the main reason I bought my ticket for the pair six weeks in advance, was Happy Together. I love this movie a lot, not just a little because it managed, ten years ago, to do that thing no American film has managed — it’s a film about a gay relationship where it is not at all about being gay. It’s about these people together in this time. Astonishingly simple, really. I notice different things every time I see it, and this time I paid more attention to Chen Chang (who now I see I remembered from Three Times, where he was excellent, even though the film didn’t work for me). This film as a whole was still marvelous, of course, and a treat to see on the big screen.

11 Replies to “[One week in November]”

  1. I’m eyeing The Golden Compass & I’m Not There, plus I have a pass for Sweeney Todd

    So when are you thinking of going to all of these movies? Because I’d be interested in tagging along for any/all of those. And, having just gotten a larger-than-expected Xmas bonus, I suddenly have an entertainment budget again. πŸ™‚

  2. Excellent question! The first two would be tomorrow & Saturday. Since The Golden Compass is at Cinerama I want to see it there, and perhaps a later show so there will be fewer kids. I’m Not There is at the Varsity and the Meridian. I kind of hate the Meridian, but it *is* more convenient. And Sweeney Todd’s Sunday morning at SIFF Cinema – I just emailed to see if I could add a plus 1, because I was totally not thinking when I RSVPed. I blame the plague. Mostly I was OMG FREE SWEENEY I HOPE IT IS NOT FULL. Like that πŸ˜‰


  3. *Golden Compass/late show/Cinerama – yes! I’m assuming this means 9:00 or so? I can meet you there.

    *I’m Not There/sometime Saturday – I’m up for the trip to the Varsity. I don’t get over there often enough. You thinking afternoon or evening?

    Sweeney Todd/Sunday morning/SIFF Cinema/McCaw Hall – This is really appealing, except for the morning part. How early are we talking?

  4. I’m just being snarky about S.T. If tickets are still available, I’m interested. Hell, I’d even pay … πŸ™‚

  5. πŸ™‚ It’s just a matter of they’ll let me add to the reservation. Which we’ll just have to see, but one would think so as the RSVP is a formality — the real cutoff is the first-come first-served bit of these things. I didn’t have any trouble with Atonement a few weeks ago, though. And early is 10:30.

  6. Yeah, the 9. I’m wondering if it might be worth it to order tickets. I could do it — I still owe you for Into the Wild, right? And I think evening for I’m Not There, just because otherwise it’ll cut up my day.

  7. Sounds like we have plans! Let me know if you can order the tickets–if not, I’ll arrange to.

    See you at 9:00, then!

  8. No problem. I’ll probably come directly from the office, as I’m only a few blocks from the theater, here, anyway (I can actually see the Cinerama sign from my new office window!).

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