[Early March]

Last week I spent a draining two days at the Northwest Film Forum, for a few more films in their 69 series.

First up was the double feature of They Shoot Horses, Don’t They? & Midnight Cowboy. The first, in a lot of ways, felt really timely. It follows participants in a grueling, Depression-era dance marathon, and was a quite stressful movie to watch, for me. If you only see one of the three, though, see it. It didn’t leave me with a lot of energy for Midnight Cowboy, however, which has one of those endings that for normal people is depressing, but for me is uplifting. So there you go. Maybe it worked out after all.

The next night I was back for Funeral Parade of Roses, a reverse-Oedipal story set against Japanese transvestite culture. It draws on massive amounts of Western culture of the time — both pop & art house — and, fair warning, was surprisingly graphic in terms of violence. I’m glad I saw it, though I don’t need to see it again any time soon. Huzzah for the full series pass!

Finally, a bit of relief came in the SIFF member screening of Sunshine Cleaning, a sweet, worth-a-rental flick with Amy Adams & Emily Blunt as sisters who start a business in crime & death scene cleanup. Alan Arkin plays a variation on his Little Miss Sunshine role, but Clifton Collins Jr is the real supporting star, and not just because his character features one of the best special effects I’ve seen lately. Sweet & true, and scored a solid round of applause at the screening. So there you go.