I saw a couple of independent films outside Raindance: Who Needs Enemies is a low-budget London crime thriller that takes a clever approach to the genre and has a superb cast, but doesn't quite come together. And the comedy-documentary Seduced & Abandoned is a joy for movie fans, as Alec Baldwin and James Toback hit Cannes to sell their Iraq-set remake Last Tango in Tikrit. Pointed and very funny, it's packed with big-name cameos including Bertolucci himself, as well as surprisingly adept raconteur Ryan Gosling. And just last night I attended a massive Ender's Game teaser event with Harrison Ford, Asa Butterfield, Hailee Steinfeld and Ben Kingsley in attendance, but we'll have to wait to actually see the movie.
In continuing press screenings for the 57th London Film Festival, which opens Wednesday night, we caught up with Robert Redford's staggeringly well-made but somewhat over-done solo thriller All Is Lost; the amazing Robin Wright as a version of herself in Ari Folman's striking but confusing live-action/animated The Congress; the warm but implausible Brit-com Hello Carter with the likeable Charlie Cox, Christian Cooke and Jodie Whittaker; the provocative French drama Stranger by the Lake, which morphs from a quiet drama into a Hitcockian freakout on a gay-naturist beach; and the documentary Teenage, mixing terrific archive footage along with matching faked scenes that kind of undermine the entire point.