Thursday, 17 October 2013

LFF 8: Hello ladies

Joseph Gordon-Levitt was on hand at the 57th London Film Festival this week to present his writing-directing debut Don Jon, looking every bit the dude on the red carpet that his movie requires. There's definitely a sense that the festival is winding down, as film journalists are starting to wake up from their zombie-like states with the thought that they may get to sleep in a few days. Here are some more highlights...

Don Jon 
dir Joseph Gordon-Levitt; with Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Scarlett Johansson 13/US **** 
Gordon-Levitt catches us off-guard with this remarkably assured writing-directing debut, which also gives him a chance to go against type as an actor. It's a warm and raucous comedy that wins us over as it reveals the soft side of a dedicated hard-man... FULL REVIEW >

Kill Your Darlings 
dir John Krokidas; with Daniel Radcliffe, Dane DeHaan 13/US ***.
Based on a shocking true story about celebrities before they were famous, this dark drama is strikingly written, directed and acted to recount a series of unnerving events while evoking a mood that would later grow into a movement. It's a clever approach to a complex group of artists, even if it feels somewhat mannered... FULL REVIEW >

dir Peter Landesman with Zac Efron, James Badge Dale 13/US **.
With a documentary sense of detail, this film recounts JFK's assassination from a variety of previously unseen angles. It's skilfully made but lacks any sense of focus that might draw us in. There isn't a single well-developed character, and it oddly doesn't even centre on the hospital that gives the film its name... FULL REVIEW >

Blue Is the Warmest Colour 
dir Abdellatif Kechiche; with Adele Exarchopoulos, Lea Seydoux 13/Fr ****. 
Food, art and sex are the three elements of life in this evocative French drama, which takes a generous three hours to tell its story. This is an almost unnervingly honest film that holds us in rapt attention, shaking us even if we have nothing in common with the characters. Because it's about something much deeper than what's on screen... FULL REVIEW >

dir John Curran; with Mia Wasikowska, Adam Driver 13/Aus *** 
As an account of an incredible journey, this film can't help but hold our interest, especially when the central figure is so beautifully played. But director Curran opts for glossy warmth rather than expansive nature, which leaves it feeling more like a movie and less like real life. [review coming soon]

dir Sebastian Lelio; with Paulina Garcia, Sergio Hernandez 13/Chl **** 
This Chilean comedy-drama may have a rather meandering narrative, but it's packed with memorable scenes that bring its characters vividly to life. It's also a rare film that centres on a 50-something woman trying to make the most of life on her own terms... FULL REVIEW >

No comments: