There was an excellent extract from Roger Ebert's book 'Life Itself : A Memoir' in The Observer.
I can't get enough of the artist Scott Jason Smith and his excellent series sketching the auteurs - I want these on the walls in my house. Although a huge Roman Polanski may just give me nightmares.
And Borat is the final link in Tarantino's Django Unchained - the film I'm most looking forward to and silently dreading at the same time. Weird.
New releases this week see Andrea Arnold's return with her uncompromising take on Emily Bronte's 'Wuthering Heights', which I happened to catch on it's opening day and you can see what I thought below this paragraph. Other releases see the return of Bruce Robinson with 'The Rum Diary', for which Johnny Depp has laid blame on the lack of intelligence in America's rural lands for it's lacklustre take at the box office, as well as Errol Morris' latest documentary Tabloid and Aardman have dropped the plasticine and gone all 3D with their latest offering, 'Arthur Christmas'.
|Kaya Scodelario as Cathy in 'Wuthering Heights'|
I will be writing about Otto Preminger's film 'Laura' in an upcoming feature but what a moody, witty and styled gem of a movie, I'm pretty new to Preminger's work and this one sets him apart from the majority of peers working in Hollywood studio system of the 40's, highly recommended. I was really looking forward to Tetsuya Nakashima's latest offering Confessions, a film with much praise attached to it but one I found rather overcooked, substituting style for substance and taking itself way to seriously, however despite it's many flaws I can't help but admire it, much to my own chagrin. Mummuth, yet another film with flaws and a bit too loose by large can't help but generate smiles of both appreciation and joy at seeing Depardieu play his big idiot role again.
Andrea Arnold's new film, an adaptation of 'Wuthering Heights' is sublime, for my worth her best yet and has certainly sparked debate with her vision of Bronte's wild novel. Stripping the book to the bare bones, Arnold has caught the aesthetic; the brooding violence, the love/hate dichotomy of Heathcliff and Cathy, the raw and unforgiving terrain, the wildness of the moors and how wonderful, freeing, they appear to the young. It's been said that the second half is not as affecting as when the characters are young and there's some truth to that but it doesn't take from what proves to be a raw and unflinching piece of work.
|George Harrison: Living in the Material World|
Martin Scorcese's in depth and well researched documentary on the life of George Harrison: Living in the Material World was shown on BBC2 over two night. With a fair proportion of archival material, some of the backstage and in studio footage is incredible, talking heads, old interviews, letters and documents, Scorsese's team put together the life of a truly remarkable, flawed but ultimately beautiful human being. Recommended for fans and non-fans alike, of either Harrison, or Scorsese, for that matter
Finally but nowhere near least, Patricio Guzman's cinematic essay 'Nostalgia for the Light', set in the remote, barren lands of the Atacama desert lies astronomers wondrously gazing at the clearest skies the world has to offer and alongside the widows, relatives, of the political prisoners 'dissapeared' during the brutal regime of Pinochet. Guzman knits a world of memory, of past, of history, of wonder together into a superb easy on the search for truth whilst working in the past, the astronomers look at the past in the sky, the relatives look for the past in the sand but both seek bigger pictures, both want clarity and understanding. Using space and scale, Guzman ties this all together with beauty and humility, he forges a path of hope through understanding, through truth and it's in that message that the film will leave you reeling, elated and hopeful of a better tomorrow.
Have a good week everyone and check out the trailer for Guzman's startling film 'Nostalgia for the Light' below.