Friday, 14 May 2010

Your Man In Cannes - Day 2

Busy day today in terms of viewings, dashing from cinema to cinema around Cannes in order to make the most of my time here.
After dashing to the Palais to book a ticket for the 8.30am screening of WALL STREET 2 tomorrow morning it was off to the Olympia (the only cinema in Cannes to also be screening mainstream cinema during the festival. Did you know that Freddy (aka Nightmare on Elm Street is a 12A here!).

BIG FAN - A supposed comedy about a NY Giants fan who gets beaten up by his favourite player who has to decide whether to prosecute him or drop the charges so he can play to help the team reach the playoffs.
Not big on laughs, this is on the darker edge of the comedy spectrum but the ending doesn't convince and the lead character doesn't learn from his experience and is also not very likeable.
Unlikely to screen in UK due to the American Football angle, but won't be missed.

TEENAGE PAPARAZZO - Documentary by Adrien Grenier (Vincent Chase from Entourage) about a 13 year old boy working as a papparazi in L.A.
This was a surprise. Interesting story that was well told by Grenier and not just a hate-filled rant about how bad the paps are. It actually took a detailed and balanced look at the relationship between celebrity and the paparrazi. Earned bonus points for correctly identifying LA DOLCE VITA as the starting point of the term paparazzo.

WELCOME TO THE RILEYS - Jake Scott from the directing dynasty of Ridley and Tony has made this film about a couple played by James Gandolfini and Melissa Leo who have struggled to come to terms with the loss of their teenage daughter and try to help Kristen Stewart's lap dancer.
Stewart is trying to hard to escape the enormous shadow of TWILIGHT and should be able to if she continues with the performances she can deliver in this, ADVENTURELAND and INTO THE WILD.
Great performances all round from the central trio in a film that is competently directed and has a realness to it that is admirable.
Expect to see this one on limited release around the arthouse circuit by the end of the year.

Randomly bumped into some of the London Picturehouse crew outside one of the cinemas on the high street, proving that Cannes is a small town after all. Stopped by the Cinema Sur La Plage to catch a bit of FROM HERE TO ETERNITY before swinging by the Cannes In A Van crew.

The van was just setting up about 10.00pm but there was already a curious crowd gathering around to see what was going on and were thoroughly entertained by the first film of the evening which was entitled 'A SHORT FILM ABOUT POO'.
Couldn't stay long as I had to run to the Palais to catch my last film of the day...

ELEKTRA LUXX - Carla Gugino is a porn star! Probably explains why the audience for the film was mostly men.
For a film with production values that make the average episode of Hollyoaks look very expensive, the digital camera used definitely gave off a soap opera vibe, this film had a top notch cast inclduing Joseph Gordon Levitt, Timothy Olyphant and one point Julianne Moore pops up as the Virgin Mary!
Unsure of its tone and direction, it starts with a web blogger looking back on the career of porn star Elektra Luxx and there is great potential for a spoof of the lifestyle, genre, etc but it then becomes a murder mystery before descending into a "what does it all mean?" look at her life. Also there is an unnecessary subplot that has no bearing on Elektra's storyline.
Game performances from everyone involved allow it to rise above its low budget roots but it is difficult to know what the audience would be for this film... other than guys wanting to see Carla Gugino's naked ass.

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