Better late than never: a review of Wendy and Lucy (by Adam Hofbauer

December 16, 2008 at 3:57 am | Posted in Adam Hofbauer, film, Review, SLIFF | 2 Comments
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wendy-and-lucyIn director Kelly Reichardt’s Wendy and Lucy, Michelle Williams portrays a young woman in search of work in a vast American road-scape. Accompanied by her dog, she becomes stranded in a small town in Oregon when her car breaks down, and the film follows her everyday struggle to survive in a state of homeless transience Illuminated by a strong performance by Williams and a stark, bare bones production design, Wendy and Lucy continues in the style established by Reichardt in her previous film, Old Joy. In doing so, it improves even on that great film’s merits, creating an inescapable sense of time and place, and a person lost within both.
Williams disappears into her role, looking boyish and almost masculine in her unwashed and exhausted state. And while sometimes an unknown face contributes to our empathy for a character, it is the fact that we recognize Williams that makes her all the more convincing. In the last few months, this has become a country where poverty can seemingly strike anyone at any moment. And here is a movie-star, recognizable from television shows and tabloid headlines, portraying someone as hopeless and exhausted as one can possible become.

Continue Reading Better late than never: a review of Wendy and Lucy (by Adam Hofbauer…

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SLIFF 2008: A Tour Guide

November 20, 2008 at 4:47 pm | Posted in Brian Vacek, Movies, SLIFF | 1 Comment
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The St. Louis International Film Festival is a great time to enjoy yourself and take in a new film or two. That is, if you happen to be a casual movie-goer. If you’re a fanatical cinephile, its a stressfully delightful gauntlet run through an international smorgasbord of films that consumes your every waking hour and drives your loved ones to insanity. I walk the latter path.

I’m new here at Highway 61, but I’ve been blogging for some time now over at The Film Walrus where I babble incoherently about movies when I should probably be cooking, cleaning and socially interacting. I’m going to babble about movies here, too. With good reason: there’s so many films at SLIFF that no single person could see them all.

So you’ll probably be seeing a sustained spurt of my reviews over the next few weeks as I dash between the Tivoli, Plaza Frontenac and Webster making my sleepless eyes bleed and belatedly typing up my opinions. While these will be too late to do you any immediate good, most of these films are already available on DVD or in theaters or will be soon. I encourage you to seek out any films that sound interesting and, of course, you should do your own exploring of SLIFF’s offerings while the festival rages on.

If you need a quick tour guide, though, to sift through the many, many choices, I offer some advise: be eclectic. See features, documentaries, shorts, etc. See films from countries you know nothing about. Take a chance on a new director. Take in a mix of genre fluff and art house.

And keep an eye out for me! Here’s my schedule for this year:

Fri the 14th: Vanaja, Interkosmos with The Juche Idea, Shadowland

Sat the 15th: Mishima: A Life in Four Chapters, Slumdog Millionaire, Alone

Mon the 17th: All for Free, Special

Tues the 18th: Opera Jawa, Heartbeat Detector

Wed the 19th: The Pope’s Toilet, Stranded

Thurs the 20th: Of Parents and Children

Fri the 21st: The Custodian, Timecrimes

Sat the 22nd: The Trap, The Class, Yesterday Was A Lie

Sun the 23rd: Little Heroes, From Inside, The Wrestler

Film Geek – Saint Louis Int’l Film Festival

November 9, 2007 at 12:45 am | Posted in Events, exhibition, Film Student Fridays, Matthew Hurst, Movies, Webster Film Series | 1 Comment
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Saint Louis International Film Festival

November 8-18 2007

‘Nuff Said.

http://www.cinemastlouis.org/fest.html

(Check your local listings)

See you here, there, everywhere.

Film Geek – “Last” Week edition

October 12, 2007 at 4:15 pm | Posted in Film Student Fridays, Matthew Hurst, Webster Film Series | Comments Off on Film Geek – “Last” Week edition
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Whereas I could not give you a Film Geek post last week, this weekend is actually the Last Weekend for some of the film series we’ve been following.  From near the onet of this blog we’ve been following these series, which will close for the season.  Good thing SLIFF is coming up (more on that later).

This is also the last weekend for the Kompletely Keaton series in the Webster Film Series, which follows the films of master film director/actor Bust Keaton.  Ironically for this master of silent story telling, this last weekend will go out with a bang, crash, and other associated sounds provided by a live folley artist.  To say nothing of the live, authentically scored musical accompaniment, Kompleting an accurate re-Kreation of the original screenings of these Keaton films.

STL Community Arts & Media Project will run a few films of their own, including “Paris is Burning” next weekend.  It opened it’s new film series last Thursday, but intends to take place at the CAMP building on Cherokee every other Thursday around 7:30 for the indefinite future.

Frontyard Features has ended in Septmeber.  Cinemania @ Grand Center has also finished its run.

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